The majority of the time opossums only become orphaned after their mother is killed while some fall from her back or are somehow separated. If there isn’t a mother in sight for a period of time you should follow the steps below. However, many young opossums may be young and on their own for the first time. Although they appear small and helpless, it’s best that these opossums are left alone. If an opossum is sick, injured, or too young (less than 7 inches from nose to lower back) are in need of emergency assistance.
Steps For a Safe Rescue
- Wear gloves and personal protection. Do not use bare hands while helping a wild opossum.
- Be careful and avoid getting bitten, licked, or scratched.
- Prepare a container, sturdy box, or animal carrier. Trash cans and plastic containers will work quickly depending on the size of the opossum. Make sure the lid will fit securely to the top of the container.
- When capturing the opossum approach it from behind. Gather the animal in a towel then immediately place it into the container. Cover the seal and ensure the opossum will not be able to escape.
- As soon as you can get in touch with Erica Miller Wildlife Rehab and we will assist you from there.