I have wanted a Short Tail Opossum for YEARS. Probably a decade, to be honest. I have tried to find them around here and never could. So now that I have the means to do so, I decided to get a breeding trio. If you are interested in going on the non-obligatory Wait List for one, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I do not want to take a deposit for them until after they are born because they are apparently difficult to breed. I am totally in love with them though!!
CRQH May AWHH
SPC-MI-KC Poppy AWHH
SPB-MI-KC Donovan AWHH
Is a Short Tail Opossum the Right Pet for Me? It seems like a good place to start. Yes, I wanted one for years. I did all the research. Watched all the YouTube videos. But there are things I did not know and was not warned of until I actually had them.
I was assured they did not smell by one breeder. They do definitely smell, males more than females. Not nearly as bad as ferrets. A few things I have found helps. The biggest thing was getting them on the proper diet, which is discussed below. Make sure the water bottle works. Also, I found that by using Equine Pine and Kaytee Aspen, that is the best bedding mixture to cut down on the smell. And when you clean, leave some of tbe dirty bedding behind. This prevents them from going crazy and scent marking a clean cage
Another thing I wish I would have known, and it kind of goes along with the smell, is that their feces is very hard to clean off of the wheel. I recommend that you buy a gallon of Kennel Sol (veterinary strength disinfectant that I use when cleaning cages), spray that puppy down, and let it sit for a few minutes. Then wipe it with a couple baby wipes. I've also realized that the smooth (bigger) Carolina Wheels are much easier to clean than the smaller ones.
And one more thing I want to point out is that they are an exotic animal, just like the hedgehogs are. Chances are they aren't going to sit there and cuddle with you. Mine tolerate handling, some more than others. You will need a mesh bed tent to keep them from getting away from you while bonding, just like with sugar gliders. And fleece bonding pouches will be your friend. One thing I've noticed, and I don't know if it is just mine, they have never bitten me hard (knock on wood).
As I learn more I will add more. I do not ever sugar-coat anything. I would rather lose a sale than for you to be unhappy with a pet that did not live up to your expectations.
There are many different ways that you can house STOs. Some house in 20L or larger aquariums. Some house in Critter Nations. I chose to take a 113 qt Hefty storage tote, cut windows and add mesh. It has four latches on it which is great because THEY ARE ESCAPE ARTISTS, or so I'm told. The important thing is that you house separately. They will kill each other.
Any bedding can be used except for Cedar, Corn (Corn Cob, KayKob), and non- Kiln dried pine. They drink from water bottles or bowls. They get dehydrated extremely fast so it is important that they have a working water bottle if that is what you decide to use. The temperature should be between 73-80 degrees Fahrenheit. They should be given a solid, open wheel like a Carolina Wheel, branches to climb on, and at least one hide.
Shortly after getting my STOs, my male started losing fur on his hip. Through research I learned that malnutrition can cause this. Through even more research I learned that I was told the improper way to feed them. They need GRAIN-FREE cat kibble only 3 times a week. I feed Solid Gold Winged Tiger w/Quail & Pumpkin Sensitive Stomach. The other days I choose a protein like plain cooked chicken, turkey, liver, eggs, a frozen/thawed pinkie, etc. Then I give them a serving of veggies and fruits and some bugs. They usually won't eat their veggies unless they're mixed with fruit. Baby food is a great way to do this. I use Beechnut Naturals because it doesn't have any added sugar. DON'T FEED ONION, AVOCADO, GARLIC, TOMATO OR MUSHROOM. For the bugs, as with the hedgehogs, do not give wild caught. They could have come in contact with poison. They can have crickets, grasshoppers, dubia roaches, superworms, meal worms, hornworms, butterworms, etc.