A Possum In My Yard

BigDog2191

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#1
Well, tonight there was a possum in my yard. I took Rocky outside and I just kind of stood there, looked up at the clouds and thought about the craptacular weather as rain drops bounced off my face when I heard a commotion in a part of the yard where I couldn't really see Rocky, I hear him let loose a bunch of thunderous barks.

And I see a possum rocket out of the area and it goes into this little encavement on the bottom of a huge tree and, as expected, Rocky follows it. Rocky's got it cornered at this point and he closes in on it, but all he does is bark. The possum has it's mouth wide open and it's teeth bared. And, at some points, Rocky would get real close almost to sniff it or get a better look at it but he never attacked it which surprised me.

I didn't want to stand by and let them fight just for the sheer fact that the possum may have rabies and I didn't want Rocky to contract it. Otherwise, I'd have let him take care of it.

So I took Rocky inside and out of harms way. I took care of the Possum.

Question: Why didn't Rocky attack it? I figured his prey-drive would've kicked in big time and he would've killed it. But he just looked at it and barked. Is it that he's not old enough?
 
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#2
did you shoot it? I remember awhile back i shot one with a pellet gun.. didnt do much as i had to smack it with a shovel several times. If i lived in the middle of no where the little guy would of got a .308 from my m1a though :hail:

Maybe your dog was smart enough to know those posum's are dirty! Thus, leaving it alone?
 

Ashlea

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#3
Why are possums to bad? From what I have seen they are cute. I have never seen one in the flesh but are they really that dangerous?
 
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#4
No they're not "bad". They can carry rabies though, and they also have some very sharp teeth. I lived in a wooded area when I was in highschool and we had one that visited the bird feeders every once in awhile. We called her Blossum. Blossum the Possum....:D
 

Ashlea

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#5
Cute!! Then why do people feel they have to kill them, we have things that carry rabies but we just keep our pets away from them.
 

Buddy'sParents

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#6
Possums are bad. They can do incredible amounts of damage and are NOT something that anyone with pets should want anywhere near their backyard.

BigDog, Buddy was scared to death of the possum that was in our backyard, but will chase a squirrel. Perhaps the dogs know that possums are bad, bad, bad...
 
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#7
I guess that all depends on where you live. The possum in our backyard didn't bother us and we didn't bother her. She wasn't destructive that I noticed. Of course our backyard was woods. If she hadn't been afraid of people that would have made me nervous, but if you walked out into the backyard she'd scurry away into the woods. With a wooded area as a backyard, we kind of got used to seeing wildlife I guess.
 
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#8
Possums are very common here, and you see a lot of them in town because the ones around here don't seem very afraid of people like other wild animals. I think many of them have become used to raiding trash and outdoor pets' food, so they no longer fear humans or going near houses. I worked at a group home for people with mental/physical disabilities for about 4 years and they had a few stray cats that would hang around outside. Some of the clients liked to feed them so we let the cats stay, but they were always outdoors. One summer, a huge fat possum decided that he also liked the house and the catfood we left outside for the strays. He would stroll right up at night and lean against the sliding glass door! We'd chase him away but he'd always come back. Of course we didn't have any guns or anything like that in the house so we didn't shoot him. We ended up calling animal control due to concern over disease (they do carry rabies).
 

Brattina88

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#9
why is everyone so terrified of rabies? Aren't your dogs protected, or is there a lot of recent rabies outbreaks in your area?

Animals are less and less afraid of people and pets because we are pushing closer and closer into their habitats. They're running out of places to go. No wonder they have to bother us looking for food and whatnot
 

ToscasMom

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#10
My animals aren't protected. I'm not When I saw that skunk the size of Brooklyn, I ran so fast my feet didn't touch the ground. If I thought it wouldn't have released all of its stink, I would have shot it.

I know it's true we have cut off their habitat. I see things around here i never saw before. Crows the size of chickens. Birds large enough to cast shadows. Deer drinking out of pools, too many racoons to count, wild turkeys. I do not live in the country, I just don't live "far" from the country, but seeing these things on my land is all very strange to me. So you can imagine that rabies would be the first though, as in "What the heck is THAT doing here?".
 
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#11
I guess I'm a little surprised that people are so afraid of them too. I can understand if they looked sick or were causing lots of problems. Otherwise, they're just like any other animal. I doubt many people here would shoot a stray cat. Even on my campus we've got tons of chipmunks, rabbits, and raccoons. I like it, it reminds me of home.
 

Debi

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#12
I don't think Ham would have attacked it either, Big. he would have done exactly as Rock did...cornered it and barked. I can tell you absolutely that Hammie has NO prey drive. maybe that's odd, but he could truly care less about wildlife. (and we have everything here) unlike my husky mix, Ad....who would have tore into that possum (which would have freaked me out, they can be very mean with those sharp teeth!) Ad digs up chipmunk burrows, and chases anything. lol Ham would go after a stray dog, but we've walked already where we've encountered a deer at close range and he wasn't impressed. :)
 

FoxyWench

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#13
I cant fathome what kind of BIG BIG trouble these possums could be, we have 3 in our yard and theyve done nothing but good, they eat the rotting vegies and fruit (they seem to prefer the over ripe and leave the good stuff) they also seem to like snacking on the slugs and snails that like to eat our veggies and my plants and flowers.

Yes they CAN carry rabies (much less likley than racoons and foxes i might add) but the a possum is more likely to play dead than attack...
I dont like vacinating my dogs but im a wildlife rehabber who specilizes in Vector species (any speices that can carry rabies, so i work with coons, possums foxes cyote, bat ect) so my dogs get the rabies vac once every 3 years, they also HAVE to for lisencing...

Ive yet to have an issue with nay of the possums round here...
we see more of the 1 skunk than we do of any of the 3 possums! (the skunk however i wish i could relocate, my parents spaniel just doesnt get the whole that think makes you stinky and means you get abath thing lol...

the possums are getting pretty people bold though but thats because so many leave their pets food outside (yes i know for some its inevitable) and were encroaching so much into their land, where else are they supposed to go.

id understand shooting a possum thats acting rabid (out during daylight hours, there dawn dusk night critters) seem "drunk" ect...) but just shooting one because its in your yard...
 

Brattina88

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#15
I don't think anyway specifically said you shot it... lol, but heres how that played out
did you shoot it? I remember awhile back i shot one with a pellet gun..
Cute!! Then why do people feel they have to kill them, we have things that carry rabies but we just keep our pets away from them.
I but just shooting one because its in your yard...
So... what did you do with it? j/w of course...
 

PixieSticksandTricks

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#16
Why are possums to bad? From what I have seen they are cute. I have never seen one in the flesh but are they really that dangerous?
They can have rabies. And they can be nasty mean. We used to get them all the time when we had property. I was always taught to stay away from them and that they were something that shouldn't be messed with. I don't remember my dad ever killing one it just seemed they came for awhile and then would just disappear. We used to call them "yokum streachers" sp? I don't know why but thats what I still call them. Im not really afraid of them. I just give them their space.

A site on them
http://opossum.craton.net/
 

PixieSticksandTricks

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#17
did you shoot it? I remember awhile back i shot one with a pellet gun.. didnt do much as i had to smack it with a shovel several times. If i lived in the middle of no where the little guy would of got a .308 from my m1a though :hail:

Maybe your dog was smart enough to know those posum's are dirty! Thus, leaving it alone?
Well that whole thing is just lovely :rolleyes: .
 

FoxyWench

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#18
sry i didnt mean to imply YOU shot it, more along the lines of why anyone would want to shoot it just because its in their yard.
 
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#19
Well that whole thing is just lovely :rolleyes: .
The possum's were ripping the screen off the windows and entering the house. They were setting up shop underneath my friends house. What was i to do? chase them away? That didnt work, we tried.
they're varmints... they bring disease, ticks, flea's etc...

I was raised a hunter so my up bringing is different from those who were raised to save snakes and snails who were in the middle of the street.

unlike most members here, i do not live in the country side. I'm 15-20 minutes from the LAX airport and 5 minutes from the beach (which has great swells for surfing in the winter i may add). The city i live in has been here for a long long time. So seeing a varmint is not a pretty site. We have squirrels that i've only shot with a CAMERA. and we have raccoons also which i leave alone. They've never bothered me. The possums on the other hand... They cause problems. There's numerous times where they have ran in the middle of the street and stopped... They just stop and stare at you while you're driving 25-30mph and you have to slam your brakes because you think it's a cat. What "positive" things do they bring? teach me... since i've been raised to believe they are varmints

Just because i hunt doesnt mean i hate animals. I love animals and i even enjoy animals as small as fish (i used to breed them).

Just hope no one got the wrong impression.
 

Julie

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#20
The possum's were ripping the screen off the windows and entering the house. They were setting up shop underneath my friends house. What was i to do? chase them away? That didnt work, we tried.
they're varmints... they bring disease, ticks, flea's etc...

I was raised a hunter so my up bringing is different from those who were raised to save snakes and snails who were in the middle of the street.

unlike most members here, i do not live in the country side. I'm 15-20 minutes from the LAX airport and 5 minutes from the beach (which has great swells for surfing in the winter i may add). The city i live in has been here for a long long time. So seeing a varmint is not a pretty site. We have squirrels that i've only shot with a CAMERA. and we have raccoons also which i leave alone. They've never bothered me. The possums on the other hand... They cause problems. There's numerous times where they have ran in the middle of the street and stopped... They just stop and stare at you while you're driving 25-30mph and you have to slam your brakes because you think it's a cat. What "positive" things do they bring? teach me... since i've been raised to believe they are varmints

Just because i hunt doesnt mean i hate animals. I love animals and i even enjoy animals as small as fish (i used to breed them).

Just hope no one got the wrong impression.
I just wanted to say, if you were raised as a "respectful" hunter...you would never have attempted to shoot a opossum with a pellet gun...... that as you said just doesn't do the trick. Either trap/relocate or use a bigger gun, if you are having problems.
In my experience, a young opossum was regularly gaining access to our basement...... Hubby just picked the young'in up by the tail. Here is a picture of him in our kitchen. And as politely as possible, put him in the neighbors yard.........then we fixed the crawl space opening that lead to access to our basement...........problem solved.



They can be very mean, but would never attack unless cornered. Unless of course if it were diseased. I have not had any problems just respecting their space, and have never seen a rabied one either.:)
 

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