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what to do if you're bit by a possum

Opossums are scavengers that often visit human homes to raid garbage cans, dumpsters, or other containers that have food in them. As a result, possums are one of the most common animals to infest homes and properties. If you find a possum in your home, it is best to call a wildlife removal company to assist you, as these animals might bite when they feel threatened.

If you have attempted to remove a possum from your home and been bitten, you might be wondering what you should do. Being aware of how to respond to a possum bite effectively can prevent you from contracting diseases or getting an infection.

Why Would a Possum Bite You?

Just like any scared animal, possums usually only bite when they feel threatened. If a possum has taken up residency in your home, they could even have babies living with them. As a result, attempting to remove them from your home could make them defensive, causing you to get bitten.

It is important to note that possums will use other methods of defense before resorting to biting. When a possum feels like you are threatening them or their babies, they might play dead or hiss to attempt to scare you off. If you continue to move towards them, then they might decide to bite you in defense of their home, food, or babies.

Can Possums Carry Diseases?

Opossums are often considered a nuisance because they can cause significant damage to your garden or home. These animals feed on berries, grapes, fruits, or nuts, and tend to leave droppings wherever they go. Additionally, they may get into fights with your animals when they feel threatened.

While possums can carry diseases, they usually are not the type that can affect humans. This is because their body temperatures are too low. However, if one of your pets is bitten by a possum they might be vulnerable to contracting a wide variety of diseases.

Possums are known to carry the following types of diseases:[1]

  • Leptospirosis
  • Tuberculosis
  • Relapsing fever
  • Tularemia
  • Spotted fever
  • Toxoplasmosis
  • Coccidiosis
  • Trichomoniasis
  • Chagas disease

In addition, possums can become infested with fleas, ticks, mites, and lice. Oftentimes, possums are the main host for fleas that affect dogs and cats in urban areas.

How to Respond to a Possum Bite

If you are bitten by a possum, you might be wondering what you should do. The first thing you should know is that possums are not known to carry rabies. Because they have a low body temperature, their bodies cannot support the disease.

While you are not at risk of developing rabies, there are still some steps you should take to ensure your health after a possum bite.

If you are bitten by a possum, you should:

  • Wash the bite well with soap and water to avoid contamination
  • Apply an antiseptic cream or lotion
  • Place a bandaid on top of the wound to prevent bacteria
  • Go to a doctor or emergency room if the bite is bad enough or causing severe bleeding

After you care for your bite, you should consider calling a wildlife removal company that can safely rehome the possum. This will ensure that you, your family members, or your pets are not bitten by the possum in the future.

How to Remove a Possum from Your Home Safely

You should never attempt to remove a possum from your home on your own. While they are not known to be aggressive creatures, you could accidentally hurt the possum or receive a nasty bite. Instead, consider contacting a wildlife removal company.

While there are over-the-counter chemicals available that claim to repel possums, these usually will not remove them from your home. Instead, trapping cages should be used to safely move the possum outside of the house. Thankfully, animal removal companies like Nuisance Wildlife have all of the tools you will need for successful possum removal from your home.

After the wildlife removal company has removed the possum, there are some steps you can take to ensure that more possums do not come back in the future.

To prevent possums from coming into your yard or home, consider the following:

  • Putting up a fence that is at least 4 feet high
  • Prune trees and shrubs, remove brush piles or debris, and clean up fallen fruit in your yard
  • Use tight-fitting lids on your garbage cans
  • Put your pet food away at night
  • Close off or block entrances around your house

Work With a Reputable Wildlife Removal Company in Lantana, FL

Whether you have raccoons, rats, termites, or possums invading your home, Nuisance Wildlife Rangers are here to help. We can remove any type of wildlife from your home humanely and effectively, keeping you and the animal safe at the same time.

Nuisance Wildlife Rangers is a full-time wildlife and animal removal company that extends its services to both commercial and residential clients. We have a great team of animal trappers who will work tirelessly to ensure that your home is free of any nuisance critters.

To learn more about how we can help, contact Nuisance Wildlife Rangers today.


  1. Alameda County Department of Environmental Health (ACVCSD): Opossums, Retrieved September 2023 From
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