Wildlife Center Heals All Forms of Babies


Written by Dr. Greg Mertz of the New England Wildlife Center

This summer, a female opossum was brought to the Center because she was unable to walk. She was in shock and relatively unaware of her surroundings.  A veterinary exam showed that she had a fractured right leg and head trauma.  It was also discovered that she had ten babies in her pouch!  She apparently had been hit by a car.

She was stabilized with fluids and shock medications and made comfortable while she recovered to the point where she would sustain a full exam, x-rays and blood work.  After two days, it was apparent that she was not recovering full senescence, although vital signs had improved.  She was stomach tubed and fed a gruel to give her the resources needed to heal and to sustain the babies.

This Was No Accident

An x-ray was taken to evaluate the damage from her accident when we discovered that she had not had an encounter with an automobile, but had been repeatedly shot five times with a pellet gun in the face and front leg.  The one pellet fractured her front leg and the other pellets had impaired her nervous system.

Sadly, recovery for her was just not possible and we were forced to euthanatize her, but not until the babies reached an age where they could be weaned from Mom.  Eight of the original ten babies thrived and were successfully released back to the wild.

Hope & Healing for Thousands of Animals

Every year, nearly 2,000 animals pass through the New England Wildlife Center and all any of them want is to go home again. Enjoy this special video presentation of some of the patients who are so glad to be on their way to freedom once more.

Brought to you by the World’s Biggest Baby Shower for Animals, supporting the work of this wildlife center and dozens of mighty animal rescue squads across the planet.

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Fred Hoekstra
Fred Hoekstra5 years ago

Thank you Laura, for Sharing this!

Terry Vanderbush
Terry V5 years ago


Loretta P.
Loretta P5 years ago

I hope whoever shot this opossum encounters suffering and loss. Let Karma repay him for this terrible act. Thanks to the wildlife center and its work and saving most of the babies. It's so sad mamma did not survive, and all the time and efforts of the people at the center could have been devoted to a more natural emergency had not a stupid human shot the mamma in the first place.

Carrie Anne Brown

sad news about the possum but thanks for sharing, great video :)

Lynn C.
Lynn C5 years ago

Another place where people are doing good things. Thank you for bringing light and life to this dark planet!

timothy m.
timothy m5 years ago

Blessings to those who tried to save this critter.

By the way, the author needs to look up the word senescence.

Adrianne P.
A P5 years ago

How could someone be so cruel to do that to the momma possum?! Humans never cease to surprise me with their cruelty. I'm glad all the babies made it though.

Nancy L.
Nancy L5 years ago

Great job. Too bad about mommy.

KS Goh
KS Goh5 years ago

Thanks for the article.

Cindy B.
Cindy B5 years ago


....except that little "hiss." City possums hide in some dank hole all day long and then TRY to find food/water at night (often unsuccessfully) and TRY to avoid neighborhood dogs. MY possums, on the other hand, got treats, love, kisses and real cushy digs.

BTW, if you find baby possums, PLEASE KNOW that most "rescue" places will just kill them. DON'T take them to rescue places unless you can be assured they won't kill them. There are usually possum rescue ladies (just google) and they can help if the babies are really small.

If the babies ARE tiny, then they WILL need help to survive and often don't make it. The reason is: the mother was probably killed... and maybe the babies were in the pouch the whole time. (Some good samaritans, myself included, will stop and check a dead possum by the highway just to make sure there aren't babies in her pouch, especially in the spring.) If they WERE in the pouch, though, chances are that the milk has turned sour or toxic, and so the little ones need antibiotics if they have any chance to survive. That's why a wildlife rescue person needs to be called in; they know about the antibiotics.