List of All States That Allow Possums as Pets

When most people think of keeping pets the most obvious choice is a dog, cat, a bunny or a hamster. Sometimes we may think of owning a snake pet or a fish in the aquarium. Rarely do we think about keeping possums as pets.

Possums are generally wild animals and most variants cannot be domesticated. In fact, it is illegal to own possums in some states. However, some states may allow you to keep possums but only with a license while it is entirely legal in other states.

In this article, we will list states that allow possums as pets either with or without a permit. We will also list states in which it is completely illegal to keep possums as pets.

states that allow possums as pets

States that allow possums as pets

The United States has strict regulations when it comes to owning exotic pets. Although these regulations may change, it is important to know if keeping a possum in your state may cause you trouble. 

These are the states that allow possums as pets without a permit;

  • Florida
  • Arkansas
  • Oregon
  • Wyoming
  • Wisconsin
  • Delaware
  • Massachusetts


Only honey possums and sugar gliders are completely legal in Florida. You will be required to obtain a license if you opt to keep other possum species.

In Oregon, only short-tailed opossum is entirely legal while Massachusetts only allows sugar-glider possums as pets.

States that allow possums as pets with a permit

The following states may allow you to keep a possum pet but only with a license;

  • Arizona
  • Colorado
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Kentucky
  • Kansas
  • Maine
  • Michigan
  • Mississippi
  • Minnesota
  • Maryland
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New York
  • New Jersy
  • New Mexico
  • New Hampshire
  • North Dakota
  • South Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oregon
  • Oklahoma
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • West Virginia


You can only keep the Virginia opossum with the relevant license while in Oregon while in Arizona you can only get a license for the short-tailed opossum.

States that do not allow possums as pets

It is illegal to own possums as pets in the following states;

  • Alaska
  • Alabama
  • Connecticut
  • North California
  • California
  • Georgia
  • Hawaii
  • Idaho
  • Louisiana
  • Lowa
  • Pennsylvania
  • Texas
  • Tennesse
  • Vermont
  • Washington


What is the difference between a possum and an opossum?

The is no difference between a possum and an opossum. The same species is given either of the names depending on the region.

What should I feed a pet possum?

Generally, possums require a diet high in proteins and low in fat. This diet should include grass, garden pests snails, and insects.

For how long do pet possums live?

Pet possums can live for as long as 4 years in captivity and 2-3 years while in the wild. This is because unlike in the wild where they are exposed to harsh conditions, possums kept as pets have better chances to live long.

Can possums infect humans?

Possums are the most dangerous exotic animals to keep as pets. They are very susceptible to infections that can be transferred to other pets and humans as well.

Possums carry diseases such as tuberculosis, coccidiosis, and Chagas disease.

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