A sugar glider bite hurt my little nephew. I warned his mom about handling them so early before they had a chance to bond with him.
How much does a bite hurt most people? Does it draw blood and do you need to see a doctor?
In this article, we’ll run through many factors associated with sugar glider bites.
Sugar Glider Bite Hurt?
No. A bite from a sugar glider should not hurt much. You might get caught off guard by the sudden nip when least expected.
- The trust and bonding process will reduce encounters with your sugar glider who may think that they need to constantly defend themselves.
- You might be getting groomed out of love and some little nibbles might be felt. If you feel them scraping their teeth and licking, you are being groomed.
- Otherwise sugar gliders bite out of fear or stress. They might feel trapped in this enclosure when they are adapted to constant movement to evade predators in the wild.
If you are bitten by a sugar glider, it shouldn’t cause any infection unless they are wild, from breeders that aren’t reputable or if they were in contact with bacteria or zoonotic diseases that they could spread to humans.
Because sugar glider teeth are shaped like tweezers rather than rodent fangs, their bites are quite mild and more like a strong squeeze.
What Happens if You Get Bit by a Sugar Glider?
In most cases, nothing will happen as long as the sugar glider is raised in captivity and from a reputable breeder. You can apply an antiseptic after washing the area with saline solution or clean water.
Bandage the wound if it has punctured the skin. Monitor the area and closely observe your sugar glider to make sure they are healthy as well.
The zoonotic pathogens Citrobacter, Enterobacter, multidrug-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa have all been identified as being carried by sugar gliders in the wild.
Why Did My Sugar Glider Bite Me?
Sugar gliders have been known to bite when they are startled. When carrying brand new gliders home for the very first time, this is the problem that the vast majority of people face.
When placed into a new environment for the first time, sugar gliders are certain to experience some level of anxiety.
- Gliders form social bonds through their sense of smell and are territorial.
- They may also feel trapped or cornered.
- Be gentle, speak in soft tones and take your time.
- You may also be getting nipped at as part of their intention to groom you out of love.
There is an entire process or adjustment for both of you that may take weeks or months to develop into a bond.
If the bites are just nibbles, then do not be concerned about the fact that sugar gliders like to groom their bonded partners or social group members.
Can You Touch Sugar Gliders?
Yes. Give it time before you begin trying to handle your sugar glider and tell others that they are not ready yet. You will need a couple of weeks to a couple of months before they fully trust being handled.
Sugar Gliders are delicate creatures, yet they are not difficult to manage. Before allowing a youngster to hold a sugar glider, you should make sure that the animal is accustomed to being held and does not bite.
This is why my nephew was bit. The whole process was rushed and the little sugar glider was startled.
Why Do Sugar Gliders Bite?
While gliders are generally gentle and social animals, they can bite if they feel threatened. Here are some possible reasons why sugar gliders bite:
1. They’re Scared
Gliders are naturally timid animals and will often bite out of fear. These marsupials typically bond by scent and can be quite territorial. As a result, introducing them to a new home can be a stressful experience.
One possibility is that they’re going through puberty. This is when your pet glider suddenly starts biting for no apparent reason. The good news is that this phase doesn’t last forever and they’ll eventually grow out of it.
Sugar gliders also nibble on their owners as a sign of love. They nibble, groom with lick and gentle bites that shouldn’t hurt their partners in the wild. They are only treating you the same way as someone they adore and care about enough to groom.
4. They Don’t Recognize Your Scent
One common reason gliders bite is that they don’t recognize your scent. If you’ve been gone for a while or haven’t been handling them as much, they may not remember who you are.
It’s important to give them some time to get used to your scent. It’s also crucial to maintain the same scent when handling them. This means using the same soap, lotion, and perfume every time.
What You Should Do If Your Pet Glider Bites You
The best thing you can do is remain calm and still until the sugar glider releases you from its grip. After the sugar glider has released you, give them some time to calm down before trying to interact again.
Afterward, check the area to see if the glider left a wound. If the animal bite left breaks the skin, you will need to clean and disinfect the area.
Gliders are prone to bacteria and other infections, so it’s important to take this step seriously. If the bite is more serious, you need to consult a doctor or veterinarian.
How to Get a Sugar Glider to Stop Biting
Give the glider time to trust you: If you just got your sugar glider, they may need some time to get used to you and build trust.
- Be patient and give them time.
- Use positive reinforcement: Whenever your sugar glider does something good, such as not biting, give them a treat or praise them.
- Feed the glider: Sometimes, pet gliders bite because they’re hungry. So make sure to feed them a nutritious diet and give them plenty of food and water.
- Provide entertainment: Bored gliders may start biting out of boredom. Provide them with toys and activities to keep them occupied.
If you’ve tried everything and your sugar glider is still biting, it may be a medical issue. Therefore, talk to a vet to see if there’s anything else you can do.
Sugar gliders are sap suckers by nature, and frequently bite items in search of more food. Be aware of this when hand-feeding your glider and offer more food before a bite occurs.
Understanding and respecting why your sugar glider may bite is the first step to a long and wonderful relationship with your glider.
Even the tamest glider bites occasionally, and some glider’s continue to bite for no reason whatsoever.
- Start by simply offering your glider a finger to sniff.
- Let them come to you on their own terms and offer treats as encouragement.
- Then, once they’re comfortable with you, you can start slowly petting them.
Your pet glider will learn to trust you and won’t bite with time and patience.
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