The purpose of this blog is to share general information and is written to the author's best knowledge. It is not intended to be used in place of veterinary advice. For health concerns, please seek proper veterinary care.
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Sugar gliders are amazing little creatures and have recently grown in popularity as house pets. If you consider adopting a sugar glider, you may have many questions about them. One possible question is if you can take your sugar glider outside?
It is OK to take your sugar glider outside in a secure bonding pouch. However, don’t remove your sugar glider from the pouch or open the pouch unless you are confident that the sugar glider will not escape and run away. Generally, keeping the sugar glider in its pouch is safer while outside.
Sugar gliders are curious animals that may take off when you let them out of their pouches while outside. However, many seasoned sugar glider owners have some excellent tips for caring for your sugar glider when you are outdoors.
This article shares some tips for taking a sugar glider outside and highlights the dangers.
Why Shouldn’t You Take a Sugar Glider Outside?
Some sugar glider owners like to take their pets outside into the yard, and some even like to take them to parks or run errands. But they all caution against doing so unless you know how your sugar glider will react.
According to most sugar glider owners, you should only take your sugar glider outside if it is bonded to you and will not try to escape.
Taking your sugar glider out with you is perfectly safe as long as it is kept in a secure bonding pouch. This way, you can always have your pet with you without fearing that it will get lost or run away. In addition, the sugar glider gets to spend more time with you.
However, what are the dangers of letting a sugar glider out of its pouch when you are outside? Why shouldn’t you allow your sugar glider outside its pouch when you are outside?
1 – A Sugar Glider Might Get Lost Outside
Sugar gliders are fast and can quickly run away from you if they are let out of their pouches. Because sugar gliders prefer to be on high ground, they may retreat to a nearby tree or building and escape from there if you let them out of their pouch.
In addition, unless the sugar glider is bonded to you, it may not return when you call it. This can lead to you losing your sugar glider when you go outside.
2 – Other Animals Can Attack Sugar Gliders
If you take your sugar glider to a park and remove it from the pouch, there is a chance that the sugar glider can be attacked or injured by other animals, such as dogs or cats.
In addition, certain predatory birds can also catch the sugar glider. Therefore, keeping the sugar glider in its pouch is safer when you go outside to a park or public area.
3 – Sugar Gliders Are sensitive to the Sun
Never leave your sugar glider outside in the sunlight for long periods. Because they are nocturnal animals, sugar gliders are extremely sensitive to the sun. Their eyes are sensitive to sharp light, and they cannot be in the sun for extended periods.
This can lead to serious health problems and may even cause death. Therefore, if you do take your sugar glider outside, be sure to keep it away from direct light.
4 – Sugar Gliders Can Drown
Another danger of letting a sugar glider out when outside is that it can fall into a fountain or water source and drown. Sugar gliders cannot swim, and many have drowned by falling into the water.
This is also why you should always keep the lid on your toilet at home. Therefore, don’t take a sugar glider out of its pouch when you are outside or near a water source.
5 – Some Public Places Don’t Allow Pets
Some places, such as restaurants, libraries, or certain parks, don’t allow pets and won’t look kindly upon your sugar glider if you are caught with it.
Fortunately, if your sugar glider is sleeping in its pouch, it can easily go unnoticed. However, don’t remove your sugar glider from its pouch while you are in a public space to prevent any issues.
These are the main dangers and concerns when taking your sugar glider outside. The most critical problem you should be concerned about is that the sugar glider might runoff, and you cannot find it again.
However, in some cases, sugar glider owners say that they can let some of their gliders out of the pouch while outside. However, that depends on the specific sugar glider.
When Can You Take a Sugar Glider Outside?
As mentioned, it’s generally perfectly safe to take a sugar glider outside when it is in a secure pouch. However, ensure the pouch cannot be opened from the inside.
For example, don’t use a Velcro pouch when going outside, as the sugar gliders can open these pouches from the inside. Instead, use a pouch with a zip for closing.
However, you might wonder if it’s possible to open the pouch and show your sugar gliders to friends or to let it roam outside in your backyard for a bit.
While the dangers mentioned above should make you cautious about doing so, some sugar glider owners said they can let some of their gliders out. But that depends on the temperament of your sugar glider.
If your sugar glider is attached to you and will not run off if it’s released from its pouch while outside, you can consider opening the pouch. Here are some ways to see how your sugar glider will react to being let out of its pouch while outside.
Step 1: See How the Sugar Glider Reacts Indoors
When training your sugar glider to stay by your side, the first thing you should do is see how it reacts when indoors.
Take your sugar glider out of its habitat and keep it in the same room as the cage. Ensure the space is sugar glider safe, and watch what it does when released from the cage.
The sugar glider will likely explore the room. See how it reacts when you call it. If it comes to you, feed it a snack and allow it to explore some more. If the glider remains close to your side or crawls around on you rather than scurrying off, it is a good sign that the sugar glider is bonded to you.
Step 2: Test the Sugar Glider in a Larger Area
Once you are comfortable with the sugar glider’s responses in a room, you can give it access to the entire house. Again, ensure all water sources are covered and never leave the sugar glider unsupervised. Once again, you want to see how it will react when in a larger, open space.
Suppose the glider stays close to you or climbs in your shirt or pocket and stays there. In that case, it is an excellent sign that the sugar glider is very attached to you and less likely to leave your side when you take it outside.
However, if the sugar glider immediately runs off without a care for your whereabouts, it will likely do the same when outdoors, and this is a warning sign not to take it out.
Step 3: Try Taking the Sugar Glider to Your Backyard
Before taking the sugar glider to a public place and removing it from its pouch, see how it reacts in an enclosed space, like your backyard.
Be on guard, though, in case the glider decides to make a run for it. If the sugar glider remains at your side, it will likely do the same when out in public.
However, there’s no telling how the sugar glider will react to the noises, sights, and scents in a public space. So, you can never guarantee it won’t try to run off when you take it out of its pouch in public. Therefore, it will always remain a risk to do so.
It is not recommended that you take your sugar glider out of its pouch when you are outside. While the sugar glider is perfectly safe in its pouch, it can try to run away when you take it out. In addition, other animals may try to catch it, and it can get injured when taken out of its pouch.
You can test the sugar glider indoors to determine how it will react when taken outdoors. However, there is always a chance that it will respond unexpectedly in a new environment, regardless of how attached it was to you while indoors.
Therefore, to be safe, never remove your sugar glider from its pouch while you are outside.