“Barny Brushtail is not well. He has sore places and is very sick.” When I got there Barny was asleep under a pot plant on the balcony. I checked him over – he had very sore and infected testicles.
I took him to the vet, who looked decidedly worried at the prospect of handling this huge ‘fierce’ male possum. I asked if he would like me to hold him, and he gratefully said “yes please”.
I picked him up, sat him on his backside in a begging position exposing himself quietly to the vet. Alarm turned to amazement. “Is he tame?” No, just a silly old man, I explained.
Twice a day I rubbed antibiotic cream on his sore places. He was gorgeous and happy with the attention. However this eventually had to stop. He was better and had to go back home.
I arranged to take him back and was directed to the back balcony “where Barny lives”. A huge cat was there. I hesitated and said “what about the cat?” “Oh, they have grown up together. They are friends.” Reluctantly I opened the cage. Barney walks out, meets the cat, and they potter off together into the bushes.
Two months later, “Barny is sick again.” This time ‘Barney’ was not so happy to be picked up. Once home I tried to investigate the recurring problem. Funny! No balls. This is Mrs Barney. Unfortunately she was very sick and died. Barny is now out looking for a new pretty young thing to call his own. Unfortunately the vet thinks Barny is now infertile.