A cheeky possum gave a woman a real fright when it followed her home and jumped into her cardigan pocket.

The sugar glider, which belongs to the marsupial family, ran up the baffled woman’s back and made itself a home in her cardigan.

She initially thought it was a chipmunk before she called animal welfare officers who came to the rescue on Monday.

Officers from the Scottish SPCA attended her home in the Leith area of Edinburgh and took the possum to their rehoming centre in Balerno.

Animal Rescue Officer Steph Grant said: “The lady initially thought it was a chipmunk.

“She had just got inside her stairwell when the sugar glider ran up her back and went inside her cardigan pocket. It then stayed there until I arrived, which was around 40 minutes later.

“It’s pretty feisty and the poor woman understandably got a bit of a fright.

“We think it may have been on the loose on Leith Walk when it followed her into her stair.

“This may be the first sugar glider we have rescued and it’s certainly a new one for me.

“These animals are native to Australia but some people do keep them as pets in the UK and you don’t need a licence to do so, although they do have specialist care requirements as with all exotic pets.

“One of the other residents in the flat works at the zoo and I initially joked that he must have brought it home by mistake.

“However, this definitely isn’t the case as there aren’t any sugar gliders at the zoo and he was just as puzzled as me.

“This sugar glider is in very good condition although it’s still rather skittish and very shy.”

The charity is now appealing for the possum’s owner to get in touch.

Steph Grant: “We are appealing to the owner to get in touch with us as we think someone may be missing their pet.

“If no-one comes forward we will be looking for someone with the knowledge and experience to care for this sugar glider.”

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