Posted Mar 01, 2016
I am sure that there are plenty of people who have had good experiences with these animals, and, had I had the time to invest into its mental well-being, I'm sure mine would have been good as well. However, these creatures require a lot of handling, especially when young, in order to bond with people. The issue is that, if they do not receive that level of bonding very young, it is nigh-impossible to ever get them to be friendly.
When I got this animal, he was skittish and pretty uncomfortable being held. It felt to me like he was halfway in between friendly/loving and terrified/mean. This would have been the perfect time to give him all of the love and handling and attention that he required, but it really is like raising a child almost. Another issue was that, with his sharp claws and the fact that he would bite sometimes for no reason, the inclination to want to hold him faded quickly. It wasn't that he started out mean, just that he was very temperamental and responded like - well, like an animal. Which is to be expected, of course.
Sadly, the longer that he went with being held only a few times a day and then tucked back into his cage when he started getting irritable, the more hostile he became. It was not very long before I couldn't even clean his cage without him screaming and attacking me. Again, I partly blame myself for not having the time (and, when I did have the time, being a little afraid) to give him all the attention that he needed to be happy.
He would scream in his cage day in and day out, jumping around in a frenzy and trying to escape. The cage was huge, but he just clearly hated the confinement. He squeezed out of it one time, injuring himself in the process, and crawled inside of my walls. When I finally caught him (with big work gloves on and winter jacket), he destroyed the sleeves of the jacket and tried to claw and bite at my face.
All in all, a horrible experience. Gorgeous animal. Very lively (though that, in his case, I think was a bad thing). We eventually ended up bringing him back to the breeder who we had bought him from and letting him know that we couldn't keep him in the house. He terrified the other animals with his screeching, and in a very short time became the angriest creature I had ever met. I have met feral cats that were friendlier.
The good news: while expensive, the cage is pretty easy to set up. You'll want to keep a lot of toys and things for them to climb on, but it's not hard to put together. Cleaning is pretty easy if your pet is well-behaved and doesn't try to kill you. Feeding is, too, though they do have a pretty picky appetite. Sugar Gliders are GORGEOUS animals, so that is a plus side, but I feel like the amount of attention required to keep this animal from going homicidal-maniac was not worth the few upsides in that aspect. I like pets that I can love on, and that will love on me. A baby sugar glider needs time to see you as a parental figure, someone it can trust and get constant attention from until it's certain that it can relax when it's alone. I do not have that kind of time. I definitely do not recommend this pet for children, at all, for obvious reasons.