Importing or Travelling with Pet Rodents

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Note: Members of the order Rodentia

Animals of the rodentia order include all types of agoutis, beavers, capybaras, chinchillas, chipmunks, coypus, gerbils, gophers, groundhogs, guinea pigs, gundis, hamsters, jerboas, lemmings, maras, marmots, mice, muskrats, pacaranas, pacas, porcupines, prairie dogs, rats, springhares, squirrels, tucotucos, viscachas, and voles.

These requirements apply to:

  • animals entering Canada permanently
  • animals in transit through Canada on their way to a final destination
  • animals entering Canada for a temporary visit

Rodents, other than those identified below, can be imported into Canada without an import permit, health certificate, or inspection (Part XII of the Health of Animals Regulations applies to the transportation of all animals and an inspection related to humane transport may be conducted.)

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has placed restrictions on the importation of certain rodents for pets, including:

  • prairie dogs, gambian pouch rats, or squirrels from most countries; or
  • any rodents from Africa.

Please refer to the Automated Import Reference System (AIRS) or contact a local CFIA Office for more information.

Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES)

It is the importer's responsibility to determine whether the species for importation is subject to the controls imposed by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), which are administered by the Canadian Wildlife Service. Please contact the Canadian Wildlife Service for information.

Provincial Governments

Please note that some rodents are subject to import controls imposed by provincial government departments. For example:

  • Alberta - Permit required for rats
    Pest and Nuisance Control Regulation
  • New Brunswick - Permit required for exotic wildlife (any bird, mammal or other vertebrate that is not indigenous to the Province and is of a species of wildlife that in its natural habitat is usually wild by nature)
    Fish and Wildlife Act
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