One of our greatest delights at BorderBuddy is helping to bring animals from all over the world to new, loving, furever homes. Cats, dogs, we’ve even helped home horses and an alpaca. We work with some of the best animal rescue organizations in the world to do this. Some of you may be aware that on September 28th, Canada is quietly banning the importation of dogs from countries deemed to be at high risk for rabies. Why September 28th?
Why can’t I import rescue dogs from certain countries into Canada anymore? The surprising reason
The reason may surprise you, it surprised us! In a nod to World Rabies Day (😳), Canada will no longer accept the import of “commercial” dogs. The rules are as follows:
“Commercial dogs include dogs intended for purposes such as being given/transferred to another person, resale, adoption, fostering, breeding, show or exhibition and research.”
It’s not unprecedented for animals crossing borders to be pre-screened for infectious illnesses, and/or undergo vaccinations for common ailments. Banning dogs from countries that the Canadian government has designated as high-risk for rabies does unfortunately mean that there will be fewer animals being rescued into Canadian homes.
What countries are “high-risk” for rabies according to Canada’s new laws:
The following countries are considered by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) as being high-risk for rabies caused by canine-variant viruses (dog rabies):
- Algeria, Angola
- Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi
- Cameroon, Central Africa Republic, Chad, Comoros, Côte D’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
- Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti
- Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Eswatini (Swaziland), Ethiopia
- Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau
- Lesotho, Liberia, Libya
- Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Mozambique
- Namibia, Niger, Nigeria
- Republic of Congo, Rwanda
- Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan
- Tanzania (including Zanzibar), Togo, Tunisia
- Western Sahara
- Zambia, Zimbabwe
Americas and Caribbean
- Belize, Bolivia, Brazil
- Colombia, Cuba
- Dominican Republic
- Ecuador, El Salvador
- Guatemala, Guyana
- Haiti, Honduras
Asia and the Middle East, Eastern Europe
- Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan
- Bangladesh, Belarus, Brunei
- Cambodia, China (mainland only)
- India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq
- Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan
- Laos, Lebanon
- Malaysia, Moldova, Mongolia, Myanmar (Burma)
- Nepal, North Korea
- Pakistan, Philippines
- Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Syria
- Tajikistan, Thailand, Türkiye, Turkmenistan
- Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan
This list is reviewed regularly by Inspection Canada and is subject to change.
Here are some organizations BorderBuddy has worked with include:
4Paws, Dog Gone Taxi, Las Animas Dog Rescue, The Pug Queen, and Thank Dog I am Out.
Don’t let the headlines scare you, not all rescue dogs are banned from being imported into Canada. Countries like Mexico are still permitted, and there are many shelters in the USA that specialize in homing high risk for euthanizing animals – also known as high-risk kill shelters😔. Animal rights organization Best Friend Society has a complete list of high-risk kill shelters in the USA where you can bring dogs into loving homes in Canada (and beyond). There is a surplus of abandoned dogs thanks to the COVID-19 crisis, so while some animals will sadly be banned from crossing into Canada, there are countless others from all over the world who can still become your new best friend(s).
Learn how BorderBuddy can help!