Importation of Carnivores
The following carnivore species may be imported into California only by authorization from the California Department of Public Health, Veterinary Public Health Section (VPHS):
Family Canidae: Genera Alopex, Canis (all species except Canis lupus familiaris), Urocyon, and Vulpes. All other members of this family are admissible without permit from VPHS.
Family Felidae: New World species of genera Felis and Panthera. All other members of this family are admissible without permit from VPHS.
Family Mustelidae: Genera Mephitis and Spilogale. All other members of this family are admissible without permit from VPHS.
Family Procyinidae: Genera Bassariscus and Procyon. All other members of this family are admissible without permit from VPHS.
The carnivores identified above may be imported into California only upon receipt of a permit issued by VPHS. To apply for an importation permit, the importer must:
1. Determine the purpose for which the animal is to be imported: Exhibition, Nonresident Short-term Exhibition, or Re-Entry.
2. Review the Guidelines Webpage for the type of permit desired.
3. Verify that a VPHS-approved quanantine facility, either at the consignee's facility or at a facility contracted by the consignee, is available to receive and hold the animal for the designated quarantine period.
4. Complete the importation permit application, collect necessary supporting documentation as specified under the permit guidelines, andemail application package to VetPH@cdph.ca.gov.
While VPHS endeavors to process permit applications in as timely a manner as possible, there is no guarantee that the permit will be issued by a specific date. Importers should submit permit applications to VPHS as soon as practically possible. The permit application form must be received by VPHS no less than ten (10) business days preceding the anticipated date of shipment. All supporting documents must be received by VPHS no less than five (5) business days preceding the anticipated date of shipment.
The permit will be issued via email; the carnivore may be imported into California upon receipt of the importation permit. If indicated as required on the permit, the imported carnivore must be placed immediately upon arrival into quarantine for 90 days. At the end of the 90 days, the carnivore must be examined by a veterinarian. If the veterinarian certifies that the carnivore is healthy and free of evidence of infectious or communicable diseases, he/she will complete, sign, date, and e-mail to VPHS the Veterinary Certificate of Quarantine. If information on the Veterinary Certificate of Quarantine is satisfactory, VPHS will issue a Release from Quarantine. The consignee may release the carnivore from quarantine only upon receipt of the VPHS Release from Quarantine.