Definition of a Pet

Definition of a Pet

A pet is a privately-owned companion animal not intended for research or resale and includes the following animal groups only:

Dogs
Dogs
Cats
Cats
Ferrets
Ferrets
Rabbits
Rabbits
Rodents
Rodents
Hedgehogs
Hedgehog/
Tenrecs
Reptiles
Reptiles
Amphibians
Amphibians
Pet Birds
Pet Birds
CAUTION- Not All Birds are considered pets 

Multiple agencies, including USDA APHIS and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), may be involved in pet bird travel. It is critical that your pet bird meets ALL applicable requirements before travel.

Depending on the type of bird you have, APHIS regulations may vary. Due to the possibility of carrying or transmitting certain diseases to the U.S. poultry industry, some pet birds are regulated as poultry and must meet different requirements. 

Birds regulated as poultry include:

  • chickens
  • doves
  • ducks
  • geese
  • grouse
  • guinea fowl
  • partridges
  • pea fowl
  • pheasants
  • pigeons
  • quail
  • swans
  • turkeys

If your pet bird is listed above, it does NOT qualify for travel as a pet bird.  You must meet specific import or export requirements for poultry.  Visit the APHIS Import and Export website for live animals to learn more.

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