Fennec Fox Pet Legal States

Fennec Fox Pet Legal States

fennec fox pet

Fennec fox pet toy foxes are never illegal!

Fennec fox pet ownership laws vary widely from country to country and state to state. And you are probably curious about can i have Fennec fox as a pet? In the US, make sure to check with your state wildlife division as well as your city and county before trying to purchase a fennec fox pet. Some states may require you to have a USDA license or a permit before owning a pet fennec.

Disclaimer – Although I have done my best to find out the law for each state, the laws change all the time and may not be 100% accurate, before buying a fennec fox pet call your local fish and wildlife service office here.

If you have more information that isn’t covered here relating to your state please contact us here and I will happily update this page.

Below is a list of US states with information pertaining to whether it is legal or illegal to own a fennec fox pet.


Alabama – Illegal

Disallowed according to rules governing pet ownership. It is also impossible to obtain a license.

Alaska – Illegal

Apart from being illegal, your fennec fox does not belong in these temperatures.fennec fox pet

Arizona – Illegal as pets

Persons possessing restricted wildlife must obtain a wildlife holding permit to lawfully possess the animal. The Department issues wildlife holding permits to: (1) individuals who legally possess restricted live wildlife and are moving into the state, (2) for educational display, (3) or advancement of science, and (4) to foster an animal unable to return to the wild. Persons already residing in Arizona are not permitted to possess restricted live wildlife as “pets” unless they qualify for a permit. Restricted live wildlife includes, but is not limited to the following species: all species of Carnivora (canines, felines, excluding domestic); orangutans, chimpanzees, gorillas, alligators, crocodiles, cobras, vipers, etc. However, you can possess all other non-infant primates as “pets” if the animal is free from any zoonotic diseases.

Arkansas – Legal, with an import permit if traveling from another state.

Arkansas Game and Fish Commission – Code of Regulations – Section 15

California – Illegal

They fall under the CA exotic animal ban since they are in the Order Carnivora. You can only acquire a permit for commercial purposes.

Colorado – Illegal

fennec fox pet

Connecticut – Illegal

All Foxes are illegal in Connecticut.

Delaware – Legal, with permit

You must acquire a license.

Florida – Legal, with permit.

Fennecs are considered Class III Wildlife, and need a permit at no extra cost.

Georgia – Illegal

All fox species are illegal to own as pets.

Hawaii – Illegal

No exotic pets allowed. Hawaii has some of the strictest exotic pet laws.

Idaho – Illegal as pet

Only legal as fur-bearers or for educational display purposes.

Illinois – Illegal as pet

Allowed with a yearly Fur-bearing Mammal Breeder Permit.  You have to purchase the fox from another licensed breeder and you must keep and maintain records of the purchase, sale, and propagation of your foxes.

Illinois Code here, and page here.

Indiana – Legal, with permit

You must first get a permit



Iowa – Illegal

Information from Sybil’s Den

A person shall not own, possess or breed a dangerous wild animal.

5. a. “Dangerous wild animal” means any of the following:

(1) A member of the family canidae of the order carnivora, including but not limited to wolves, coyotes, and jackals. However, a dangerous wild animal does not include a domestic dog.

(2) A member of the family hyaenidae of the order of carnivora, including but not limited to hyenas.

(3) A member of the family felidae of the order carnivora, including but not limited to lions, tigers, cougars, leopards, cheetahs, ocelots, and servals. However, a dangerous wild animal does not include a domestic cat.

There are several exemption clauses however, owning any type of fox or canidae is illegal with the exception of dogs.

Kansas – Legal

The Kansas administration regulation 115-20-3 states that anyone can own a fennec fox pet provided that it has been acquired in a legal manner.

If you are importing the pet it will need to be quarantined for 30 days and must qualify for a health certificate.

Kentucky – Illegal

Louisiana – Maybe

Exotic, nonnative foxes are not regulated, so it might be possible to own one without a license.

Maine – Legal

A permit is required to take alive, possess or import any native or exotic wildlife for the following purposes pursuant to Title 12 MRSA Section 12152: Wildlife Exhibit, including any commercial display of wildlife; General Wildlife Possession, including propagation or personal use of wildlife; Wildlife Rehabilitation. Wildlife Importation, pursuant to 12 MRSA Section 12155; and Scientific Collection pursuant to 12 MRSA Section 12704.

Maine state laws.

Maryland – Illegal

Information from Sybil’s Den

Sec. 17. 12 MRSA §7504, sub-§3 deals with the possession, breeding and raising and transferring of dangerous animals with the exception of research facilities, federally licensed exhibitors, any person who has been issued a license from the Department of Natural Resources, a nonprofit organization managed animal sanctuary, an animal control officer, a veterinarian or a person who is a non-resident of Maryland who is to be in the state or 10 or less.

Maryland Code Annoted, Criminal Law § 10-621 prohibits the importation, selling, trading, bartering, possessing, breeding or trading of bears, raccoons, skunks and foxes. Also included are crocodiles, alligators, caiman, any of the cat family other than domesticated cats and any hybrid cat family member that weighs more than 30 pounds, dog family members other than domestic dogs, hybrid dog family members, non-human primates and poisonous snakes.

Massachusetts – Illegal

Information from Sybil’s Den.

MASS. GEN. LAWS ANN. ch. 131, §77A http://www.malegislature.gov/Laws/Gener … Section77A
prohibits hybrids of dogs and cats.

Wild animals require a permit(not given for pets, pretty much zoos only) unless exempted. You can find the extesive list of exempted animals here:
http://www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/dfg/df … -list.html

Foxes do not appear on this list.

Michigan – Legal, with health certificate.

Allowed with a health certificate.

Animal Industry Act,  Michigan Legislation

Minnesota – Illegal

All types of foxes are disallowed as pets.

Mississippi – Illegal

It is unlawful for a person to import or possess any wild animal classified inherently dangerous by law or regulation unless that person holds a permit or is exempted from holding a permit. The fennec fox, being of the Order Carnivora is included in this list.


Missouri – Illegal

All foxes are disallowed as pets.

Montana – Legal, with health permit.


Exotic foxes entering the state should have a health permit.

Nebraska – Legal

Information from Sybils Den

The Nebraska administrative code that pertains to fox ownership:

http://www.sos.ne.gov/rules-and-regs/re … 000731.pdf

The animals listed in 008.08A may be imported into Nebraska. If an animal is not listed, it cannot be imported into Nebraska. Regarding the USDA permit and 2006 date, I am not sure why that date is a cut-off point. The following telephone number will connect you to a USDA inspector who may be able to answer that question (redacted). Foxes needing permits to keep in captivity (red and grey) are native to Nebraska. The import lists indicates that any foxes in the Vulpes genus are allowed to be imported, including fennec foxes. Other than red and grey foxes, a permit is not needed from Nebraska Game and Parks Commission for other foxes in the Vulpes genus.

Jeff D. Hoffman
Assistant Division Administrator
Wildlife Division
Nebraska Game & Parks Commission
2200 N. 33rd
Lincoln, NE 68503

Nevada – Illegal

Foxes are illegal to own in Nevada.

New Hampshire – Illegal

You can only own a fennec fox with an exhibitor license

New Hampshire state laws.

New Jersey – Illegal

Classified as potentially dangerous or damaging to the environment under article 7:25-4.8.

New Jersey state laws.

New Mexico – Illegal

New York – Legal

The Fennec Fox is listed as a companion animal.

North Carolina – Maybe

It is unclear without further research, but it seems legal.

North Carolina state laws.

North Dakota – Legal

You need a non-traditional livestock license, a certificate from a veterinarian and an import permit unless your fox is ranch-raised.

https://www.nd.gov/ndda/program/non-traditional-livestock fennec fox pet

Ohio – Legal

Foxes require a “noncommercial propagating license,” which costs $25 per year.

Oklahoma – Legal

A non-commercial breeder’s license is required for foxes, except fennec foxes (Vulpes zerda), which are exempt from import and export permits, commercial wildlife breeders licenses, noncommercial wildlife breeders licenses and commercial hunting area license requirements.

Oregon – Illegal

Pennsylvania – Legal (Difficult)

They require an exotic wildlife permit from the PA Game Commission. However, they are almost impossible to get. You have to have 2 years of experience from an approved facility, and the Game Commission does not have very many approved facilities. You would also need to keep it outside in a locked cage that is built to the correct specifications.


Rhode Island – Legal


Private persons seeking private ownership can own exotic animals – and animals that are neither domestic or native – with an exotic animal possession permit.

Examples of exotic foxes: fennec fox (Vulpes zerda), swift fox (Vulpes velox), arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus).


South Carolina – Illegal

(SC) 47-5-50. Prohibition on sale of wild carnivores as pets; sale of domesticated ferrets.

(A) No carnivores, which normally are not domesticated, may be sold as pets in this State. [This section does not apply to domesticated ferrets.]

A. All wild , feral or exotic animals, capable of carrying or transmitting diseases reportable in regulation 27-1111.

In addition to a CVI, also meet any health requirements for these diseases imposed upon domestic livestock unless otherwise noted or waived by the State Veterinarian, and must have necessary approval from other concerned state agencies.
B. Each such animal must be individually and permanently identified.
C. Each such animal must also have an entry permit issued by the State Veterinarian.

The CVI must be accompanied by a rabies vaccination certificate, which properly identifies the animal. A CVI/HP shall not be issued, if:
(a) the canine/feline originated within an area under quarantine for rabies; or
(b) the canine/feline has been exposed to rabies; or
(c) the canine/feline has not been vaccinated against rabies in the past
12 months”

As far as I know you will not be able to receive a permit for a fennec fox for pet purposes so therefore fennec foxes are illegal to sell, buy and import.

South Dakota – Legal, with permit

A permit is required to possess or import any non-domestic mammal. Also, you will need to have all animals inspected by a veterinarian

For more information, contact the South Dakota fish and wildlife service.


Tennessee – Legal

Under Type II of the TN Exotic Animal Laws, you may not legally own a native species. This would include Red Foxes and Grey Foxes. They are outright illegal to own. Arctic and Fennec foxes on the other hand are not native to Tennessee and therefore are legal to own without permit.

Texas – Illegal

Fennec Fox pet can only be owned with a fur-bearing animal permit or an educational display permit.



Utah – Illegal as pets


R657-3-24. Classification and Specific Rules for Mammals.

(iii) Fennec, (Vulpes zerda) family Canidae is prohibited for collection, importation and possession;

R657-3-20. Collection, Importation or Possession for Scientific or Educational Use.


Vermont – Illegal

Only for scientific research or educational purposes with a permit.

Virginia – Legal

Exotic fox species require a special permit.

Virgina state laws.

Washington – Illegal

fennec fox pet

West Virginia – Illegal

Wisconsin – Legal

You will need to acquire a license.

Wyoming – Illegal

Fennec fox pet foxes may not be imported and possessed because they “pose a threat to Wyoming’s native foxes in the form of possible hybridization, competition, disease or parasitism.”