Bringing an African Rodent into the United States

A Gambian pouch rat curled up and asleep in a cage.

A restricted rodent: A Gambian pouched rat, Cricetomys gambianus. Photo courtesy “liftarn” of Wikimedia Commons.

A person may not import into the United States any live or dead rodent of African origin, including any rodents that were caught in Africa and then shipped directly to the United States or shipped to other countries before being imported to the United States. The ban also applies to rodents whose native habitat is in Africa, even if those rodents were born elsewhere. These animals may still be imported for scientific, exhibition, or educational purposes with a valid permit issued by CDC.

African Rodents Imported for Permitted Purposes

If you have questions about importing African rodents for scientific, exhibition, or educational purposes, contact