Keeping other animals as pets

You’re not allowed to keep any animal you’d like in Halifax (or Dartmouth, or Bedford, or anywhere within the municipal boundaries). Plus the rules are inconsistent within the Halifax Regional Municipality. You'll need to check what is permitted in your neighbourhood.

You can keep the following animals according to Halifax’s animal bylaw.

  • snakes that are not prohibited
  • iguanas and other lizards that are not prohibited
  • grandfathered prohibited animals (owned before April 1, 2008 and licensed before June 30, 2008)
  • rabbits
  • rodents

As the owner of one of these types of animals, you are responsible for: 

  • keeping your animal enclosed in an escape-proof building, aquarium, pen, cage, or container when on your premises
  • securely tethered on a leash, harness, chain or other device when off your premises
  • preventing your animal from attacking a person or another animal
  • ensure that your animal does not damage public property or property owned by another individual
  • immediately removing defecation from public property or property owned by someone else

Pet owners found to be in violation of the bylaw may:

  • be issued a warning notice by a bylaw officer
  • be issued a Summary Offense Ticket of $237.50 or more
  • face prosecution in a court of law
  • have their animals taken from them by Animal Services

If you aren’t sure if a particular animal is allowed in the Halifax region, contact a Customer Service Centre and ask.