Ottawa, June 29 2022 - The federal government released a statement about banning the importation of dogs from all over the world.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is implementing a new measure to protect Canadians and their pets, and to reduce the risk of introducing dog rabies (rabies caused by canine-variant viruses) into Canada.
As of September 28, 2022, World Rabies Day, commercial dogs from countries at high-risk for dog rabies will no longer be permitted entry into Canada. Commercial dogs can include, but are not limited to dogs for resale, adoption, fostering, breeding, show or exhibition, research, and other purposes.
Veterinarians without Borders applauds the efforts of the Federal Government in protecting Canadians from deadly rabies, a cause that VWB is also widely involved in, especially in our Northern Animal Health Initiative. However, this comes at a time when there are significant efforts to evacuate as many dogs out of Ukraine as possible, as the war rages on. With no end in site, a deadline of September 28 creates incredible urgency.
Additionally, we anticipate other international rescues will work to import as many dogs as possible before the deadline, resulting in less homes for Ukrainian dogs fleeing the war. This is speculation, but there seems to be little other recourse except to exclude Canada from countries the rescues export to.
"Many people have moved on from the Ukrainian crisis, because the news cycle has moved on to other issues, so donations have slowed, despite dwindling supplies and the growing need," Charmaine Brett, Executive Director at VWB/VSF Canada says.
"We are working with front line partners that are on the ground every day, risking their lives to make sure these dogs aren't forgotten, that they don't starve to death as their guardians are forced to flee."
VWB partners are facing logistical complications getting animals out of the country with petrol shortages, destroyed infrastructure and missing documentation for animals medical records to be able to cross borders. VWB has deployed a vet to Romania, in a key location where Ukraine animals are being funnelled to.
Donations are desperately needed to keep animals alive as we work to get them vaccinated and out of the country as soon as possible. Donate directly to Ukraine efforts today.
A full list of countries is as follows:
Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi
Cameroon, Central Africa Republic, Chad, Comoros, Côte D'Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti
Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Eswatini (Swaziland), Ethiopia
Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau
Lesotho, Liberia, Libya
Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Mozambique
Namibia, Niger, Nigeria
Republic of Congo, Rwanda
Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan
Tanzania (including Zanzibar), Togo, Tunisia
Americas and Caribbean
Belize, Bolivia, Brazil
Ecuador, El Salvador
Asia and the Middle East, Eastern Europe
Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan
Bangladesh, Belarus, Brunei
Cambodia, China (excluding Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan)
India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq
Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan
Malaysia, Moldova, Mongolia, Myanmar (Burma)
Nepal, North Korea
Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Syria
Tajikistan, Thailand, Türkiye, Turkmenistan
Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan
This list is reviewed regularly and is subject to change.