If you want to know whether you can own a capybara or not, you will have to check your state and local regulations. Some states prohibit owning capybaras while some allow it.

own a capybara pet

But keep in mind that even if your state allows keeping capybaras as pets, there may be other regulations in your county, city or even HOA. Your state department of Fish and Wildlife will be able to guide you through the current legislation.

Before considering owning a capybara, make sure you have the required space and conditions for these giant rodents. Keeping a capybara pet is not easy and plenty of them end up abandoned. 

Can You Own a Capybara in California?

Capybaras are illegal to own in California. In fact, California is one of the strictest states when it comes to owning wild animals, gerbils or ferrets are not allowed either.

They are found in four zoos but you won’t find any capybara on a farm as the Californian authorities consider they could become invasive if they eventually get out in the wild.

Capybaras in Texas

It is legal to own capybaras in Texas and the lone star state is home to many farms with capybaras. It is surprisingly easy to buy capybaras in Texas, as the state has no restrictions whatsoever.

Capybara Legal States

Other than Texas, there are a few other states where owning a capybara pet is legal, most notably Washington, North Carolina, Arizona, Arkansas, Indiana, Florida, and Tennessee. Laws and regulations are updated at all times and we can’t guarantee that this information will be accurate at all times, but it is accurate for 2023.

Also bear in mind that while in these states it is legal to own a capybara, in most of them you will still need to get a permit to own a wild animal so it is best to contact your local Fish and Wildlife Department to get accurate and updated information.

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