It is illegal to keep monkeys and other primates as pets in B.C. They are listed as Controlled Alien Species under provincial legislation.
Monkeys are social and live in groups with their families. Removing babies or adults from this group is distressing for all the individuals. When choosing a pet, people often don’t think about how big the animals will get and how long they will live. When the care responsibilities become unmanageable, the animals are often surrendered to a shelter or refuge – if these locations are not already full.
The BC SPCA does not support keeping or breeding exotic animals as pets due to their unique physical and emotional needs. These animals often suffer in care because of their specialized needs. Exotic pets are often taken from the wild, and may suffer or die during capture or transport. When people capture animals from the wild, they also disturb fragile ecosystems and threaten species’ survival.