This Map Shows All The US States Where It’s Legal To Own A Kangaroo, For Some Reason

Whether you're at home or on the road, there's no excuse to miss AWOL ever again. Sign up to our newsletter, and follow us on Instagram.

There are cats and dogs, and then there are the weird and wonderful animals people keep as pets: snakes, budgies, the pony I saw being walked in suburban Sydney one time. And now a map has emerged of every US state where it’s legal to own a kangaroo — just in case you were wondering.

We’re not exactly sure why this map exists – it’s clearly not a good idea to keep a roo as a pet – but we’re just glad that it does.

You can see the map below (or a larger version here). In Wisconsin, West Virginia and South Carolina, it’s legal to own a kangaroo without a permit. It’s more common to need a permit, like in Washington and Texas. But, in news that will come as no surprise to anyone, it’s illegal to own a kangaroo as a pet in the majority of the United States of America.

Can You Own A Kangaroo As A Pet? You Sure Can In These US States

Kangaroo Ownership Legality map legend:

  • Without a permit (green)
  • With a permit (orange)
  • Illegal (red)

A few eagle-eyed animal lovers have pointed out that the map may not be totally up-to-date — Reddit user u/BlueGold noticed that, under Wisconsin State Legislature, you need a license to own wild animals, including kangaroos.

But that hasn’t stopped people from running wild with glee about their potential future as the proud owner of a kangaroo.


That’s great, but in the words of the great Australian icon Shannon Noll, “What about me?” In Australia, the only state where it’s legal to own a kangaroo is Victoria — as long as it’s not wild, and you have a licence.

The Northern Territory Government is also quite adamant that, just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. “Kangaroos and wallabies do not make good pets and you should never keep one,” the government states on its website.

It’s not fun for anyone to own a kangaroo — but maps are fun, and we have more of them! Check out this map that shows how different countries do Daylight Savings, which languages are easiest to learn, and more national animals and their conservation status.

(Lead image: Spitfire19 / Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 1.0))