Primate Legality: Can You Have a Monkey as a Pet?

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Keeping Monkeys as Pets

There are about 10 monkey breeds that make good pets. Primates are intellectual social animals that have minds of their own irrespective of how you cultured them.

Therefore, the best types of monkey for a pet should be easy to handy, and the safest to own.

Usually, individuals will keep one of the 10 best pet monkey breeds as a pet. To be clear, due to international regulations on exotic pet trading and ownership.

However, the legality of possessing these primates is questionable in some states and circumstances.

Some species of monkeys, for instance, are protected by law, but individuals who have bred them in captivity after the regulations were enacted may be able to do so.

Having an illegal pet is, needless to say, asking for problems and adds to the global extinction crisis.


Some states and Cities in the US and the Legality of Monkeys as Pets

Can you have a monkey as a pet in Florida?

You can purchase some breeds of monkeys and own them as pets in Florida except Chimp that’s a class 1 wild animal.

Some monkeys that are legal in Florida include the Squirrel monkey breed, Macaques, and Capuchin, but you’d need a class 2 or 3 permits (exotic pet license) to have a monkey as a pet.


Can you have a monkey as a pet in Texas?

There are many legal exotic pets in Texas since there’s no need for a license to acquire class 3 animals, making Texas one of the best states to own pet monkeys without a problem.

You can own a capuchin monkey, a spider pet monkey, finger monkey pet, and others without restriction in Texas.

Macaque monkey personality and care

Can you own a monkey in Tennessee?

It’s legal to have monkeys as pets in Tennessee. Capuchin and squirrel monkeys are popular as pets in Tennessee and they do not require any permit to acquire and own them.

Other places pet monkeys are allowed in the US are Missouri, Alabama, Montana, Kansas, Nevada, Virginia, North Dakota, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Ohio, etc.


Can you have a monkey as a pet in California?

Primates are illegal to own as pets in California since they are considered a threat to public health and safety.

However, you can acquire a permit to own monkeys for research, and to keep them in the zoo.


Can you own a monkey in Arizona?

There are a few exotic pets you can own as pets in Arizona. Unfortunately, monkeys are illegal to acquire as pets in Arizona.


How Much Does a Monkey Cost to Buy and Maintained?

Owning a single monkey may cost anywhere from $4,000 to $75,000, depending on the species, and that sum is only expected to increase over time.

Given the financial commitment required, many people will automatically be disqualified from being able to own such a pet.

There are other expenses to think about. Having a habitat that is suitable for monkeys is essential.

Having a monkey in a city apartment would be like expecting a chimpanzee to navigate Manhattan’s crowded streets on its own.

That’s no place for a monkey to call home. Please accept my apologies, Ross. They are noisy, intelligent, and occasionally mischievous beings who require certain diets, climatic conditions, hiding places, and climbing surfaces.

Several thousand dollars extra will need to be spent on a monkey’s habitat, particularly if you choose one of the larger monkey types.

It’s important to remember that keeping one of these pets is a significant commitment in terms of both time and money.

Make sure you know what you’re getting into before you buy a monkey.

It’s not easy to do, but if you’re the right kind of person, it could be worth it.

If you decide that having a monkey is the right choice for you, you should think about the eight breeds we’ve talked about here.



Monkeys are social animals, so they make the best pets when they are with another monkey that gets along well with them.

Different kinds of monkeys need different kinds of care, space, food, and sometimes even things to play with.

It’s very important to learn everything you can about the type of monkey you want to adopt so you can meet its specific needs.

Monkeys are social animals like people, so they need a lot of quality social interaction which happens often.

If you don’t give your pet monkey enough time, love, and attention, it might do strange things to get your attention, like a scream, bite, or break things.