Transporting Horses

Transportation Regulations

In February 2020, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency put new regulations in place for the transportation of animals, including equines. These regulations will be amended in February 2022. Please vist this link for 2020 information and this link for amended 2022 regulations.

*Note the 2022 amendments state “Horses must not be without feed and water for longer than 28 hours”. In most cases 28 hours without feed or water is much too long of time. For most long hauls is it a common practice to keep hay in front of the horses at all times and water every 4 to 6 hours, depending on weather and temperature.

Contact the CFIA directly if you have general inquiries at 1-800-442-2342 (Canada and U.S.), or email by at [email protected].

The Government of Alberta has also noted that the National Farm Animal Care Council (NFACC) is currently working on updating the NFACC Transport Code, which includes equines and will likely address many of the concerns/questions members have. This process was started in November 2018, there is a public comment period from April – September 2020 and the project will be completed by Spring of 2023.



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Transportation within Alberta

In Alberta, horses must be transported in accordance with the Livestock Identification and Commerce Act (LICA). Under LICA, the term “horses” is used to include members of the Equidae family such as horses, donkeys and their crosses. Depending on the purpose of the transportation, horses may require an Alberta Livestock Manifest, Livestock Permit or Special Permit. Alberta’s delegated authority, Livestock Identification Services Ltd. (LIS), is responsible for all transportation documentation under LI

Transportation within Alberta

A livestock manifest is not required to transport a horse within Alberta unless the horse is being transported to an inspection site or for sale or slaughter. This includes transport to a country sale, auction market, livestock assembling station or abattoir.  A livestock manifest should not be used if the livestock is accompanied by a livestock permit or a special permit.

The owner or dealer, transporter and the person receiving the livestock are each required to complete their Parts of the livestock manifest and to retain their copy of the livestock manifest for 10 years.  If livestock is being transported for sale the owner must complete the Livestock Security Interest Declaration on the livestock manifest (Part F) or a separate Livestock Security Interest Declaration and provide the Declaration to the person paying the sale proceeds to the owner.

Where livestock of more than one owner is transported or driven together, separate livestock manifests or permits must accompany the livestock. The livestock of each owner must be distinctively identified to readily distinguish the livestock belonging to one owner from the livestock belonging to other owners.

Please review the downloadable file for instructions on to how to complete the Alberta Livestock Manifest.

Alberta Livestock Manifest books are supplied by LIS and are available throughout the province from LIS Field Offices, auction markets and ARD Field Offices.

For more information regarding the Alberta Livestock Manifest or movement requirements under the Livestock Identification and Commerce Act, contact your local LIS Livestock Inspector or the LIS Head Office toll free at 1-866-509-2088. For more information on LIS and the services they provide, please visit their website at


Transportation within Canada

Horses being transported or driven to another province must be inspected and must have one of four required permits. These permits have specific expiry dates.   Contact your local LIS Field Office to arrange to have your horses inspected and a livestock permit or special permit issued prior to transporting the livestock out of Alberta.

Transportation across borders

Canada – United States Border Regulations

Livestock Permit

A livestock permit is required for cattle and horses to leave inspection sites where livestock has been inspected.  It permits the transport of one or more horses out of Alberta one time only. This permit expires on the earliest of the following: seven days from the date of issue; when the horse is delivered to its destination; or, when an inspection is required. Cost of this permit is $2 per horse.

Annual Horse Permit

Allows the transport of one or more horse out of Alberta more than once in a calendar year. This permit expires on December 31 of the year in which the permit was issued or if there is a change of ownership within the same calendar year. Cost of this permit is $10 per horse.

Rodeo and Exhibition Permit

Allows the transport of a rodeo or exhibition horse out of Alberta more than once in a calendar year. As with the Annual Horse Permit, this permit expires on December 31 of the year in which it was issued or if there is a change of ownership within the same calendar year. Cost of this permit is $10 per horse.

Lifetime Horse Permit

Allows the transport of one horse out of Alberta more than once during the lifetime of the horse or the time the person who is issued the permit owns the horse. This permit is valid for the life of the horse under the possession of the owner who purchased the permit. The permit is not valid if the horse changes ownership or dies. Cost of this permit is $30 per horse. Information on these permits can be obtained from Livestock Identification Services.

Transporting horses into Alberta from another jurisdiction – the sections of LICA regarding livestock permits and livestock manifests do not apply to persons who transport horses into or through Alberta from an originating point outside of Alberta if the originating jurisdiction requires the horse to be accompanied with documentation to be transported out of that jurisdiction to the horse’s destination, and the horse is accompanied with the documentation.

This exemption which allows the horse to be transported into or through Alberta on its out of province documentation expires when the horse stops in Alberta for a purpose other than rest, or is required to be inspected in Alberta.

If a horse from out-of-province stops in Alberta for a purpose other than rest, the location where the horse stops is considered to be its originating point and a livestock permit or a Livestock Manifest is then required to be transported within or outside of Alberta.

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