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'Loonie' Canadian Laws You Might Be Tempted To Break

These are actual, government regulated laws.
Published August 18, 2023
weird canadian laws

This Kool FM feature is brought to you by Canadian Tire.

Have you heard about the Apology Act? It’s a real law and it’s just about the most Canadian law on record. It states that an apology is not an admission of guilt or fault, but yet an expression of sympathy or regret.

We never would have guessed such a thing was true, so we started researching other unique laws. From Halloween curfews to singing in public, these are some of the weird Canadian laws that still exist today.

1. In Port Coquitlam, it's illegal to own more than 4 pet rats at a time.

This is a simple method of pest control. Alberta takes this one step further, where ALL rats are considered pests and thus banned from the province. They consider rats (specifically Norwegian), “the most destructive creatures known to man.”

If laws limiting rats aren't an issue, be sure you check bylaws if you are a dog lover. In a lot of places, like Tay Township or Uxbridge, you're only allowed up to 2 dogs.

2. It's illegal to swear in a public park in Toronto, Ontario.  ****!

You may want to keep the language PG when strolling around Toronto’s public parks. If you run into an irritated by-law officer, they could slap you with a fine. That's because the Toronto Municipal Code states that "While in a park, no person shall indulge in riotous, boisterous, violent, threatening, or illegal conduct or use profane or abusive language." In case you were wondering, it also says you can't be nude.

RELATED: Can you answer these 20 Canadian trivia questions?

3. There are Halloween curfews in Bathurst, New Brunswick.

It used to be you couldn't trick-or-treat in Bathurst, New Brunswick after 7 PM or if you were over 14. Luckily for Bathurst trick-or-treaters, they recently adjusted the laws to no trick-or-treating past 8 PM or for anybody over 16.

4. No b*tches on the street in New Maryland, New Brunswick!

In the Village of New Maryland, "No owner of a b*tch shall suffer or permit such b*tch to be upon the street or in any public place while the bitch is in heat."

The good news is, they're talking about dogs. The better news is, they aren't as strict as the Town of Tisdale where dogs have to stay housed at all times while in heat.

5. Stop teasing the cats in Alberta and Newfoundland!

In Red Deer, Alberta, and Gander, NFL there are Cat Bylaws. These bylaws have rules about not letting cats run at large and not interfering with animal control trying to capture a cat. They also say you can't tease cats ... at least when they are in traps.

In Gander, you'll also be charged $20 if your cat damages someone's plant.

6. Sorry, we can't take all of your change ...

In Canada, there are rules about how many of each coin can be used in a single purchase. You are limited to:

  • $5 in nickels
  • $10 in dimes and quarters
  • $25 in loonies
  • $40 in toonies
  • $40 in $5 bills

7. Canada has laws specifically about stealing oysters

Section 323 of the Criminal Code talks solely about the theft of oysters. You may want to read it if you're planning an oyster heist in the near future.

8. Better pay that bicycle licensing fees ...

In Snow Lake, Manitoba, you have to pay a $2 licensing fee for bicycles and tricycles every year. Think you can skip it? There's a risk that your bike will get impounded.

9. Don't throw tacks on the highway

It isn't the actual law that is weird in this case. It's the fact that it had to even be written into law.

In Gander, it's illegal to throw tacks on a highway ...

10. Myers Lake is a no-singing zone.

In 2018, Muskoka Lake by-laws were updated to make Myers Lake a no-human-noise zone. That means no singing, whistling, yelling, hooting, yodeling, and more.

11. No Dualling Bagpipes

In Victoria, BC, street entertainers who play the bagpipes can not perform "at the same time as another street entertainer whose performance includes bagpipes."

Dualling chalk artists are also prohibited.

Weird, Silly, And Out-dated Canadian Laws

There you have it. These are just some of the weird Canadian laws that still remain across the country. There used to be plenty more, such as:

  • Alberta making it illegal to set fire to people's wooden legs
  • Canada making it illegal to sell crime comics, challenge people to a duel, and practice witchcraft
  • Halifax prohibiting taxi drivers from wearing t-shirts

But most of these laws have been repealed over the years.

Still, it's always a good idea to do a quick search before heading out on any Cross Country adventures!

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