Canada is a dazzling country in North America, full of natural wonders. It is famous for its scenic beauty, stunning landscape, northern lights, ice hockey, maple syrup, national park, Niagra falls, and delicious food. The list of things Canada is famous for goes on and on.
And let’s not forget that Canadian people must be one of the friendliest and most polite people you’ll ever meet, making it one of the safest countries in the world.
However, suppose you’re visiting Canada or even planning to settle there. In that case, you should try to learn its laws and regulations because chances are high that you are breaking Canadian law without even realizing it.
There are many strange laws worldwide, in counties such as Switzerland, Italy, Australia, the USA, and Singapore. Likewise, Canada also has its share of quirky and peculiar laws. We will soon read about some of the weird laws in Canada.
And while reading through some of the old laws, you would probably gasp and even ask yourself, “Can this be true?” “What could be the reason behind this law? “
The quirky laws include ‘not taking a bandage off in public,’ ‘building snowmen’ in such a manner that it is ‘not greater than 30 inches in length,’ and ‘not being able to pet rats.’
Remember: Most of these laws do not exist anymore, are no longer practiced, or are to be updated soon.
Here are the 10 Weird Laws in Canada:-
1. Dragging a Dead Horse Down the Street is Illegal
Yes, you heard it right. A law in Toronto states that it is illegal to drag a dead horse down Yonge street on Sundays.
However, it is legal on other days, making the law seem bizarre and making it one of Canada’s weird laws. So, try a different day if you wish to drag your dead horse down the street and not end up behind bars.
2. Impersonating to be a Witch is a Punishable Crime
Until 2018, Canadian law stated that pretending to be a witch was illegal. Practicing witchcraft was not a criminal offense but pretending to practice witchcraft and deceiving and exploiting the gullibility of the commoners was.
As per Section 365 of the Canadian criminal code,
Everyone who deceitfully
- pretends to exercise or to use any witchcraft, sorcery, enchantment, or conjuration,
- undertakes, for consideration, to tell fortunes, or
- Pretends from his skill in or knowledge of an occult or crafty science to discover where or in what manner anything that is supposed to have been stolen or lost may be found,
is guilty of an offense punishable on summary conviction.”
An Ontario woman faced charges of faking witchcraft just days before the law was removed from the criminal code.
Fortunately, the ‘House of Commons passed Bill C-51 in December 2018, which repealed Section 365.So now, if you want to dress up as a witch or a wizard on Halloween, you probably would not be penalized for that.
3. It’s Illegal to Bring Llamas into National Park
According to the Canadian national parks guide,
“No person shall
(a) bring into or keep in a park any cattle, sheep, pigs, goats, or live poultry;
(b) bring into or keep in a park any horses, donkeys, or mules except for their recreational use or by a license issued to them under the National Parks of Canada Businesses Regulations; or
(c) bring into or keep in a park any llamas except by a license issued to them under the canadian national parks guide Businesses Regulation.”
So, if you want to avoid evictions, tickets, or in more serious cases, court appearances or large fines, it’s better to keep your farm animals at home.
Just another weird law in Canada.
4. More Than Two Garage Sales Per Year is Illegal
In Toronto municipal code govern every aspect of a person’s day-to-day life, even the simplest things like ‘garage sales.’
According to the Toronto municipal code, it is illegal for residents to hold too many garage sales.
Property owners are allowed to have only two garage sales each year. And each garage sale should last for only two successive days. Once the sale is over, all signs of sales advertising must be removed.
Trying to get rid of your junk? Gather your junk all at once before you host a garage sale because you will only be getting two passes a year.
5. Climbing Trees is Illegal in Oshawa
Who could know that climbing a tree might be a legal offense? Yes, it is so in Oshawa.
According to the city bylaws,
“No person shall interfere with a tree or part of a tree located on municipal property, including but not limited to attaching, affixing or placing upon any object or thing to a tree or part of a tree, and climbing the tree.”
It is so disheartening that the people in Oshawa would never know the thrill of climbing a tree and enjoying the view from there or the joy of having tree houses.
Suggested reading– Fascinating facts about the Drinking Age in Canada
6. It is Illegal to Wear T-shirts by Taxi Drivers in Halifax
As odd as it may sound, taxi drivers in Halifax have a very strict dress code ( and you thought only your school had one?).
According to Halifax’s Regional Municipality Bylaws for Taxis and Limousines,
Drivers are required to wear a
“shirt or military type blouse with collar and sleeves, ankle-length trousers or dress shorts are worn within at least three inches of the knee.
They should always keep their clothing in clean conditions, have to wear shoes and socks, keep their attire in, and absolutely CAN NOT wear a t-shirt.”
Too much work if you want to earn your livelihood as a driver. It has to be one of the weirdest laws in Canada.
7. It’s Illegal to Pick Trilliums in Ontario
Trillium grandiflorum, also known as the ‘white trillium or great white trillium,’ or ‘wood lily,’ is a small three-petalled perennial flower found in many parts of Ontario and Nova Scotia.
Did you know Trillium has been the provincial floral emblem in Ontario since 1937? This is why the Trillium flower appears on the provincial government’s logo.
There are so many reasons why people in Ontario cherish this lovely flower.
However, if you’re visiting Ontario and happen to see a trillium flower, enjoy its beauty from a distance and DO NOT try to bring them home as a souvenir.
Picking a trillium in Ontario throughout provincial parks and conservation areas is a punishable offense.
But you can pick as many trilliums as you want if you grow them in your garden.
Even though it is a little strange, it has to be the most reasonable law in Canada, as trillium flowers hold a special place in the heart of Canadians.
8. It is Illegal to Swear in Toronto Parks
According to the Canadian government
“While in a park, no person shall indulge in riotous, boisterous, violent, threatening, or illegal conduct or use profane or abusive language.”
So the next time you want to let your anger out or have an argument with your friend, Toronto parks may not be the best place to do that unless you want to break Canadian laws.
This law tops all the other weird laws in Canada.
9. It is Illegal to Scare the Queen in Canada
In Canada, it is illegal to startle the Queen. There’s one very specific law in a separate section of the criminal code that says
“You’re not allowed to intentionally frighten or alarm the Queen or do any act that is intended or is likely to cause bodily harm to the Queen. Breaking the law could result in imprisonment for up to 14 years as it is considered a serious criminal offense.”
This law dates back to ‘Britain’s treason Act of 1842’. This law was created after a British man pointed a gun at the Queen without firing it.
It is offense punishable now, Having second thoughts about pranking the Queen now?
10. It is Illegal to Eat Ice-cream in Ottawa
Who doesn’t love having a scoop of their favorite ice cream on a warm, sunny day? But be careful; you might break the law if you have ice cream on Bank street on Sundays. The reason is there to prevent any sick person from heat stroke increasing.
But is it legal to eat ice cream on any other day? YES. And on any other street? HELL YES.
This law must be one of Canada’s ‘weirdest’ laws.
There are many more bizarre laws in Canada, such as in Kanata, Ontario, ‘you cannot paint your garage door purple,’ but other colors are fine. ‘It is illegal to paint a wooden ladder in Alberta,’ and ‘you cannot make payments with too many coins.’
However, we should remember that most of these weird laws in Canada came into existence many decades ago. And many of these laws are no longer practiced in Canada but being aware of the laws does no harm. Many of the old laws are to be updated soon.