Monkeypox is a foreign animal disease that was introduced into the U.S. in 2003 by the importation of pet rodents from Africa. Monkeypox infections in people can mimic smallpox, leading to concern about a possible bioterrorism event. Although no additional human or animal cases have been documented in the U.S. since 2003, this information is provided for preparedness for further outbreaks, and to help provide guidance for investigation and management of possible new cases.

Current and past information about monkeypox is available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including federal regulations about rodent movement.

To learn more about other animal-related human health issues, visit the zoonoses main page.