Done everything I can and Not getting ANYWHERE!


In the Brooder
9 Years
Feb 25, 2010
1.9 Acres Ohio
Over the past 3 months, I have followed the advice in the beginning of the "Raising Chickens for Dummies" book about checking with local laws, zoning, ect. I live in the country, 2 miles outside of city limits. But, I wanted to make sure I was doing everything by the book. 2 miles from my house, I noticed a chicken coop, so I went up to the door and asked them some questions about any laws in the area. Older couple, been raising chickens for years, never even thought to check into laws He says " Now Young Lady, you get yoursef some hens, and don't be worrying yourself about dem laws, as long as you keep it clean, and bribe your neighbors with fresh eggs, won't be no problems

So, I contacted my local township office. They acted very confused by my questions, and gave me contact info for the township zoning official. Contacted him, he wasnt sure why I was checking into laws, since I was outside of city limits. He says that as long as I'm not trying to start a chicken business, not to worry about it. No need to get building permits for the coop, ect. But just to be sure, to contact the Extension office. Did that, they said, again, as long as I wasnt starting a business, no need for permits, ect. Just to be friendly with the neighbors and let them know I was getting chickens. My neighbors houses are at least 3 acres from where my chickens are going to be, they are all thrilled with the idea as long as I share eggs and keep it clean. One even wants the chicken poo for her compost pile.

Has anyone had any experiance in the country in Ohio with chickens? Especially in Henry County? I have a hard time just going off of what people tell me. I like to have everything in writing lol No one could send me copies of local laws in writing when it comes to small flocks, or even direct me to where to find the stuff. My next option is local 4-H clubs
Well, here it would go by your township ordinances. As long as there isn't anything in the ordinances that says you CAN'T then you CAN.
not sure why you're pressing this issue? You've already contacted the appropriate zoning officials and have been told as long as you're not starting a commercial hatchery or chicken farm you're okay. They've already given you your answer, multiple times. You're allowed to have chickens for personal use.

I grew up in ohio, unless youre in city limits, or town limits, you can have live stock. The only thing they REALLY get testy about is large livestock like horses, the zoning laws, especially in union and deleware counties are VERY specific about horses.

You're fine. Get your chickens. There is no zoning issue for you in your circumstance. Start a poultry farm and THEN you have some zoning issues to deal with.

The AP is right- with zoning laws the lack of a law regarding a specific thing means it is not governed by the zoning laws at all and allowed. Thats how I am allowed to have chickens IN my village ON my village lot in Upstate NY. lol. There's nothing saying I can, but equally nothing saying I cant. So... chickens it is!
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I wold think you would be governed by the township you live in. Check to see it they have a website and then look for the livestock or pets section. When I looked into starting my flock the only restriction was the min. acerage you needed to keep livestock (chickens fell under that rule). We had no trouble meeting the minimum which was 3 acres and even though my coop was a little larger than the size allowed without a permit we built it to movable - would need a big trailer and alot of people but still movable. I would document the date you called, who you called and what you were told and keep that. Good luck and enjoy!
Chicken Fruit: I'm pressing the issue cause I don't want to get the chickens, raise them, just to find out I have to get rid of them. And I never seemed to get a straight answer, just "well, I don't think so" no one seemed positive, just willing to pass me on to someone else. And, my biggest fault is over anaylising EVERYTHING lol Thankfully, I have a wonderful understanding husband who just lets me think over something simple for months before coming to the same conclusion I did in the beginning.

fasbendera: That is a great suggestion for a direct question to ask them. I never thought about min. acr. I have just under 2. Thanks! And I did document who I talked to, their response, time, date, ect.
It is very common in the rules of construction of zoning laws for there to be a statement that says that if not specificially mentioned as a permitted activity, that it is not permitted. So, you need to check the administrative details of your zoning code--this would be in the very early chapter that set up the structure of the code, not in the details that deal with each different zoning district.

Unless one is within the corporate bounds of a defined governmental body, they have no jurisdiction over you.
You want to get your chicken ASAP if you live 2 mile outside of town limits. I don't know about Ohio laws but in NC towns and city has a 1 mile UOD. This was my case, they kept moving the town limits until now i'm inside their 1 mile limit. Since I start having chickens before they moved the town limits due to annex, I am grandfathered in. The town just past and ordinance to allow 6 chicken on a 1/4 acre or more doesn't help. I have 24 and plan on keeping all.
When I had woodducks I had to have a state and federal permit to have them. In order to get the permit I had to have a paper written by the township superviser that there were no ordinances against it. Maybe you could do something like that to set your mind at ease - then you'd have paperwork to back you up.

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