What is your interpretation of "personal pleasure, companionship or protection"

Discussion in 'Local Chicken Laws & Ordinances (and how to change' started by aliciaslocomb, Jan 27, 2016.

  1. aliciaslocomb

    aliciaslocomb New Egg

    Jan 27, 2016
    We are trying to clarify a local ordinance, so I am asking for responses to the following question:

    Have chickens "extensively and historically" been kept for "personal pleasure, companionship or protection"?

    Thanks! - Alicia
  2. Pyxis

    Pyxis Hatchaholic Extrordinaire Premium Member

    Mar 27, 2012
    My Coop

    I'd say most people who are keeping chickens who are not big time egg and meat farms are keeping them for personal pleasure. We're not keeping them to make a profit, and we're not really farming them. They could also certainly be considered as companions - I know of several instances where they have been kept as therapy animals, and some people also keep them as house pets. So I would say, at least extensively, they are kept for pleasure. One would only need to visit this site to prove that :) As for protection, probably not. They really aren't guard animals.
  3. potato chip

    potato chip lunch-sharer

    The latter yes. As Pyxis said, backyard chooks are kept for personal pleasure and companionship, just like other pets.

    The "hard part" of meeting that definition is looking at the meaning of "extensively and historically". You'd need to look at the incidence of suburban chicken keeping to determine how "extensive" it is in your area. "Historically" might have had a better chance of being established in the 1940s (or whenever) than it is now, but again, you'd need statistics and information as to the pattern of backyard chicken keeping over time. When I was a kid, it was IMO "extensive" because everybody had chickens. Now, in my experience, few do.

    If the crux of the exercise is to show that chickens are pets and not farm animals, I'd be digging out all the info you can find about the incidence of backyard keeping in your area. My gut reaction - no, "extensively and historically" chickens are farm animals.
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon

    As the question is phrased, no they have not. They've historically been livestock. Just cause they're pets now doesn't mean you can re-write history and say they've been pets or companions in years past.
  5. memphis

    memphis Overrun With Chickens

    Aug 6, 2012
    X2. Donrae is correct.
  6. jak2002003

    jak2002003 Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 24, 2009
    Historically people keep chickens for eggs and meat.
  7. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    I'd leave the issue of interpretations to all the wonderful lawyers ([​IMG]). they make big bucks out of semantics!

  8. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 16, 2010
    NEK, VT
    "Extensively and Historically" chickens are livestock. There is no getting around that. For the last decade and society being so far from it's food that when it gets near them now they are pets is not congruent with historical relations of people and food supply.
  9. realsis

    realsis Crazy for Silkies

    Jan 17, 2013
    hi, I think it's saying basically chickens can't be slaughtered. NO meat birds. If they are for eggs and pets then ok.

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