Urban Chicken Laws and Ordinances
What follows are laws from various US cities regarding the keeping of chickens.
Aiken, SC. Chickens must be penned, and the pen kept 40 ft. from neighboring residences.
Albuquerque, NM. Zoning allows the raising of unlimited chickens if penned at least 20 feet from neighboring dwellings.
Anaheim, CA. Can keep 3 chickens on a 5,000 sq.ft. lot, 6 chickens on a 10,000 sq.ft. lot.
Austin, TX. Up to 10 chickens per household allowed, but keep in an enclosure that’s 50 ft. away from neighbors.
Bakersfield, CA. Municipal code 6.08.010 Any chickens must be kept securely enclosed in a yard or pen at all times. A handcrafted chicken coop is perfect for you!
Boston, MA. All residential zones in Boston forbid “auxilliary keeping of animals”, which includes chickens and other livestock.
Burlington, VT. Up to 3 chickens per household.
Casper, WY. Chickens are sometimes allowed. For example, if your children are taking part in a 4-H project or you are learning to bake cakes and need to have a good supply of eggs!
Chicago, IL. Can keep as many chickens as you like but only if they will be your pets. You are not allowed to keep them for slaughter. You must also keep them penned.
Clive, IA. No more than 12 chickens on lots less than 1.5 acres. Must be 150 feet from homes and 50 feet from property line.
Corvallis, OR. Unlimited chickens allowed. No roosters though. Your Chickens must be penned, that’s what our chicken coops are for!
Davenport, IA. Chickens not allowed, unless property is zoned as agricultural.
Des Moines, IA. If you have 1 acre, you can have up to 30 chickens; lots 1 acre or larger, up to 50 chickens. You are not allowed to keep them in the front yard, and must be at least 25′ from neighbors.
Detroit, MI. Not allowed sorry. No “farm animals.” Is a chicken with a name that sits on your knee in the backyard a farm animal?
Falls Church, VA. Chickens not allowed.
Gresham, OR. Unlimited chickens allowed, provided your chicken coop is kept 100ft. from neighbors.
Houston, TX. Up to 30 chickens allowed. Chickens must be kept 100 feet from neighboring properties.
Huntsville, AL. Chickens must be kept 150 ft. from the neighbors.
Johnston, IA. “No chickens shall be allowed to run at large within the corporate limits of the city…” That means a chicken coop would work just fine.
Lawrenceville, GA. No chickens allowed. However, apparently this law is only enforced if someone complains. So maybe speak to you neighbors first to check they are happy.
Little Rock, AR. Up to four chickens allowed, a perfect fit for your chicken coop!
Los Angeles, CA. You can keep as many as you like but 20 feet away of owner’s residence, and must be at least 35 feet from any other dwelling.
Madison, WI. Up to four chickens per household allowed. You are not allowed to let your chickens roam free. Keep your chicken coop 25 ft. from your neighbors. There is a $6 annual permit required.
Miami, FL. May have up to 15 hens, no roosters. Must be contained at least 100 feet from neighboring structures.
Minneapolis, MN. Unlimited. Applicant needs consent from 80 percent of neighbors within 100 feet of real estate. Chickens must be penned.
Mobile, AL. You can keep as may hens as you like here but no breeding allowed so definitely no to roosters!
Mountain View, CA. Up to 4 hens without a permit can be kept. Keep them 25 ft. from residences. Within 25 ft. is OK with written consent from neighbors. No roosters.
Nampa ID. You can keep 3 chickens here if they are kept 50 ft. from neighbors. You need a permit which costs $50. No roosters.
New York City. You can keep as many chickens as you like. You have to have a permit for your chickens. Must be kept clean. No roosters.
Oswego, NY. Can only have chickens that were “grandfathered.” Not sure what this means…
Ponca City, OK. Chickens must be kept 100 ft. from neighbor’s houses.
Portland, Oregon. You are allowed three hens without a permit. Roosters are not allowed. You need to apply for a permit to keep chickens. Permit for more costs $31. Any coops must be kept more than 25ft. from residences.
Portland, ME. Up to six hens within city limits. Roosters not allowed.
Rochester, NY requires a $25 license for keeping pet chickens; in the city limits, no roosters and no commercial breeding allowed. Coops must be kept 25 feet away from houses. Coops must provide a minimum of four square feet of room per bird; the chicken coop and run together measures 26.75sqft or 6.7sqft per chicken if you have 4 chickens in the chicken coop. Your coop set-up must be inspected before adding chickens, to make sure it provides enough space and healthy conditions for the birds. Licensing and inspection is done through the Rochester City Police Department (Sgt. DeAngelo). The online city code which outlines this can be found in Chapter 30, Section 19.
Round Rock, TX. Up to 5 chickens if your chicken pen is 25 ft. away from neighbor’s residences. If the pen is 50 ft. away, you can have 10 chickens.
San Antonio, TX. Up to 5 chickens, any gender, per household. Must keep in a chicken coop, 20 feet from any other dwelling.
San Jose, CA. You can keep up to 6 chickens at least 20 ft. from residences. Up to 4 chickens 15 ft. away from residences. No roosters.
Santa Fe, NM. You are allowed as many chickens as you like here.
Santa Rosa, CA. May have up to 25 chickens. No chickens in residential areas zoned R1, R2 or PRC.
Seattle, WA. Can have a total of three chickens; more if the lot is large.
Sioux City, IA. A Permit is required here. No roosters over 4 months old. No more than 50 birds in total. Must be kept at least 25′ from the home and at least 150′ from neighboring homes.
Spokane, WA. Up to three chickens allowed here.
Syracuse, NY. Chickens are sometimes allowed here. It depends on your zoning. But definitely no roosters!
Topeka, KS. Unlimited chickens allowed. Your chickens must be 50 feet from any neighbors house.
Urbandale, IA. Your chickens must be kept at least 150 feet from any dwelling.
Waukee, IA. No chickens shall be kept within the city limits of the City, except in A-1 District or A-2 Annexation District on tracts of one (1) or more acres.
West Des Moines, IA. Chickens must be kept in a chicken coop.
Westfield, MA. Chickens not allowed.
Windsor Heights, IA. No more than 2 chickens allowed they must be kept in a chicken coop and run at all times. They must be at least 25′ from neighboring residences, and may not be in the front yard.