Follow our adventures

Follow our adventures as we raise a tiny flock of chickens in suburban Bexley, Ohio.
Our chicken bloggers include Tami Taylor, a Welsummer, and Tyra, a Jersey Giant.
RIP, Betty, Joan, Sally & Peggy.

Getting Legal in Bexley

Keeping chickens legally in Bexley got a half-step more complicated in December, 2010.  It's no longer the wild-west: Bexley has two exceedingly reasonable & relevant ordinances regarding chickens.

Read the Bexley ordinance details below (exact wording at bottom).

Here are the basics from the two ordinances:
  • Within 60 days of obtaining the chickens, apply for a permit with the City of Bexley (no fee).  
    • Call the city and ask to talk to Amy our Animal Control officer
    • She'll set up an appointment to come check out your coop and chickens (which means you'll need to have chickens and a coop by then)
    • She'll bring the paperwork, which consists of a one-page 4 or 5 question document
    • She'll check out the coop, make sure you have the number of chickens you say you have, and make sure they're reasonably well cared for & secure
  • No roosters -- If you mistakenly end up with a male chick, you'll need to have a plan for how to find him a new home by the time he starts crowing.
  • No more than 5 total animals (dogs, cats, chickens) per household, with a max of 3 dogs.
  • You must have a coop that's shielded from the front of your property by a fence, your house, etc.  
  • You may not sell the eggs from your chickens (though buttering up neighbors is not prohibited :)
  • Of course, existing noise & nuisance (smell) ordinances apply, as do humane treatment rules.  
Some good-neighbor addendum -- or "how to be a city-chicken ambassador":
  • Talk to your neighbors.  You don't have to get their permission, but if they're onboard and know they can talk to you first if there's any problem, we'll all be better off.
  • Offer eggs to neighbors -- you're sure to have too many at least every now and again, and who can say no to safe, fresh eggs?
  • Plan on a relatively-attractive coop & make sure it's as shielded from view as possible.
  • Clean early & clean often -- especially when it's warm and the coop is likely to be its most odoriferous.
  • Invite the neighbors over to see your chicks -- kids especially will love to see them when they're babies.
  • If your chickens get meat scraps, make sure they're gone or cleaned up before nightfall when they may attract varmints.


Bexley City Code 1260.20
1260.20 NOISE.
Objectionable noise which is due to volume, frequency or beat shall be muffled or otherwise controlled. Air-raid sirens and related apparatus used solely for public purposes are exempt from this requirement.
(Ord. 8-72. Passed 5-9-72.) 

Bexley City Code Section 618.20
(a) No person shall keep more than five dogs, cats and chickens of which not more than three may be dogs, excluding puppies and/or kittens less than six months old, in any single-family dwelling, or in any separate dwelling unit in a two-family or multifamily dwelling within the City. "Dwelling" and "dwelling unit" as used in this section, include the lot or parcel of land on which the house or building containing the dwelling unit is located, and all other structures located on the lot or parcel.
(Ord. 45-10. Passed 12-7-10.)

(b) Any person who violates or fails to comply with this section is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree. A separate offense shall be deemed committed each day during or on which a violation or noncompliance occurs or continues.
(Ord. 76-89. Passed 6-26-90.)

Bexley City Code Section 618.24

618.24 CHICKENS.
(a) No person shall own, keep or harbor any chickens without meeting the requirements set forth in the following subsection:
  1. (1)  That a one time permit be required and issued to the City of Bexley prior to acquiring chickens, and an inspection occur by the Bexley Animal Control Officer within 60 days of acquiring chickens.
  2. (2)  That the chickens shall be kept in a secure enclosure shielded from the street to which it fronts.
  3. (3)  That a chicken coop be provided, and be kept clean and in good repair.
(b) No person in subsection (a) shall sell the eggs produced by said chickens.
(c) No person in subsection (a) above shall own, keep, or harbor a rooster.
(d) No person in subsection (a) above shall fail to comply with all other sections in Chapter 618, Animals, involving the care and responsibility of animals. (Jessica's note: The pertinent portion of the rest of 618 says, basically, that you have to take good care of your pets).
(e) Whoever violates this Section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor for a first offense; whoever violates this Section for a second or subsequent offense is guilty of a misdemeanor in the fourth degree. In addition, for second or subsequent violations, the Court may order the offender to forfeit the animals.
(Ord. 44-10. Passed 12-7-10.) 


  1. My family and I would love to come see your chickens! My chiropractor told me about you yesterday(he also lives in Bexley). My e-mail is I look forward to hearing from you...


  2. Could you help me get in contact with someone that was instrumental in getting this ordinance passed? I recently moved from Columbus Oh to a small farming community in Illinois and ordinances prohibit chickens. I would like to work toward a chicken friendly community here.

  3. Hi,

    We recently found that keeping chickens in Delaware is basically not allowed. We'd like to get our ordinance updated. Any helpful hints?
    I'd appreciate any help on getting started.