Getting chickens in the city and county of Denver


So I can’t remember how Joseph and I got into the idea of getting chickens. I think it was the idea of my mom’s boss and then my mom and then to us for mulling. I read the entire Web site and with little convincing, had Joseph on the bandwagon.

Chickens are awesome for several reasons. They eat table scraps, except meat, not to mention that’s weird and gross. We’re not getting them for the meat, but for the eggs. When you have your own chickens, fed a vegetarian diet, their eggs are higher in omega3s and lower in cholesterol. You can let them out in your lawn they’ll take care of pesky bugs and aerate too! Plus a carton of all natural etc eggs are easily $4, and chickens are so easy to keep not to mention cheap. Plus they’re just fun.

We went to the stock show when it came to town and checked out all the chicken options. There are so many different kinds of chickens! They don’t all look like foghorn leghorn (though leghorns are a variety). We even got to hold a couple, they were so chill. Just hung out, enjoying the warmth of our hands.

That’s when i really started looking into what it would take for us to own chickens. Living in the city, of course there are permits etc. Looking at the Web site, all it says is that you have to write a letter to the director of animal control, informing them of your intent to own chickens and then they’ll let zoning know and then you pay a $50 to get the permit. Seriously. I might be leaving out one or two other items, but certainly not what we’ve been going through, to say the least.

I wrote this letter to animal control at the beginning of the year (2009) sometime. I should have known that actually mailing things anymore is a questionable practice. Anyway, Joseph was laid off and I thought our dreams of owning chickens were dashed financially. Long story short we worked it out. So I decided to call zoning to see if they had received anything from animal control. Well that was a no and the person I talked to was telling me I needed to come down there and fill out some application and pay a $100 fee and post a sign in our yard. I said oh I’m sure that’s not right, I’ll get in touch with animal control and see what’s what.

I then called animal control, whom you can only get in touch with via 311, which then asks you why you need to talk to them and then they pass you along. So you have to talk to two people rather than just one, every single time. So that’s fun. The first time I called I left a message with the 311 people for the animal control people to call me back. Well that never happened. So I called back again and was told that the person I needed to talk to, Paula, was unavailable and would call me back. That never happened. So I called back again and this time talked to Paula who of course had no idea about any letter sent. She said I could fax it to her. So I did. She didn’t get it. So I faxed it again. She finally got it. But then I needed to talk to a Sergeant Barker. So I called him and he said he needed a copy of the letter. So I had to fax that again.

Here’s the total so far:

No less than 4 calls to animal control.

One call to zoning.

No less than 5 versions (1 sent, 4 faxed) of the request letter.

Well Sergeant Barker needed to come and inspect our property. Fine, I’d rather there be no question of these animals care, what have you. So he shows up early and stays for no more than 5min. He told us that animal control would not oppose our having chickens. So I asked him what I was to do next. He said he would send us a letter that we could take to zoning. We’d then have to post a sign of our intent to own chickens. Damn zoning!

Fine we’ll put a big ugly sign in our yard if we can just get chickens.

So we went down to zoning. We don’t have to put up a sign. We have to put up two! AND be charged $100. Not to mention we got more paperwork to fill out. We also have to write letters to all our abutting neighbors informing them of our intent to have chickens. Two of our neighbors hate us. So we’ll see if bribing with eggs might work. We’re too stubborn to back out now. After filling out this paperwork, sending our neighbors letters and providing proof that they received said letters, and $100, we post one sign for 10days telling everyone our intention (this sign is neon pink). If we get that far, then we get to post a neon green sign for another 15days.

Here’s the total so far:

No less than 4 calls to animal control.

One call to zoning.

No less than 5 versions (1 sent, 4 faxed) of the request letter.

1 visit from animal control

1 returned letter from animal control

1 visit to zoning

Soon to come… more paperwork, money, letters, and no less that two signs from zoning.

We’re getting these damn chickens. Come hell or high water!!

Stay tuned.

posted under Chickens
One Comment to

“Getting chickens in the city and county of Denver”

  1. Avatar February 14th, 2010 at 7:37 pm Rooster Shamblin Says: would you please check out my chicken blog. I have been raising more than 50 breeds of chickens 40 years.

You must be logged in to post a comment.