Backyard Chickens Permit

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Current Size: 80%

On June 14, 2016, City Council amended Section 15-2-24 of the City Code, commonly referred to as the "Chicken Ordinance." Residents, who meet requirements, may apply for a permit to keep chickens within city limits.

General Requirements, Terms & Conditions to Keep Backyard Chickens

PDF[214KB] Amended City Code Section 15-2-24 

PDF[74KB] En espa?ol - Code of Ordinances Section 15-2-24

PDF[94KB] Application to Keep Chickens

PDF[125KB] Aplicaci?n para la crianza de pollos


Steps to Apply for a (Backyard) Chicken Permit (PDF[179KB] Pasos a seguir para solicitar un permiso)

1. Bring completed PDF[94KB] Application to Keep Chickens (PDF[125KB] Aplicaci?n para la crianza de pollos), required documentation, and $25.00 permit fee to the Planning and Zoning Division of the Department of Planning and Community Development, 409 South Main Street, 2nd Floor. Required documentation includes:

  • Site layout showing proposed location of pen and confirmation of setbacks from property lines and the setback from streams, tributaries, ditches, swales, stormwater management facilities, drop-inlets, or other storm drainage. See City Code for required setback distances.
  • Information or drawing of enclosed and covered pen that contains at least 4 square feet per bird.
  • Verification of Virginia Livestock Premises Registration. Register here.

2. Planning and Zoning Division will send accepted application to Animal Care and Control. Animal Care and Control will schedule to visit the property, and if approved, will provide a Chicken Permit to the owner.

3. The Chicken Permit shall be displayed on the chicken pen at all times.

4. The permit is valid for one (1) year and must be renewed annually to continue to keep chickens.


Resources - Applicants are encouraged to give notice and educational materials to neighbors.