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City of Oswego, Kansas
PO Box 210
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Oswego, Kansas 67356

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Ord. 1397 Allowing Chickens

                                                                                                     ORDINANCE NO. 1397


            BE IT ORDAINED by the Governing Body of the City of Oswego, Labette County, Kansas:

Section 1.   Chapter II,   Animal Control & Regulation, of the City Code of the City of Oswego, Labette County, Kansas, is hereby amended by adding Article 4, Chickens, as follows:

4-101 DEFINITIONS. As used in this chapter section and unless the context otherwise indicates:
         (a) “Chicken” means the common domestic fowl (Gallus) or its young. Chicken as defined herein shall not include Roosters.

(b) “Chicken Run” means an enclosed area in which chickens are allowed to walk and run about.

(c) “Chicken Tractor” means a moveable Chicken Run.

(d) “Coop” means a structure for housing chickens.

(e) “Individual” means one adult and competent human.

(f) “Owner, Keeper, or Harborer” means any person who feeds, shelters, offers refuge or asylum to any animal or as resident or occupant of property within the city, permits the same, for more than three (3) consecutive days, or who professes Keeping, Owning, or Harboring of such animal. A parent or legal guardian shall be deemed to be an Owner, Keeper, or Harborer of Animals Owned, Kept, or Harbored upon their premises by minor children who are less than eighteen (18) years of age.

(g) “Own, Keep, or Harbor” means to fee, shelter, offer refuge or asylum to any animal, or as a resident or occupant of property within the city, permit the same for more than three (3) consecutive days, or profess to Keeping, Owning, or Harboring such animal.

(h) “Sanitary” means clean and free from infectious influences.


(a) Coops, Chicken Runs and Chicken Tractors must be located in the rear yard of the property and must be at least twenty (20) feet from the nearest property line or street.

(b) The lot in which the chickens are housed must be zoned residential and an occupied home must be present on same property. No keeping of chickens in vacant lots is permitted.

(c) Coops, Chicken Runs and Chicken Tractors. Chickens must be kept in a clean, safe and healthy environment at all times. Chickens must be kept in a Coop, Chicken Run or Chicken Tractor at all times. Coops, Runs and Tractors shall be:

i) Inspected by and receive the written approval of the Code Enforcement Officer during the permitting process.
ii) Built with and maintain a minimum of 3 square feet per chicken, but shall not exceed 120 square feet
iii) Enclosed on all sides and shall have a roof and doors. Opening windows and vents must be covered with predator and bird-proof wire of less than one inch openings.
iv) Consist of a sturdy wire or wooden fencing and shall be designed so as to be easily maintained.
v) Constructed and maintained with durable materials that will hold up to weather and environment. Used materials (reclaimed material), scrap, waste board, sheet metal, or similar materials are prohibited.
vi) Subject to inspection by the Code Enforcement Officer as needed to verify and maintain compliance with this Section.

(d) It shall be unlawful for the Owner, Keeper, or Harborer of a chicken or chickens to subject same to cruel neglect by failing to provide adequate care as determined by the Code Enforcement Officer.

(e) Chicken waste is the responsibility of the owner, who shall be responsible for maintaining the property in compliance with this chapter. No more than three cubic feet of chicken waste may be maintained as manure fertilizer. The Coop, Chicken Run and Chicken Tractor and surrounding area must be kept free from trash, weeds, and accumulated chicken waste droppings. The chicken owner shall take necessary action to reduce the attraction of predators and rodents and the potential infestation of insects and parasites.

(f) No Animal shall be kept in a manner that is:

i) Offensive in odor
ii) Unsanitary
iii) Detrimental to the health of the people in the neighborhood or in the city
iv) Detrimental to the health of the chicken or chickens; or
v) A Public Nuisance.


(a) It shall be unlawful for any Owner, Keeper, or Harborer to maintain, or possess within the city, chickens without first applying for and obtaining a Special Chicken Permit (hereinafter called “Permit”) from the Code Enforcement Officer or his or her designee.

(b) The Permit may be approved to authorize a person to Own, Keep or Harbor one (1) to six (6) chickens of any age. Persons with more than 5 acres of property in which they are seeking a permit for, may be approved for up to twelve (12) chickens of any age.

(c) It shall be unlawful to Own, Keep, or Harbor Roosters in the city.


(a) Application. Any person desiring a Permit shall file an application with the Code Enforcement Officer, or his or her designee, on a form provided by the city and pay the fee as established by the city. The application shall identify the owner by name, address and telephone number and the owner must describe the location and shelter facilities for the chickens.

(b) Inspection. Upon application for all new Permits, the Code Enforcement Officer shall inspect the premises to determine compliance with the provisions of this article.

(c) Issuance. Permits shall be reviewed and approved by the Code Enforcement Officer, or his or her designee, provided, the property and facilities have passed the required inspection.

(d) Permits shall be valid from the date of issuance through December 31st of the same year.

(e) Renewal. Permits may be renewed by the Code Enforcement Officer or his or her designee for the next calendar year ending December 31st provided that all of the following conditions are met:

i) No valid violations within the twelve (12) months preceding the date of the Special Chicken Permit renewal application for which the applicant has been found guilty or entered a plea of guilty or no contest.
ii) The Code Enforcement Officer has inspected the property and the property has passed the inspection.
iii) The city has received no valid complaints during the preceding calendar year concerning the manner in which the chickens are kept; and
iv) The Person to whom the Special Chicken Permit was previously issued has submitted a properly completed renewal application stating that they are in compliance with this Article.

4-105 DENIAL. All Permit applications that do not meet all of the qualifications for approval as specified in this Article shall be denied by the Code Enforcement Officer or his or her designee. Upon denial, applicants have thirty (30) days to comply with this Article. All applicants who are denied a Permit and who do not comply within said thirty (30) days, shall not be eligible to reapply for a permit for twelve (12) months following the date of denial.


(a) The Code Enforcement Officer, or his or her designee, may revoke a Special Chicken Permit if, at any time, the Code Enforcement Officer, or his or her designee, finds there exists sufficient evidence upon which a reasonable person would conclude that a person to whom the Permit has been issued under this Chapter has violated any of the regulations of this Article or provided false information on the permit application.

(b) No Permit shall be revoked until ten (10) days’ notice has been given to the person granted the Permit under this Article, unless it is determined that an immediate revocation is necessary in order to protect the health, safety and welfare of the surrounding neighbors or the animals being owned, kept, or harbored under the Permit.

(c) Upon revocation of the Special Chicken Permit, the person granted such permit shall have thirty (30) days from the date of notice of the revocation within which to comply with this Article.

(d) Any person granted a Special Chicken Permit who had said Permit revoked under this Article shall not be eligible to reapply for a new Permit for twelve (12) months following the date of revocation.


(a) Special Chicken Permits issued under this Article shall only be issued for the specific person and specific address listed on the original pplication. A new Permit application and an application fee shall be required in the event an applicant or permittee moves to a new address.
(b) A new application and fee shall be required in the event an applicant or permittee transfers the chickens listed in the original Permit to a new owner, keeper or harborer within the city limits.

         The Code Enforcement Officer and/or his or her designee, shall have such powers and authority as allowed by law in the enforcement of this Article.


(a) Municipal Offense – It shall be a municipal offense to engage in acts violating any of the provisions of this Article. Any person shall, upon conviction thereof, be assessed a minimum penalty, not to exceed $500, incarceration not to exceed 30 days, or both a fine and incarceration.

(b) Each day that a violation continues shall be deemed a separate offense.


If any section, clause, sentence or phrase of this ordinance is found to be unconstitutional or is otherwise held invalid by any court of competent jurisdiction, it shall not affect the validity of any remaining parts of this ordinance.

THIS ARTICLE 4. CHICKENS, OF CHAPTER II. ANIMAL CONTROL & REGULATION shall become an addendum to the City Code of the City of Oswego. This ordinance shall take effect upon publication in the Labette Avenue. Approved this 11th day of December, 2017.

F.W. Cunningham, Jr., Mayor


Carol Edington, City Clerk

THE CITY OF OSWEGO IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY PROVIDER AND EMPLOYER - If you wish to file a Civil Rights program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, found online at  http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html, or at any USDA office, or call (866) 632-9992 to request the form. You may also write a letter containing all of the information requested in the form. Send your completed complaint form or letter to us by mail at U.S. Department of Agriculture, Director, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20250-9410, by fax (202) 690-7442 or email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


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