Homeless chickens a local and nationwide problem
The Humane Society said last year, they took in more than 50 chickens!Photo: Video by kgun9.com
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - When you think of the Humane Society, you think of homeless dogs and cats, but there's another pet they want you to consider.
"When they're done laying eggs," Humane Society's Sara Gromley told Nine On Your Side, "since they're cheap and easy to acquire, a lot of people consider them disposable."
The Humane Society told us last year, they took in more than 50 chickens, mostly from people who bit off more than they could chew.
"Maybe [they're] regretting their decision to do urban chicken keeping," Gromley said.
Urban chicken keeping has become more and more popular nationwide with documentaries like "Food Inc." bringing national attention to food consciousness.
You keep a chicken coop in your backyard, collect the eggs, and have yourself some fresh poultry and product.
But, taking care of a chicken coop takes some work, which Gromley says many people don't realize.
However, one local man said, if you know what you're doing, taking care of chickens isn't all that complicated.
"If you're somebody who can take care of a house plant, if you're somebody who can take care of a cat, you can take care of a couple of chickens," local foodie Noel Patterson said.
He has a backyard devoted to gardening and clean eating, and he's dedicated.
But even for those without the same passion, he says a couple of chickens is a feasible option.
However, there are some things you need to know:
1) Chickens live a while...ten years.
2) They need some attention...pick up their poop and feed them.
3) Like anything living, they can get sick, so prepare for some medical costs.
4) They need a place to live. Chicken coops are legal within city limits, but they have to be 50 feet from your neighbor, and they must be clean. Patterson said he was able to build his coop for about 100 dollars. He was resourceful, though.
So, want a chicken now?
Great! The Humane Society is selling them for only 5 bucks!
But, only serious customers, please.
And don't go too crazy; you can only have about two dozen per backyard...no roosters!