Keeping Of Chickens

In accordance with City Code Section 6-71, Golden Valley residents may keep up to four hen chickens on their property after obtaining a valid license from the City.


  • No more than four chickens are allowed per licensed residence.
  • Roosters are prohibited.
  • Chickens must be confined to the licensed residence at all times, in a chicken coop or chicken run, and may not be kept in any part of the principal dwelling, garage, front yard, or side yard.
  • The butchering of chickens is prohibited.
  • All chicken grains and feed must be stored in a rodent-proof container.
  • The use of chickens for cockfighting is prohibited.

Coop & Run Regulations

  • All chickens shall be provided access to both a coop and run.
  • All fencing and electrical work associated with the chicken coop or run shall be consistent with City building and zoning codes, including obtaining proper permits and licenses.
  • Any chicken coop or run shall be set back at least 10 feet from the principal dwelling, 50 feet from principal dwellings on adjacent lots, and 10 feet from the property line. The coop and run shall be located closer to the principal dwelling of the licensed property than to any principal dwelling on adjacent properties.
  • Any coop or run shall be set back at least 25 feet from the following features:
    • a delineated wetland edge
    • the top of a bank of a pond, filtration basin, or infiltration basin
  • Chicken coops shall have a maximum footprint area of 10 square feet per chicken and a minimum footprint area of 5 square feet per chicken.
  • Chicken runs shall have a maximum footprint area of 20 square feet per chicken and a minimum footprint area of 10 square feet per chicken.
  • The coop shall be elevated a minimum of 12 inches above the ground and may not exceed a height of 6 feet as measured from the ground.
  • No coop or run shall be located in any form of easement or right-of-way.
  • The coop and run shall be completely enclosed and rodent proof.
  • The coop shall provide adequate protection from the elements and be winterized.
  • Residents must remove the coop from the property when they no longer keep chickens.


  • An initial inspection for the coop is $75, with a $25 annual license fee that expires every April 1.
  • Licenses must be obtained annually and expire each April 1.
  • License application fees are due upon submittal of the license application.
  • The City may deny or revoke any license application or renewal if it deems the applicant:
    • is unwilling or unable to fulfill the provision of the ordinance
    • fails to comply with the provisions of the ordinance
    • submits inaccurate or incomplete license information
    • fails to meet the conditions of the license
    • is creating a nuisance
    • is endangering the public health and safety
  • An initial inspection of the property, coop, and run is required before a license can be issued. A similar inspection is required for license renewals.
  • The City may inspect the licensed property at any time to ensure compliance with the ordinance.

Private Restrictions or Covenants on Property

Private restrictions or covenants on the use of property shall remain enforceable. These include, but are not limited to, deed restrictions, condominium master deed restrictions, neighborhood association by-laws, and covenant declarations.

A license issued to a person whose premises are subject to private restrictions and/or covenants that prohibit the keeping of chickens is void. The interpretation and enforcement of the private restrictions is the sole responsibility of the private parties involved.