Are chickens a city pet? Chicago’s city council is nearing a vote on a proposal to ban chicken ownership, even as green- and organic-minded citizens around the country increasingly keep the birds for eggs, yard work, and companionship. Among worries for Chicago politicians, the AP reports, are that chickens’ waste attracts rodents and that the birds might transmit avian flu.
Chicken lovers say that the birds are no dirtier than any other pet if conscientiously cleaned up after, and that other cities have allowed for private poultry without descending into diseased, smelly chaos. Ultimately, though, it might be their back-country image that dooms the fowl’s resurgence: "People move in and they don't want chickens (around) so they complain," one observer clucked.