We were just informed that it is apparently legal to have a Chicken (less than four) as a “pet” in your home in San Francisco. Hmmm…any restaurant food jokes come to mind?
We couldn’t help but to cut and paste (below the break) the entire Section 37: Keeping and Feeding of Small Animals, Poultry, and Game Birds:
SEC. 37. KEEPING AND FEEDING OF SMALL ANIMALS, POULTRY AND GAME BIRDS.
(a) Number of animals. It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to keep or feed, or cause to be kept or fed, or permit to be kept or fed, on any premises over which any such person, firm or corporation may have control within residential districts, (1) more than three dogs of age six months or older without obtaining a proper permit and license to operate a dog kennel as defined in Section 220 of the San Francisco Business and Tax Regulations Code, and (2) more than a total of four of the following in any combination: dogs of age six months or older unless part of a dog kennel, hares, rabbits, guinea pigs, rats, mice, gerbils, chickens, turkeys, geese, ducks, doves, pigeons, game birds of any species, or cats. Nothing in this section, however, shall prohibit the feeding of any wild bird not specifically prohibited by this section unless such feeding creates a public health nuisance.
(b) Enclosures. Any person, firm or corporation, keeping, feeding, or causing to be kept or fed, or permitting to be kept or fed, on premises over which such person, firm or corporation may have control, four or less hares, rabbits, guinea pigs, rats, mice, gerbils, chickens, turkeys, geese, ducks, doves, pigeons, parrots of any species, game birds of any species or wild animals of any species except those animals prohibited by Section 50 of this Code, shall keep same in coops or enclosures that are approved by the Director of Public Health. Where the coops or enclosures are located on the outside of or on top of any buildings, premises or structures, the coops or enclosures shall be not less than 20 feet from any door or window of any building used for human habitation.
(c) Prohibition. It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to engage in the business of keeping, feeding, or breeding any hares, rabbits, guinea pigs, rats, mice, gerbils, chickens, turkeys, geese, ducks, doves, pigeons, parrots of any species, game birds of any species, dogs, cats, for commercial purposes, within the residential districts.
(d) Commercial Purposes. It is hereby declared to be unlawful to conduct for commercial purposes any establishment in which dogs, cats, hares, rabbits, guinea pigs, rats, mice, gerbils, chickens, turkeys, geese, ducks, doves, pigeons, parrots of any species, game birds of any species, are kept and maintained in the commercial or industrial districts without first obtaining from the Department of Public Health a permit so to do.
No permit shall be issued by the Department to any person, firm or corporation, to keep or maintain for commercial purposes any of the above named fowl, animals or birds within the commercial or industrial districts, unless said person, firm or corporation has complied in full with the following requirements:
(1) It shall be unlawful to establish hereafter any place of business for the sale of the fowl, animals or birds specified above within 25 feet of any door, window or other opening of any dwelling, apartment house or hotel if live fowl, animals or birds intended for sale are kept therein; provided, however, that this restriction shall not apply if a wall, ceiling, floor or other impermeable barrier between the place of business and such habitation will prevent odors and noise from disturbing the occupants of the habitation. It shall be unlawful to keep said live fowl, animals or birds in any basement, sub-basement or cellar in any place of business unless such basement, sub-basement or cellar is adequately ventilated, as approved by the Director of Public Health and is also adequately lighted, completely rodent-proofed and complies fully with the sanitary requirements set forth in Section 440 of this Code.
(2) The floors of all such premises must be of waterproof material, smooth and of durable construction properly drained to the sewer. These floor surfaces shall be coved at the juncture of the floor and wall with a 3/8-inch minimum radius coving and shall extend up the wall at least four inches.
(3) The premises shall be rodent-proof, all openings properly fly-screened, and adequate provision must be made for the elimination of all odors.
(4) The walls and ceilings of all such premises must be of durable, smooth, nonabsorbent, washable surface, and be light-colored.
(5) In all premises where slaughtering of fowl, birds or animals is carried on in connection with the keeping of said fowl, birds or animals, the killing room must be entirely separate from that part of the premises occupied by the live fowl, animals or birds.
Refrigerating equipment must be installed for the reception of the dressed fowl, birds or animals, properly connected to the sewer. Toilet and lavatory facilities for the use of the employees engaged in the handling and slaughtering of such birds, animals or fowl must be installed in conformity with the provisions of the San Francisco Plumbing Code.
(e) Exceptions. The terms and provisions of this Section shall not apply to the keeping, liberation for exercise, or racing of homing or carrier pigeons which are not raised or kept for the market or for commercial purposes, and the lofts or pigeons houses wherein said homing or carrier pigeons are kept are elevated at least three feet above the ground or other foundation upon post-legs or pillars completely surrounded or covered by smooth, jointless galvanized sheet metal and within not less than 20 feet from the door or window of any building used for human habitation, and the entire floor and sides for at least two feet extending upwards from the bottom of the floor of said lofts or pigeons houses, are covered or protected by galvanized iron or its equivalent, concrete or 18 gauge wire mesh of not more than 1/2-inch and the interior of said lofts or pigeons houses, wherein such carrier or homing pigeons are kept, are registered by the owners thereof with the Department of Public Health and the said lofts or pigeon houses shall be inspected by the Department at least once a year.
(f) Definition. For the purposes of this Section, the terms “residential district,” “commercial district,” and “industrial district” shall have the same meanings as those found in the San Francisco Planning Code.
(Amended by Ord. 256- 90, App. 6/29/90; Ord. 185-00, File No. 000335, App. 8/11/2000; Ord. 125-01, File No. 010269, App. 6/15/2001)
Municipal Code, Article 1: Animals [sfgov.org]