Plymouth: Emotional Support Rooster Causes Drama in Town

There’s lots of drama in Plymouth about a rooster. But this is no ordinary bird. The Ceurvels family got the bird as an emotional support animal for their teen-age daughter. The problem is they live on a one-acre lot and the Board of Health bans roosters on property less than 5 acres.

Public Health Director Dr. Nate Horwitz-Willis says the policy was put in place by the Board of Health after years of complaints about the crowing of roosters:

“and that’s what they were thinking about with the right-to-farm and looking at the zoning regulation to comprise a comprehensive regulation. And also, they recognize that people may want to have a rooster in special circumstances, so they decided to add in a variance.”

And that variance allows anyone to come before the Board of Health to make a reasonable request for accommodation, to say can I have a rooster?

But when the family appeared before the Board late last year claiming that they should be exempt from the ruling because their rooster is a service animal, the request was denied:

“Federal law does not recognize any rooster as a service animal. However, when you get into the state law it doesn’t distinguish between what qualifies as a comfort animal, per se.”

The Ceurvels then filed against the town’s public health department with the state Commission Against Discrimination and the US Dept of Housing and Urban Development. The story was first reported by the Boston Globe, upon notification by the Ceurvels.

 


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About Bobbi Clark

Bobbi Clark is a Plymouth area reporter at WATD. She began her career in radio as a producer at a news/talk radio station in Chicago. From there she went to WMAQ-TV, the NBC owned and operated television station in Chicago, As a producer there, she won 5 Emmy Awards for production of special programming. Bobbi is a graduate of Emerson College, with a degree in Writing, Publishing and Literature.