Round Lake village board members continue to ponder the idea of a family having pet chickens in a residential area.
Anastassia Strine has been pushing for her family to have the pet chickens in Valley Lakes subdivision where she resides with her husband and four young children. She contends dogs require a lot of care, and cats won't cut it as pets in her household because one of her sons and her husband are allergic to felines.
Village board members agreed to do more research on the issue after entertaining the chicken request for the second time in less than a month during a nonvoting committee meeting Monday night. Round Lake's elected officials intend to place the poultry on the committee agenda for discussion a third time Oct. 21.
Strine said she's done her homework and finds chickens would make fine pets. She also contends that unlike dogs, chickens don't bite humans and tear off skin.
But Round Lake Village Administrator Russell Kraly said Tuesday he stands by his recommendation against altering local law to let chickens live in residential neighborhoods. He's told the village board that chickens are not clean animals, would need to stay outside in coops and shouldn't live with a family indoors.
Kraly said he's seen various urban animal trends in his long tenure as a village administrator. He remembered one particular request that didn't fly in his 15 years while Bannockburn's top boss in village hall.
"One time, I can remember someone who wanted to bring in miniature horses when they were the rage," Kraly said.
Round Lake Trustee Susan Triphahn said she's concerned residents will make requests to have other farm animals as pets if the chickens are allowed in a residential subdivision.
In August, the Arlington Heights village board had to clarify the prohibited animals code for the second time this year after residents asked to keep a peacock and a potbellied pig as pets. Officials approved a change to specify it's not just backyard chickens that are unwelcome in Arlington Heights, but other animals such as pigs, cattle, horses, goats and sheep.
One of Lake County's highest profile residential animal cases occurred in March 2006, when Estelle Walgreen gained the right to live on Lake Forest's posh east side with her three pigs. Walgreen's new neighbors at the time, Robert and Kathleen Murphy, opposed the pigs.
Lake Forest aldermen eventually amended the city's animal regulation code to allow Walgreen's pigs to stay on the Sheridan Road estate for five years. The decision became moot in about two years after her property fell into foreclosure and she moved.