RSS IconRSS Print IconPrint Text Size Plus icon Minus icon

Backyard hens

Backyard Hens 

The Town of Caledon has introduced new provisions to the Animal Control By-law to permit the keeping of backyard hens in residential areas. These regulations are designed to protect animal welfare, safeguard public health and mitigate any potential nuisances to adjacent neighbours. 

To achieve these objectives, key provisions include the following:

  • a maximum of four (4) hens shall be permitted to be kept per lot
  • hens are only permitted in rear yards
  • hens shall be kept in a hen coop or run at all times
  • regular cleaning of coops and runs is required
  • appropriate care for hens, including veterinary care if necessary, must be provided
  • maximum heights and sizes are specified for hen coops and runs and a minimum amount of space per bird is required
  • hen coops, runs and any associated feed or manure storage must be set back specific distances from any lot line and adjacent dwellings
  • an owner shall ensure that their hens are kept in a manner so as to not cause a nuisance to any adjacent neighbour.             

The above information provides a general guide only. For a complete list of the regulations, please review the Town's Animal Control By-law or contact Regulatory Services

Education Resources

Properly keeping residential backyard hens is complicated and requires significant knowledge. Therefore, being a responsible owner requires commitment to becoming educated about how hens must be cared for to ensure that they are kept in a manner which protects animal welfare and public health. 

Prior to keeping backyard hens, residents should carefully review the following materials and thoroughly educate themselves about their responsibilities in properly caring for birds.

Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs

1.  Keeping Your Birds Healthy Resource Kit

     This provides in depth information including feed and water management practices to support proper health             for egg laying, cleaning and disinfecting techniques for hen enclosures, pest management and disease                     mitigation.

2.  Biosecurity Recommendations for Small Flock Poultry Owners 

     This resource identifies measures which should be taken to minimize the introduction and spread of disease             in residential hens such as practicing proper hygiene and recognizing and reporting any suspected illness.

Canadian Food Inspection Agency

1.  How to Prevent and Detect Disease in Backyard Flocks and Pet Birds

     This outlines five basic rules to follow in the day-to-day care of your birds to prevent disease in backyard flocks.


For more information, contact us during the following hours:

Monday through Friday (excluding holidays)
9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Please note our new phone number (effective January 2, 2019): 905.584.2272 x. 4698.

For after-hours emergencies please call 1.800.563.7881