Ohio veteran’s ‘duck therapy’ threatened by village ordinance

Ohio veteran’s ‘duck therapy’ threatened by village ordinance

[Ed. – Maybe they could make an exception.]

Darin Welker is facing a citation and a hearing in Coshocton Municipal Court for owning 14 ducks, as they are in violation of a village ordinance.

Welker, who lives on Grandview Street in West Lafayette, was cited June 23 with a minor misdemeanor. He said he uses the ducks for therapy after being wounded in 2005 in Iraq and should be allowed to keep them.

Welker said he has a letter from the Mental Health Department of the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs recommending he keep the ducks. …

Welker acquired his ducks in March when they were just days old. He had first heard the idea of using ducks as therapy weeks before and thought it wouldn’t hurt to try, he said.

He feeds them and takes care of them, which helps him physically, he said, and sometimes he just spends time with them or watches them interact with each other, which helps him mentally.

“Taking care of them is both mental and physical therapy,” he said. “(Watching them) keeps you entertained for hours at a time.” …

The law in West Lafayette about farm animals kept within the village was adopted in 2010.

The relevant section states no “chickens, turkeys, ducks, live poultry or fowl of any kind, horses, ponies, cows, calves, goats, sheep, or live animals of any kind except dogs, cats, gerbils, hamsters, guinea pigs, birds or mice shall be kept in the Village. No person shall keep or harbor rabbits which cause inconvenience or annoyance to persons of ordinary sensibilities by smell, unsightly housing, or trespass, or which cause damage to the property of others.”

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