Goats and Pigs Still Out to Pasture in Lexington

Aug 16, 2012

Livestock, like small goats and pigs, remain prohibited in urban Lexington’s backyards.  A council committee this week rejected an exemption for those animals. Council Member Steve Kay sponsored the proposal.“I think we gave it a good shot.  We may bring it back at some later time.  But, I think for the moment, it’s off the table,” said Kay.  Critics of an exemption for goats and pigs worry about waste, noise and enforcement.  Council member Doug Martin believes the vast majority of Lexington’s residents don’t want pigs or goats living in their neighborhoods.

  Rick Curtis, who serves on the Animal Control Committee, worries those animals could be abused or neglected.

“And it’s not the people who are responsible, who are sitting in the audience, the people who actually deal with these animals on a regular basis.  Grow them for food, who are part of an organization that cares about the animals and knows how to take care of them.   But, once this is passed, how many people are gonna come on board that aren’t as knowledgeable as these people within the inner city.  And that’s our fear,” said Curtis.

Lexington resident Sarah Brown watched the discussion in the council chamber.  She was disappointed with the vote.

“We want our children to know, if they eat meat, where that comes from.  We hear so many people say ‘well meat comes from the super market.  We asked one of my daughter’s friends,  ‘Have you ever had chicken eggs before?’ and she said no.  And so, you know, people really don’t know.  They just really don’t know the origin of their foods and that doesn’t seem right to us,” said Brown.

If a goat is well fed, watered, and socialized, proponent Sarah Brown says there are few problems.  Brown says having small goats and pigs around the home offers lesson in sustainable agriculture.