Rules set for boy with autism to keep ducks

posted by WOOD Radio News - 

GEORGETOWN TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Georgetown Township officials laid out a series of restrictions Wednesday to allow a 12-year-old boy with autism to keep the ducks he uses for therapy.

”I was happy with what they did. I was happy that it was very short, sweet, to the point and finally this is over with the township," Dylan Dyke's father Mark Dyke said.

Neighbors had complained about Dylan's ducks, saying they smelled and left waste on their property. Township officials then said the ducks violated an ordinance that prohibits farm animals and that they would have to go.

Dylan's parents got a doctor's not to show the ducks, named Bill and Nibbles, are emotional support animals and asked the township for a variance. After hearing arguments on the issue last month, the Zoning Board of Appeals worked out a deal to allow the ducks to stay and keep the neighbors happy.

On Wednesday, the board approved a variance that set 18 guidelines the family will have to follow to keep the ducks, including keeping Bill and Nibbles in a coop away from the road and neighboring properties, keeping that area clean and managing the smell, and keeping the ducks away from neighboring properties.

"We’re ready to just move on with our life. Dylan just wants his normal back, he just wants his ducks, he just wants normal life," the boy's mother Jennifer Dyke said.

The family said it will work with its homeowners' association to implement the ducks.

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