FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control (FWACC) addressed a request by Purdue University Fort Wayne (PFW) to allow chickens on their campus during their Commission Meeting Wednesday afternoon.

In a letter submitted to FWACC by PFW, the university said their goal is to allow for a more hands-on experience in their agricultural courses.

A city ordinance prohibits livestock within city limits; however, FWACC Director Amy-Jo Sites said because PFW is an educational entity, the Department of Planning Services said they could be exempt from local zoning ordinances. This means they could be granted permission to house chickens.

Sites said that even if PFW is granted permission, that does not mean residents can do the same.

“Let’s say they are allowed. They’re going to have different standards, parameters, [and] exceptions than a normal citizen would. So just because a campus would be allowed — again we have to check the legality of it — doesn’t mean a normal citizen can go and grab some chickens and put them in their backyard,” Sites said.

A meeting is scheduled within the following weeks to learn more on what PFW plans to do with the chickens. FWACC, the health department, PFW and the city law department will decide if it will be allowed.

FWACC also addressed a situation on Wednesday where a dog was reportedly put up for adoption without the owner knowing it was happening.

Sites said the shelter received the dog while its owner was out of the country.

The dog was brought into the shelter as a stray on March 17. More than a week later, once the shelter legally owned the dog, the former owner tried to get the dog back.

Sites said a citizen already had adopted the dog, and there were no tags or a microchip that indicated who the dog’s former owner was. Sites said the person who was watching the dog while the former owner was out of town did not realize that the dog was missing.

The former owner filed a complaint to the Fort Wayne Metropolitan Human Relations Commission, with a charge of discrimination based on disability, saying the dog was a service animal.

Fort Wayne Metropolitan Human Relations will take the complaint under advisement to decide if FWACC was discriminatory based on the former owner’s disability.