3-Year-Old Boy With Autism Allowed to Keep Pet Chickens

J.J. Hart's parents said his pet chickens have helped him communicate more easily.

A 3-year-old boy with autism will be able to keep his pet chickens after DeBary council members agreed to allow his family to keep the birds in their back yard.

The family's attorney, Mark Nation, told the Orlando Sentinel the city agreed to pass the resolution after he threatened to sue in federal court.

Family members said the boy, J.J. Hart, would hardly speak and threw temper tantrums nearly two years ago, but began communicating more easily after his parents got him the birds, according to the Sentinel.

When the DeBary council decided to end a one-year trial program that allowed residents to keep chickens in backyard coops, Nation threatened to file the lawsuit, saying it would violate the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Federal Fair Housing Act, the newspaper said.

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