Dumb “Confusing” Laws– Calculating Ventura County Animal Units

Now we understand the need to limit the number and type of animals people keep on their property.  No one wants to live next to a zoo and nurturing four hundred snakes may be over doing it a bit.  However, to determine just what kind of critter you want to keep and the number of them you can have, no calculator on the planet will help you figure out how many animal units you’re allowed.

From the Ventura County Non-Coastal Zoning Ordinance (we’re pretty sure this applies if you live on the coast which is not non-coastal but coastal):

Calculating the Allowed Number of Pet Animals: The sum of the individual animal units for a given dwelling unit shall not exceed the total number of animal units allowed pursuant to Sec. 8107 (the standards you must live by or else).

So how do you figure what your animal is worth, unit-wise, in Ventura County?  Easy, the government gives an example:

If 3.00 pet animal units are allowed per dwelling unit, the three pet animal units could be composed of four dogs (1.00 unit), four cats (1.00 unit), four rabbits (0.20 unit), 2 chickens (0.20 unit), 2 ducks (0.20 unit), 1 large bird (0.10 unit) and 20 small  birds (0.30 unit). This combination would equate to 3.00 pet animal units, while allowing 37 actual animals. If an additional cat (0.25 pet animal unit) were desired, the total number of pet animal units would rise to 3.25. This would exceed the allowable number of 3.00 pet animal units per dwelling unit.

Guinea Pig searching the Ventura County Zoning Codes

Guinea Pig searching the Ventura County Zoning Codes

Kind of reminds you of Common Core math, doesn’t it?  The powers that be even provide a helpful table.  Dogs and cats are equal, tell that to a dog lover.  They are each worth a .25 of a unit.  If you want a whole dog you will have to get four of them, maybe less if you’re into Great Danes. Guinea Pigs are practically worthless, which if you ever owned one you probably already know.  They only amount to only .02 of a unit.  So, you can get a heck of a lot of them and still not be breaking the law.  In fact, you can create a Guinea Pig condominium project in your living room.  But just to be sure check with Building and Safety first.  To give you some perspective a Buffalo is equal to a whole unit. Seriously?  They should be at least two.

They have devoted seven pages to all things furry and feathery of their 343 page ode on what you can and can’t do with your property.  If you have nothing better to do, read it sometime.  The chapter on setbacks is a page turner.  It’s all HERE  And may all your little units be well.


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