Can You Own a Goat in Colorado?

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a pet goat

In many states across the US, goats are considered livestock or farm animals, which means they cannot be kept in urban areas. However, in Colorado, the rules for owning goats, as well as other animals, are determined by individual municipalities. This means that whether or not you can have a goat in Colorado depends on where you live within the state and the zoning laws in that area. 

So, before you decide to bring a goat into your Colorado home, it's a good idea to check out the specific zoning regulations! Meanwhile, in this blog post, I've put together a list of a few Colorado municipalities that allow goats, just to give you some examples.

Denver, CO

In Denver, Colorado, goats are classified as livestock, which means that if you want to own a goat within the city, you'll need to obtain a livestock permit. This permit allows you to keep up to two Nigerian dwarf goats or any African pygmy breeds of goats. According to the City Code, you must make sure you have at least 130 square feet of permeable land area for each goat, along with sufficient shelter space. Furthermore, you must install appropriate fencing to prevent the goats from escaping when they are not in their shelters.

Colorado Springs, CO

If you are a property owner in Colorado Springs, you have the opportunity to engage in Urban Agriculture by owning up to four dwarf or pygmy goats, each weighing less than 100 pounds. However, there specific zoning requirements you must adhere to. As stated on the city's official website, if you wish to keep three or more goats on your property, you must provide a housing structure that meets the following standards: 

1 - The housing structure should be situated within the rear 50% of your lot, ensuring proper placement. 2 - The housing structure must be positioned at least 20 feet away from any abutting property line. 3 - The housing structure must offer adequate shelter for the goats, ensuring their well-being and protection from the elements. 4 - Each goat should have access to a minimum of 130 square feet of permeable area within the rear 50% of your lot. 5 - Slaughtering of goats is prohibited on residential lots.

Fort Collins, CO

If you reside in a Fort Collins zone district where keeping farm animals is is prohibited, the City Code allows you to have two pygmy or dwarf goats on your property, along with any number of their offspring under 12 weeks old. However, you can't have just one goat, it's against the rules. The City Code specifically permits only female or neutered male Nigerian Dwarf or African Pygmy breeds of goats. But before you rush out to get your goats, you'll need to obtain a permit from the Humane Society.

Thornton, CO

In Thornton, Colorado, the keeping of miniature goats is only allowed through a Pilot Program, which lasts for about a year. According to the Thornton Police Department, if you have miniature goats during the Pilot Program, they can stay in the city until they pass away, even if the program ends. In Thornton, if you want to have miniature goats on your residential property, you must have two of them. These goats must be female goats without horns or male goats that have been neutered, and they should not exceed 100 pounds when fully grown.

Arvada, CO

The municipality of Arvada permits residents to own up to four miniature goats. These goats are allowed to graze on any part of your property where it is lawful to keep them. However, the number of goats allowed to graze is limited to a maximum of two per one-fourth acre or any portion thereof. For example, if your property measures one-third of an acre, you may have up to four goats grazing on it.

Loveland, CO

If you reside in the City of Loveland, CO, you are required to obtain a license in order to own dwarf goats. This license must be acquired within 14 days of acquiring the goats. Before you can be granted the license, you must provide satisfactory evidence that the dwarf goats have been vaccinated, as mandated by the City Code.

Castle Rock, CO

Residents of Castle Rock must obtain a license from the Castle Rock Police Department as soon as they bring home their miniature goats. According to the Town Code, it's prohibited to have just one miniature goat. You gotta have a pair! because miniature goats need some goat buddies for companionship. So, on each single-family detached lot, you can keep no more and no less than two miniature goats, unless they have baby goats younger than twelve weeks. Furthermore, only female or altered male miniature goats are allowed.

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