Neighbors Face Off Over Backyard Farm

LIVONIA (WWJ) – “Let me keep my goats.” That’s what a Livonia woman will ask city officials at a zoning hearing Tuesday night.

At a home on Brentwood Kathryn Trestain keeps dozens of chickens, roosters and several pet goats.

That has some neighbors, including Karen Sayler, crying foul.

yard farm Neighbors Face Off Over Backyard Farm

(WWJ Photo/Sandra McNeil)

“Her chickens get in my yard all the time and that’s been a concerned. I don’t want them over here. The goats have gotten in the yard in the summertime,” Sayler told WWJ Newsradio 950’s Sandra McNeill, adding that she sometimes can’t sleep through all the crowing.

“We’ve heard them at four in the morning. Sometimes at six, six thirty, seven. We’ve heard them throughout the day,” she said.

Sayler is concerned for the health of her family.

“My son and his girlfriend, they’re pregnant. She can’t be breathing in all this from the foul and everything over here. And, you know, it’s just not sanitary at all,” she said.

Meantime, Trestain said her father bought to property because it did allow for farm animals in the city legislation — including cow, horses and chickens.

Trestain said she’s getting rid of the noisy roosters, but she’s hoping the city will rule to add goats to that allowed list.

Trestain said most of her neighbors like them.

“We have neighbors here all the time. The kids come here after school from the junior high, the elementary and even the high school. Many of them had never seen farm animals,” Trestain said.

“(The goats) are family, they’re pets, they’re wonderful. They just have really great personalities. They all have names. They come by their name, they know their names,” she said. “A goat, unlike a dog, is not going to attack its prey. It’s not a predator. They don’t even have bottom teeth.”

Trestain said her idea to have livestock on her property is not that far out there.

“A lot of urban farms are popping up all over the country,” said Trestain. “People are saying, you know, enough. We don’t want genetically modified. We want organic. We don’t want pesticides, herbicides. We want our own.”

What do you think? Comment below.

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