Goatee, Pismo and Grover are now officially Pismo Beach residents.
The three dairy goats have actually lived in the city for some time behind a house in the 100 block of Valley View Drive. They enjoy munching on leaves and grass, but are better known for their surfing and stand-up paddleboarding abilities courtesy of their owner, Dana McGregor.
Last week, the Pismo Beach City Council granted McGregor a permit to keep and raise them, as long as he continues to clean up after them and ensures their pen is at least 10 feet from the rear property line and 25 feet from any open water drainage system.
The council voted 4-1 on Tuesday to approve the permit. Councilwoman Mary Ann Reiss dissented, saying she did not think the residential neighborhood is an appropriate area for goats.
Pismo Beach has allowed residents to raise horses, cattle and sheep on lots that are 1 acre or larger. But until recently, goats were not permitted to be kept within city limits. After some costly tickets for grazing his goats within city limits, McGregor asked the City Council to reconsider its rules prohibiting the animals.
The council granted his request in June, agreeing to allow no more than four goats to be kept or raised on private property with the approval of a permit.
In applying for the permit, McGregor wrote to the council that the goats seldom make noise unless they are hungry, thirsty or in heat.
“I make sure they are well taken care of with food/water and take them somewhere while they are in heat so it’s not disruptive to the neighbors,” he wrote. “Hopefully in the near future goats can be considered with the same rights as a dog or cat, because they make great pets and are great for the city.”
McGregor first got Goatee, a nanny goat, several years ago to clear out poison oak in his mom’s yard, and he grew attached to her. Pismo and Grover are her offspring.
The city’s ordinance does not specify a minimum lot size for goats; during a previous meeting, community development director Jon Biggs said there are a number of different breeds of goats requiring different amounts of space, and he wasn’t ready to propose a minimum lot size.
Biggs said that no nearby property owners or any other Pismo Beach residents have contacted city staff with any comments or complaints about the permit.
McGregor received the permit for a one-year trial period. The city will then decide whether the permit can continue, have conditions added or be revoked.