Thursday, September 27, 2018

Township votes to allow Michigan boy with autism to keep his therapy support ducks

Posted By on Thu, Sep 27, 2018 at 1:25 PM

  • Photo via Dylan's Duck Adventures Facebook page

It's good news for 12-year-old Dylan Dyke of western Michigan, who was told he may lose custody of his two autism support ducks earlier this summer. After extensive public outreach and an ongoing appeal process, Dylan can officially keep on duckin'.

The Georgetown Township family faced a series of complaints in July filed by neighbors regarding their autistic son's therapy ducks, Bill and Nibbles, citing that "the sight and smell" were both "offensive and embarrassing" and could potentially negatively affect home values.

"The township has officially voted and Dylan is allowed to keep his ducks!," Dylan's family wrote in an update to Dylan's Duck Adventures Facebook page.

"Even though it sounds like the HOA board and complaining neighbors sent in more letters and emails, the zoning board of appeals approved specific guidelines for the ducks," the post continued. "Dylan is ecstatic!"

The Dyke family first made news when they launched a GoFundMe campaign to assist in the overwhelming legal costs associated with the appeal process, that until Wednesday night left Dylan with no promise that he would be able to keep his ducks.

The variance approved by the zoning board with a 5-0 votes includes specific guidelines on how to enclose the ducks. The family says they will continue to work with the township now that Wednesday night's 18 restrictions have been laid out.

"We’re ready to just move on with our life," Dylan's mother, Jennifer, told WOOD-TV following the news. "Dylan just wants his normal back, he just wants his ducks, he just wants normal life."

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