Camden County Chickens


                                                                        We have NO association with any government organization--
                                                                         We get things done!

PLEASE USE:     Make certain the subject line has sufficient information on it. This will help us both out immensely and speed up our response to you.

Camden County Chickens was created by Gwenne Baile after a five year effort at changing the law in Haddon Twp., NJ to allow, initially, up to four hens per back yard. (this was later changed to eight)  Since that time (2015) she has assisted more than 14 New Jersey communities in getting their laws changed as well. The work continues tweaking existing ordinances and getting new ones passed in other communities that desire their own hens.

Rosebud, our first therapy chicken, has appeared in newspapers as well as the local TV news. Sadly, she passed away.

Sandy, whose full name is Sandra Day O'Connor is a good bird and very attractive too. She will attempt to play the piano for her fans.

Our birds regularly visit nursing homes and schools. They can be seen almost every weekend at farmer's markets, sustainability functions and other special events such as autism day at the Academy of Natural Science in Philadelphia, PA.

Do you want us to come and visit you? Our calendar is already filling up. Contact us ASAP.

We do chicken story time at various libraries all over South Jersey (and occasionally Delaware and Pennsylvania). Gwenne reads stories while one of the hens sits quietly on her lap. The children then have an opportunity to pet the hen after the stories.

We also do "Books and Beaks" at several libraries where families sign up in advance for a private time for the child to read the chicken just as many libraries do with dogs. There are many advantages of using chickens over dogs. We have found that a shy child will talk to a chicken before they talk to a human. Chickens are generally non-judgmental.


Making the world better one hen at a time

Gwenne R. Baile

CEO and chief coop cleaner

Gwenne is a retired nurse-midwife. She started her career as a delivery room nurse in several local hospitals before going to school at UMDNJ to become a midwife. She has worked on the staff of two different hospitals in South Jersey and has delivered over 2000 babies. After her retirement she decided to do those things that a 100 hour workweek prohibited and became a master Gardner. She also took several classes in chicken husbandry only to discover that it was illegal to raise chickens in her town. Five years later she persuaded the local council to pass a pilot law to allow up to four hens. 24 families enrolled in the pilot and it hasn't really cost the community anything. After several successful years of zero complaints, in 2018 the pilot program was converted to an ordinance allowing up to eight backyard hens (no roosters) . In early 2020 she stepped down as Chair of the Haddon Township Backyard Chicken Program and is now Chair Emeritus. She is on the Backyard Chicken Advisory Board of Oaklyn, NJ and Woodbury, NJ as well as Haddon Township. She continues to advise other communities in ways to update restrictive ordinances to allow backyard hens. Gwenne teaches the required class "The Basics of Raising Backyard Chickens in the Suburbs" approximately four times a year. She is a Certified Handler of Therapy Chickens through the Chickens and You/Gossimer Foundation. In 2019 she taught a class certifying ten new handlers. She will be teaching this class approximately one a year if demand warrants.

Blossom Baile

Therapy Chicken

Blossom was a foundling, alone in the wild. She had a great personality and she was a quick learner. She was attempting to learn the piano. In this photo she is modeling her diaper. Due to the untimely death of Rosebud, the therapy chicken, Blossom was working full time. Sadly she passed away in October, 2019 due to a problem their breed (red sex-links) often encounters

Read More  

Rosebud Baile

The Original Therapy chicken

Rosebud had a natural tendency to be a therapy chicken. One could handle her and she would sit on a person's lap unattended. If it was an older person she would feel the calmness and start to fall asleep. Some kids would sing to her. She would listen intently. She would ride in the car and listen to the radio. Then she would become mesmerized and fade off to sleep. She was a good bird and worked many hours per week. Rosebud died of natural causes 4/14/2018 Blossom is taking over her duties.

Freckles Baile

Chief Herder and eater of things that drop

Freckles had a rough beginning. She was found playing in traffic on a busy state highway. Several other people wanted her but they just couldn't accommodate her. We are happy to have her. She enjoys mingling with the birds. Freckles is totally blind due to a disease. Sadly, Freckles died in May of 2020. She was a good dog and we miss her.

Ron Baile

Head gofer, communications manager, coop maintenance engineer

After 35 years in the telephone and computer business Ron retired, went to work for a railroad and is a licensed engineer. He occasionally accompanies chickens to events and can fill in where needed.

Read More  


We are available, as time allows, as a consultant to help you get your laws passed or revised. We are not lawyers. However, we have researched the topic far and wide and have helped put together quite few successful ordinances. We have a lot of research available for you at no cost. The more cases we work on the better the process becomes and the faster it happens. For us, this is one way we give back to the communities that we live, work and play in. Yes, if you can afford it we will accept small donations since printing, postage and gasoline costs are always rising but it is not mandatory.

Nursing Homes

We visit nursing homes; some on a regular basis. Patients come out of their shells and the chicken takes them back to a better time in their lives. Contact us if you are interested in one of our docile birds visiting your facility. Make arrangements well ahead as our bookings fill up fast.


We visit schools, scout groups and whoever else may be interested in chickens. Sustainability fairs, science fairs and general educational events are always on our schedule. Let us know what you have in mind. Act early! There are only so many weekends in a year and the birds (and their humans )need to rest some times. Our available time slots fill quickly.

Chicken husbandry classes

In all the communities that we have had ordinances passed in our favor we have had included the mandatory need for at least one responsible person per family to attend a certified class. We provide these classes at a modest cost to you. Since the advent of the Corona Virus, we now have the ability to teach the classes ON-LINE! Contact us for more information about this. Classes are limited and are only held a few times a year. Contact us ASAP for information.

Healthy chicken classes

We also provide occasional chicken health classes usually conducted by a registered veterinarian. We usually ask a small donation for these classes as veterinarians don't come cheap. We have one of the younger ones in the area available. She is a very good speaker and she is also a very good listener.


Our pilot program initially had 24 families. Our pilot was converted to an ordinance after two years. We now have about 30 families. We meet several times a year to share our concerns and support each other. We occasionally have programs aimed at the back-yard chicken owner and it may often be helpful to others in your community. Networking is very important these days and we promote conversations between chicken owners. This is also a good excuse to have a picnic or a party. If you have questions or concerns, please contact us. Visitors are always welcome to our meetings. Contact us for more information.


We now have the ability to teach our classes on line and, possibly at a more convenient time for you. We have a ZOOM account and it has ben working great! Here you will get to know about therapy chickens and how to create a therapy chicken program. Our teacher will be Gwenne Baile who is a nationally known hen handler and speaker on the subject. Send an email inquiring when we anticipate hosting our next therapy handler class.

  • 24 Hampton Rd, Westmont, New Jersey 08108, United States

No, not for them, for you!

NOW--SOCIALLY DISTANCED!  We follow state mandates concerning masks.      >> Due to the Corona Virus Outbreak, our classes have moved  ONLINE <<  This gives us much more flexibility in scheduling since we don't have to schedule a facility and we don't have to be in or out at a certain time.

Have you ever considered raising chickens in your backyard?
Gwenne Baile, Chair, of Camden County Chickens and Therapy Hens will teach you how easy and rewarding it is to raise a backyard flock. Learn everything from choosing the right chicks, how not to get a rooster, setting up a predator-proof coop, and keeping your hens happy and healthy year-round. This class is mandatory for most towns where there are new ordinances or pilot programs. It would be good for residents of other towns to attend the class if you’re are looking into modifying existing ordinances. It's a great networking experience and a good chance to get the honest truth about the subject .
Email for information about the next class.

Congratulations to the communities of Runnemede, Haddonfield and National Park, N.J.  There were several others I can't recall that I will post when I verify them.  We will add them to our list along with Tinton Falls and Oakland, New Jersey (west of Newark) . These towns have successfully passed their chicken ordinances. We wish them much happiness and success with their chickens.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>> We are proud to announce that this year we have become associated with the Princeton, NJ Adult  Evening School as an instructor. We have also joined the faculty of the Main Line (Pennsylvania) Adult Evening School. We are also teaching classes at the Burlington County AG center whre we hope to have more of a presence.

We are quite proud of our association with the Museum of Natural Science in Philadelphia, Pa.
We make periodic visits there throughout the year. We are especially proud of our work with them with autistic kids where the kids get to come into the museum before the general public. Call the museum or check their web site for more information.
One time we visited a school in Cherry Hill and were met by Nora Muchanic and her photographer. They were retiring in a few days and they were quite enthused to get do a positive story on Rosebud and her friends.

By Nora Muchanic, Thursday, October 26, 2017 06:42, PM CHERRY HILL, N.J. (WPVI) --Channel 6, Philadelphia,PA

You may have heard of therapy dogs or even therapy horses, but Rosebud the therapy chicken is a whole different breed.

This two-year-old ball of feathers was visiting the TOPS adult day program at the Jewish community center in Cherry Hill, where she's always a hit.

Rosebud's owner Gwenne Baile is a retired nurse-midwife who loves chickens and has taken classes to be a therapy chicken handler.

"She's very soft, she's very nonthreatening and most people just really enjoyed the whole feel of her and the stroking of her calms them," said Baile.

Stephan Slowinski, a client at TOPS, likes to sing to Rosebud.

"Well she is very soft and cuddly and a good friend," said Slowinski.

In fact most of the people at TOPS seem to enjoy Rosebud's company.

"I like her calm demeanor and the way her feathers feel smooth," said Erica Gensel.

Baile said she knew when Rosebud was just a chick that she had the right stuff, the perfect temperament to become a therapy chicken.

"I realized that she loved to be held," said Baile. "She liked to be on my lap and be cuddled."

Rosebud is one busy chicken. She has her own Facebook page, and she also regularly visits senior citizen homes, libraries, schools and festivals free of charge.

"I do see us as being chicken ambassadors," said Baile. "Showing people that they're not dirty barnyard animals."

Rosebud wears a little diaper for inside visits and there's always hand sanitizer after. A few moments with this 4 pound hen can be a relaxing treat--just ask 29-year-old Greg Wineland.

"Feels like a miracle," said Wineland. "A wonderful experience."


Krista CerminaroFollow
Feb 1
Books and Beaks
Pinelands Branch Library hosts its first ‘Chicken Paws to Read’ event
Rosebud The Chicken poses on a clever selection of books provided by the library for the “Chicken Paws to Read” event
By Krista Cerminaro
Although talking loudly in a library is typically frowned upon, clucking certainly isn’t at Pinelands Branch Library, where it welcomed a not-so-typical guest last Tuesday.
Paws to Read, a program that allows children to read to therapy dogs, was implemented at the library a few years ago, according to Pinelands librarian Rick Yankosky.
This time, however, it was Rosebud — a certified therapy chicken — who served as their audience.
Librarian Rick Yankosky helps Julius and Elijah Harvey read to Rosebud.
The library’s first “Chicken Paws to Read” sparked a lot of interest, according to Yankosky.
“I saw that it was an opportunity, and I said yeah — I think our patrons would like that,” Yankosky said. “And, who gets to read to a chicken?”
While chickens and children altogether seem like a chaotic combo, Rosebud couldn’t have been calmer.
“Nothing bothers her at all,” said Rosebud’s owner, Gwenne Baile — also known as “The Chicken Lady of South Jersey.”
Baile said she participated in 102 events with Rosebud in 2017 — including visits to the elderly, school science fairs, fall festivals, children with disabilities and more. But this was the first event where children were able to read to Rosebud.
“I just get a kick out of the kids,” said Baile, who sat Rosebud on her lap throughout the duration of each reading session.
Librarian Danielle Haubrich reaches out to touch Rosebud with her children, Ben and Grace Haubrich
Despite the children showing some initial shyness to approach Rosebud, or even sit too close, they were ultimately pleased to pet her, and intrigued by her “Swedish fish-like” comb, as Baile best described it. Yankosky explained the program is aimed to get kids more comfortable with being around animals, as well as give them a non-judgmental audience to read to.
“If they’re not real confident with their reading, no one’s saying ‘no, [it’s] this, or that,’” Yankosky said. “It’s just them and the dog. Or — them and the chicken.”
Sisters Larissa and Abigail Sheridan of Medford, NJ, take turns reading a book to Rosebud.
“Also, they get more comfortable with animals,” Yankosky continued. “Some people we have are afraid of dogs, or have never seen a chicken before. So this gives them the opportunity to engage with an animal.”
Baile said the idea of a therapy chicken isn’t much different than a therapy dog.
“They’re very non-threatening because they’re small,” Baile said. “It just relaxes people, decreases blood pressure — what all the other therapy animals do.”
One advantage of a chicken, Baile noted, is their uncommonness.
“I think — especially with working with some autistic kids, developmentally challenged kids and young adults — is they might’ve been growled at by another dog. Not a therapy dog, but a dog. So, they’re petrified of dogs. It doesn’t matter what kind of therapy dog it is. They won’t go anywhere near it,” Baile explained. “They don’t normally have a frame of reference when it comes to chickens. Their grandmothers didn’t have chickens that they got chased around the farm, and now they’re afraid.”
However, according to Baile, not all chickens have what it takes to become therapy animals.
Rosebud sits on the lap of her owner, Gwenne Baile. Baile told the children that the red comb at the top Rosebud’s head feels like a Swedish Fish candy.
“It’s not like you can take a standard, ordinary chicken that would run all over creation and say, ‘OK, I’m going to make you a therapy chicken.’ It really is their personality,” said Baile, who noticed Rosebud’s patient nature and decided to get her certification through Chickens and You, an online training program. “I knew I had the right chicken, and because I’m a retired nurse — it just went so hand-in-hand. It was something that I knew I could really put my retirement into doing.”
As if Rosebud the therapy chicken didn’t leave behind enough of an impression at the library, she also left behind “The Little Red Hen,” a book she donated to the Pinelands Branch library — and autographed — with a footprint.