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Dairy Cattle Judging

boy with dairy cow

The North Dakota 4-H Dairy Judging Contest provides an opportunity for youth enrolled in 4-H Livestock projects to enhance their animal evaluation and selection skills. Additionally, a judging contest improves their communication and decision-making skills giving them invaluable life skills towards career development. The purpose of the 4-H dairy judging contest is to teach youth how to evaluate dairy cattle and how to make and defend their decisions. Participants will judge groups of dairy cattle classes as a team and individually. Participants will then prepare sets of oral reasons and meet one-on-one with an official to describe the reasons for placing their class placement. Competition in dairy judging fosters self-confidence, organization, critical thinking, teamwork skills and oral communication skills. Just as important, this contest advances their knowledge of the livestock and dairy cattle industry. This contest provides an educational program for all project members, including those who may not own a project animal.

The winning 4-H senior dairy judging team will represent North Dakota at the National 4-H Dairy Cattle Judging Contest at the National World Dairy Expo in Madison, WI, in October.

  • Stimulate learning in animal science and agricultural industry;
  • Youth develop positive interests and attitudes about livestock and dairy cattle evaluation, animal science and related careers;
  • Youth gain a base of knowledge of dairy cattle project and the dairy industry;Youth will utilize skills and abilities to solve everyday situations;
  • Youth gain valuable producer experience;
  • Reward 4-H members for knowledge gained in a subject matter area;
  • Provide a competitive setting where attitudes of friendliness and fairness prevail;
  • Participants will process information, analyze complex problems and make informed decisions regarding current dairy cattle and dairy industry decisions;
  • Develop teamwork, self-confidence, public speaking and decision-making skills;
  • An increased number of participants seek out higher education opportunities and careers related to animal science.

Age Divisions

  • Senior Division must be 14-18 years on December 31 and a full-time 4-H member.
  • Junior division must be 8 years of age to 13 on December 31 and a full-time 4-H member.
  • County agents and coaches are responsible for determining the age and member eligibility of participants in the State 4-H Dairy Cattle Judging Contest from their respective clubs.

Who May Enter

  • Contestants must be enrolled in North Dakota 4-H (4honline) as a full time member in the county they represent. Short-term 4-H members are not eligible to compete at the state level.
  • Counties may enter any number of participates in either age division. The high three individual scores will determine the team score.
  • All participants are eligible for individual awards.
  • Counties may combine to form a team provided neither county has more than 2 participants. Combination teams must pre-register together for the appropriate age group. A team of three (3) may not pick up a fourth member from another county.
    • Both counties and coaches from the different teams must approve combining of individuals for a team.
  • FFA members judging in the FFA contest who are also 4-H members may participate in both contest. To do so, they must be pre-registered by their county extension agent and fill out a 4-H card for each contest. Oral reasons scores will be used for both contests. There may be more than one FFA chapter in your county, resulting in a combination of members from different FFA chapters or a mixture of FFA members and non-FFA members, 4-H membership requirements must be observed.
  • 4-H members are not eligible for this contest if:
    • He/she has judged at a National 4-H Dairy Cattle Judging Contest.
    • He/she has participated in official post-secondary (university, college, junior college or technical school) competitive events of a similar nature in the same subject matter area. Neither can he/she be a member of a post-secondary team undergoing training in preparation of an event.

Pre-registration will guarantee you an NDSU parking pass to avoid paying for parking or receiving a parking ticket during a normal NDSU work week where parking restrictions apply. Parking will be for Visitors Lot E, which is directly east of Shepperd Arena. The entrance to the parking lot is off Albrecht Blvd, heading east on 14th Ave. N.

Make checks payable to 4-H Foundation and send to:
NDSU, ATTN: Holly Halvorson, Dept. 7280 FLC 219. PO Box 6050, Fargo, ND 58108.

**Deadline for winning State 4-H Dairy Cattle Judging Team to decide to go to Nationals: July 1**

Rules and Procedures
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