Register purebred animals for the S.D. State Fair 4-H Division

Farm Forum

Article by Andrea Paulson with contributions from Megan Nielson.

You have taken the time to select your show animal, turned in your 4-H Ownership Verification Form, and have begun working and preparing them for show. However there is one step that should not be overlooked when planning on exhibiting purebred livestock at the South Dakota State Fair, registration papers! All animals entered and exhibited in the 4-H Division purebred/ registered market or breeding animal shows at the South Dakota State Fair are required to be registered by their corresponding breed association. Here are some helpful tips and reminders about registration papers for livestock.

· July 1st is the official deadline registration papers must be submitted in order for the animal to be eligible to exhibit at your county achievement day or State Fair. 4-H members are responsible to provide a copy of the animal’s registration paper to their respective County 4-H Office. Animals requiring registration papers include: purebred breeding or market beef, dairy cattle, dairy goat, purebred breeding sheep, and purebred market swine.

· Registration papers must be in the exhibitor’s name, farm name, or an immediate family member’s name. Immediate family is defined as the 4-H exhibitor’s parents, brothers and sisters, and youth in the care of the head of household.

· Information on how to register your animal is available through your breed association. Most breed organizations allow you to register an animal online, check out your breed’s website for more details. The process of obtaining registration papers or transferring ownership varies slightly from breed to breed and species to species. Youth or their family will need to be a member of the breed association in order to receive a registration paper for their animal. There may be a small fee related to becoming a member of the breed association.

· Registration papers provide essential information about your animal such as name, birthdate, tattoo number, and lineage. All the information that you provide to register your animal should be specific and accurate. Make sure to double check the tattoos your animal has compared to the registration papers, as the tattoo is a form of identification that is frequently used.

· Properly registering your animal provides other opportunities for you to exhibit your animal outside of the 4-H show at the State Fair. Youth can also enter open class and state breed shows. There are also many other youth shows across the state and nation that focus on purebred livestock exhibition. Check with your breed association for shows in your area.

Aside from being a form of animal identification to show in 4-H, obtaining registration papers is an important part of keeping records in your purebred livestock operation. There are many benefits to registering animals, the biggest one is it allows for increased marketability of progeny from your purebred breeding animals in the future. Take the steps necessary to become a member of a breed association and learn how to properly register your purebred animals before the 2013 summer shows begin.