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4-H Livestock Judging Manual

Publication Number: P2289
Updated: February 24, 2017
View as PDF: P2289.pdf

Livestock judging is a process of evaluating, selecting, placing, and learning the various livestock species–beef cattle, sheep, and swine. Judging is the foundation of any 4-H livestock project. Feeding, exercising, grooming, and showing the animal are all important aspects of your 4-H project; however, none may be as exciting as selecting your project animal. Selection of project animals is actually judging livestock, comparing the merits of one animal against the merits of other potential project animals. This selection process is just one of many applications of livestock evaluation and judging.

Livestock producers, breeders, feeders, buyers, and packers evaluate livestock for their potential as either breeding or market animals. These people try to relate the “form” of an animal with the “function” for which it is intended to serve. That is why livestock judging is often called the application of “form and function” to livestock.

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Contact Your County Office


Associate Extension Professor
Extension 4-H Livestock Specialist

Your Extension Experts

Extension Agent IV*
Pike County Extension Agent; Agriculture and Natural Resources; 4-H Youth Development; County Extens
Extension Associate III
Small Ruminants/4-H Livestock/Judging Team Coordinator/SARE Associate
Associate Extension Professor
Extension 4-H Livestock Specialist
Assoc Extension/Research Prof
Beef Cattle, Nutrition, Management
Extension Agent IV*
Area Agent Animal Science/ Forages

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