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Ohio 4-H Youth Development

Ohio State University Extension


Publications & Resources


Dairy Leasing Guidelines

These leases are required to be in place 60 days prior to exhibition and go until the completion of the project, however, check with your Extension office to see if they 1) allow leasing of dairy animals OR 2) set an earlier date for the lease to be in place by (i.e., by enrollment deadline, etc).  These leases outline rules for both the lessee and lessor as well as asking for animal description.  There is also another sheet with additional lease ideas.  These lease agreements are required at minimum, however counties can add to them (i.e., vet contact info, transportation agreement, etc).

Leasing Statement as approved 2022 
An animal cannot be leased to more than one youth per project year and may only be exhibited by the lessee in any junior exhibition, including at the Ohio State Fair.
*You may refer to this as the 1-1-1 rule which means one exhibitor, one animal,one county.
The verbiage is on the lease agreement is required at a minimum. The verbiage/leasing rules were drafted by Ohio 4-H specifically through Elizabeth Share, MS (Extension Specialist, 4-H/Youth Development Livestock and Food Animal Programs) and approved by ODA. The only things counties can do are:
1) Not allow leasing of an animal
2) Determine an earlier date that the lease has to be in place by (i.e., enrollment, 60
days prior to exhibition, etc.)
3) Add requirements (i.e., exhibitor’s name on breed registration, vet info, etc.)

As a reminder:

Leasing MARKET animals for youth exhibition projects is NOT permitted under any circumstances.

Dairy Lease 12.20.21
Additional options to add to leases

Project and Record Keeping

The Dairy Cattle Project and Record Book (127) supports 4-H members who are taking calf, yearling/heifer, and cow projects. The Dairy Resource Handbook (127R) is a required supplement for all dairy projects. Both books are available through local OSU Extension offices and online at Ohio residents get the best price when they order and pick up their purchases through local Extension offices.

These online resources support your project experience this year:

Additional Dairy Cattle Activities

Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) Important Information

On January 1, 2017, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) new regulations addressing on-farm antibiotic use in food-animal production must be implemented. The agency’s effort is aimed at eliminating the use of medically important (to human illness) antibiotics for growth promotion purposes in food-animal production and bringing therapeutic use in feed and water – to treat, control or prevent spe­cific disease – under additional veterinary oversight. Producers, veterinarians, feed mills and suppliers will all face new requirements. This affects everyone (including 4-H members as youth producers) keeping, owning, and/or raising food-producing animals. 

Please be aware that anything you may hear about the possibility of 4-H advisors being able to get a VFD for all of their club members is not accurate. Ohio 4-H members (parents/guardians) are the owners/caretakers of their livestock projects and will need to obtain any VFD they might need to properly care for their food-producing animals. To write a VFD, veterinarians must personally see the 4-H members’ animals, become acquainted with their care, and have done so recently enough (within the last six months) that they can make medical judgements. Veterinarians should not write a VFD for an entire club.

It is very important that 4-H members and their families establish a veterinarian-client-patient relationship (VCPR) prior to January 1, 2017. Click on the link below to download the Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) Fact Sheet for 4-H Youth Livestock Producers and Families, important to read and understand when taking Ohio 4-H food-producing animal projects, even if they are not intended for food production.

Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) Information 

Ohio State Fair Resources

Other Resources

  • The National 4-H dairy project books provide good information and a variety of content in three separate books.
  • The Dairy Learning Lab Kit is an invaluable resource for learning about dairy animals during club activities and skillathons.
  • The Holstein Foundation produces educational workbooks, including Dairy Judging and Showring Ready, available for free download.  

Showmanship Information


Follow the links below for different resources to help with dairy judging practices and skills.


Judging Clinic Powerpoint 2017 (uses the class above)


Project and Record Keeping

Project Guidelines
Worksheet and Lesson Plan


Photos and News Releases for Past Events

2016 Ohio 4-H Dairy Year End Report
2014 DairyPalooza News Release
2014 Ohio Dairy Judging Contest News Release
2013 4-H Dairy Judging News Release
2012 4-H Team News Release
2012 Ohio 4-H and OSU Dairy Judging Teams News Release
2012 Dairy Palooza News Release
2012 Ohio 4-H Dairy Judging Contest News Release
2011 Ohio 4-H Dairy Quiz Bowl Photos
2011 Dairy Palooza Photos
2010 National Dairy Quiz Bowl News Release and Photos
2010 NAILE 4H Dairy Judging Contest News Release
2010 NAILE Dairy Judging Contest Photos
2010 Dairy Skillathon Photos
2010 Goat Skillathon Photos
2010 Ohio Dairy Quiz Bowl and Jeopardy Photos

Dairy Breed Associations

Ohio Dairy Producers Association, 
Holstein Association USA,
American Jersey Cattle Association,
The American Guernsey Association,
Ayrshire Breeders Association,
American Milking Shorthorn Society,
Red and White Dairy Cattle Association,
Brown Swiss Association,
Ohio Holstein Association,
Holstein Foundation,

News and Publications

Hoard's Dairyman,
Dairy Herd Management,,
Farm and Dairy,
Ohio's Country Journal,
Holstein World,
All-Breed Access,
Ohio Ag Connection,
Dairy Agenda Today,

Government Organizations

Agricultural Marketing Service,
United States Department of Agriculture,
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service,
National Dairy Herd Improvement Association,
Ohio Farm Bureau Federation,
Ohio Department of Agriculture,
Ohio Livestock Coalition,
Ohio Livestock Care Standards Board,
Ohio Animal Identification,
Ohio Livestock Environmental Assurance Program,


Complete Scholarship_list, Hoard's Youth Corner
National Dairy Promotion and Research Board - For college students - Due May 31
National Dairy Shrine - Various scholarships - Due March 15
Foremost Farms - For cooperative member-owners or children of member-owners - Due late February
Ohio Farmers' Union - For children or grandchildren of OFU members - Due December 31
National FFA Scholarships