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All exhibitors age 9 and older are required to take the Youth Quality Care of Animals program at Horse, cavy and dog exhibitors are exempt.



This Code of Ethics was developed IN COOPERATION WITH THE CALIFORNIA STATE 4-H, CALIFORNIA FFA ASSOCIATION, THE CALAVERAS GRANGE, WESTERN FAIRS ASSOCIATION, AS WELL AS OTHER AGRICULTURAL ORGANIZATIONS. We believe this code, when instituted, will help ensure that all exhibitors are on a level playing field, that animals are treated safely and humanely, that food safety is insured, and that a positive environment is maintained. This Code of Ethics applies to anyone exhibiting animals at the Calaveras County Fair. It includes all exhibitors who compete in structured classes of competition. All classes of livestock offered at the livestock event are included: Beef, Goats (Dairy, Meat & Pygmy), Horses, Sheep, Swine, Rabbits and Poultry. This “Calaveras County Fair Code of Ethics” will be enhanced with additional rules and regulations as new standards become necessary. All youth leaders working with junior exhibitors are under an affirmative responsibility to do more than avoid improper conduct or questionable acts. Their moral values must be so certain and positive that those younger and more pliable will be influenced by their fine example. Owners, exhibitors, fitters, trainers and absolutely responsible persons who violate the code of ethics will forfeit premiums, awards and auction proceeds and shall be prohibited from future exhibition in accordance with the rules adopted by the respective fairs and livestock shows. Exhibitors who violate this code of ethics demean the integrity of all livestock exhibitors and should be prohibited from competition at all livestock shows in the United States and Canada. The following practices or procedures are unacceptable and are defined as being deceptive, fraudulent, unethical, and inhumane in the care, fitting, preparation and showing of all classes of livestock. The use of any illegal drug is prohibited. Legal or illegal substances used to phenotypically alter the appearance of an animal entered in livestock events are prohibited (see Rule #3). Use of illegal drugs is considered a premeditated act. Furthermore, any information pertaining to the practice of illegal alteration of an animal will be turned over to the proper authorities for criminal prosecution. The following is a list of guidelines all exhibitors must follow to enter livestock at organized competitive events.


  1. All exhibitors must have viable proof of ownership available to Fair and Livestock Officials at their request. Market animals (Beef, Sheep, Meat Goats, Swine, Rabbits and Poultry) must be owned and under exhibitor’s daily care according to established rules and regulations for the fair. The official Ownership date is the date shown on the bill of sale, unless the animal was bred by the exhibitor, in which case calving or birth records must be shown. Local rules will determine ownership requirements for non-market animals. Registered breeding livestock must show the exhibitor as the owner of the animal on the breed association papers or certificate

  2. No exhibitor will be allowed to show an animal which has been previously sold at an auction or sale as a market animal through another fair or livestock show, whether or not there is an actual change of ownership (progress level shows excluded)

  3.  Any method used to misrepresent the age of an animal for a class in which it is shown is deceptive and considered illegal. Showing an animal for another individual by claiming ownership in order to show in a specific livestock class or event is prohibited. False ownership is illegal.

  4. Exhibitors are expected to care for and groom their animals while at fairs or livestock shows.

  5. Animals shall be presented to show events where they will enter the food chain free of violative drug residues. The act of entering an animal in a livestock show is the giving of, consent by the owner, exhibitor, leader, advisor and/or absolutely responsible person for show management to obtain any specimens of urine, saliva, blood, or other substances from the animal to be used in testing. Animals not entered in an event which culminates with the animal entering the food chain shall not be administered drugs other than in accordance with applicable federal, state and provincial statutes, regulations and rules. Livestock shall not be exhibited if the drugs administered in accordance with federal, state and provincial statutes, regulations and rules affect the animal’s performance or appearance at the event. If the laboratory report on the analysis of saliva, urine, blood, or other sample taken from livestock indicates the presence of forbidden drugs or medication, this shall be prima facie evidence such substance has been administered to the animal either internally or externally. It is presumed that the sample of urine, saliva, blood, or other substance tested by the laboratory, to which it is sent, is the one taken from the animal in question, its integrity is preserved and all procedures of said collection and preservation, transfer to the laboratory and analysis of the sample are correct and accurate and the report received from the laboratory pertains to the sample taken from the animal in question and correctly reflects the condition of the animal at the time the sample was taken, with the burden on the owner, exhibitor, leader, advisor or absolutely responsible person to prove otherwise.

  6. Livestock shall not be exhibited if drugs administered in accordance with federal, state, local statutes, regulations and rules affect the animal's performance or appearance at the event.

  7. Any surgical procedure, injections or insertion of foreign material, substance or drug or the external application of any substance (irritant, counterirritant or similar substance) which could affect the animal’s performance or alter its natural contour, confirmation or appearance of an animal’s body is illegal. This includes vegetable oil, silicone, air or any other substance used to alter the shape of the animal. Acceptable practices of physical preparation, which are allowed, include clipping of hair, trimming of hooves, or dehorning

  8. The balancing of the udder by abnormal means which includes the use of a mechanical contrivance or the injection of fluid or drugs, setting the teats and/or occluding (sealing the ends) with a mechanical contrivance or use of a chemicalpreparation is illegal. Treating or massaging the udder or its’ attachment with an irritant or counter irritant is prohibited. The use of inhumane showing and/or handling practices or devices such as striking animals to cause swelling, using electrical contrivances or other similar practices are not acceptable and are prohibited. Other practices, unless under the written authority of a licensed veterinarian, that are not acceptable or prohibited include, but are not limited to, liquid diets for lambs, excessive shrinking, excessive exercising, tying animals with the feet off the ground, and electric stimulation.

  9. Direct criticism or interference with the judge, fair or livestock show management, other exhibitors, breed representatives, breed classifiers, or show officials before, during, or after the competitive event is prohibited. In the furtherance of their official duty, all judges, fair and livestock show management, or other show officials shall be treated with courtesy, cooperation and respect and no person shall direct abusive or threatening conduct toward them. No owner, exhibitor, fitter, groomer, trainer, leader, advisor or absolutely responsible person shall conspire with another person or persons to intentionally violate this Code of Ethics or knowingly contribute or cooperate with another person or persons either by affirmative action or inaction to violate this Code of Ethics. Violation of this rule shall subject such individuals to disciplinary action of Fair Management and considered final.

  10. The application of this code of ethics provides for absolute responsibility for an animal’s condition by an owner, exhibitor, leader, advisor, or participant whether or not he or she was actually instrumental in or had actual knowledge of the treatment of the animal in contravention of this code of ethics.

  11. Show management reserves the right to require animal health certificates from a licensed veterinarian. Health inspections and diagnostic tests may be made before or after animals are on the livestock show premises for exhibitor and animal safety, or to inaugurate disease control procedures which may become necessary in emergencies as determined by animal health officials.

  12. Any violation of the “Calaveras County Fair Code of Ethics”, State Rules, Calaveras County Fair Rules or Residue Avoidance Program, or specific rules as designated by the Calaveras County Fair will result in forfeiture of premiums, awards, disqualification, and will result in probationary status and/or loss of eligibility for future participation in organized livestock competition. Possible civil penalties may be imposed by the proper authorities based on evidence provided by the livestock show of exhibitors in violation of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act or the animal mistreatment, neglect, and abandonment laws that apply on the local, state and national levels. Other cooperating shows will be notified of the action taken by the show management, which may affect the eligibility of the individual, group, or sponsoring organization for participation at other show

  13. The act of entering of an animal in a fair or livestock show is the giving of verification by the owner, exhibitor, fitter, trainer, or absolutely responsible person that he or she has read the Code of Show Ring Ethics and understands the consequences of and penalties provided for actions prohibited by the code. It is further a consent that any action which contravenes these rules and is also in violation of federal, state, or provincial statutes, regulations, or rules may be released to appropriate law enforcement authorities with jurisdiction over such infractions.

  14. Junior Livestock Auction: At the time the animal is sold at the auction, the exhibitor is held directly responsible for the animals that are rejected from the processing center for any reason.



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