Michigan 4-H Dairy Cattle Lease

The Michigan 4-H Dairy Cattle Lease/Borrow Program allows youth who might not otherwise have the means to raise/own a dairy heifer or cow to participate in the 4-H dairy project. By leasing or borrowing an animal, the youth will develop character, knowledge, life skills and a sense of responsibility with their project, while at the same time gaining an increased appreciation for animal agriculture and food production.

Not every county fair or show allows leased animals, some may place restrictions on the number of animals or only allows heifers (not cows) to be leased. Be sure to check with the dairy superintendent or fair board for each specific show or fair to make sure leased animals are allowed and what (if any) documentation is needed prior to registering for the show.

If you’re interested in borrowing or leasing a dairy heifer or cow for your 4-H project, it may be helpful to have a written lease agreement between the 4-H member, parents and dairy animal owner that lists and explains the duties, details and responsibilities that come with leasing a heifer or cow. This will also help to clarify the expectations so there are no surprises for any of the parties involved. The Michigan 4-H Dairy Cattle Lease template is an example and may be used as a template, modifying as needed for the specific leasing situation.

Michigan State University Extension hopes this reference will be adapted and utilized to meet the needs of the county, 4-H youth, parents and dairy animal owner and is no way intended to regulate or endorse leasing dairy animals.

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