The animal grooming policy at the Vigo County Fair and Indiana State Fair has been changed to the below:
- 4-H Exhibitors may receive clipping and grooming assistance from members of their immediate family (father, mother and siblings), from a current Indiana 4-H member, and from individuals enrolled in the Indiana 4-H Approved Animal Grooming Assistance Program. Temporary guardianships are not permitted and shall result in immediate disqualification.
This basically opens the rule up for anyone from Indiana that would like to assist 4-H members with their animals. You do not have to be a 4-H Volunteer to enroll in the program, nor does enrolling in the program make you a 4-H Volunteer. To enroll in the program, simply complete the attached application annually, complete the Animal Ethics online modules (details below), and submit your application with a copy of your Indiana driver’s license to Courtney Stierwalt (contact information is on the attached application). Once a background check is completed with no issues and verification of the completion of modules Animal Ethics is ensured , you will receive a letter with more details about the program.
NEW FOR 2019 - Beginning in 2019 applicants must also complete the online Animal Ethics modules located here https://extension.purdue.edu/4h/Pages/Online-Animal-Ethics-Program.aspx every two years. These 4 modules are intended to reiterate the importance of providing a foundation for 4-H families to start a conversation about livestock ethics and an understanding of why rules are in place. Ensure 4-H parents and adult mentors realize they are representatives of a larger livestock industry and give them tools to communicate effectively with the general public on behalf of that community. Last but certainly not least, to ensure animals in the Indiana 4-H Program are treated with the utmost care. At the conclusion of 4 modules please enter your name and county of primary residence.
Once enrolled in the program, you will be able to assist any 4-H member from any county on any animal species. To be enrolled in the program for the state fair, this application must be completed by July 1 annually and the modules must be completed once every 2 years (starting April 2019).
It is the intent that the 4-H member take responsibility for caring for and grooming his/her own animals. However, it is recognized that all youth need assistance. The purpose of this program is to provide an avenue for equal access to qualified animal grooming assistance. Those enrolled in this program should not see this as a way to do the work for the 4-H member, but should provide hands-on learning opportunities that further the skills and abilities of the 4-H member.
Please note that the program as described above is for the Indiana State Fair. While it is likely that some counties will adopt this policy for their county fairs, those decisions are made by the respective county fair boards and/or county 4-H councils. Please check with your County Extension Office for specific county fair rules.
Steps for registering for the Indiana 4-H Grooming Assistance Program
1. Read through grooming assistance program requirement overview document
2. Complete the 4 online Animal Ethics modules entitled: Purpose of 4-H Livestock Programs, Ethical Decision Making, Public Perceptions , Putting into Practice located here: https://extension.purdue.edu/4h/Pages/Online-Animal-Ethics-Program.aspx once every 2 years (starting April 2019)
3. Annually submit the Indiana 4-H Approved Animal Grooming Assistance Program Application and a copy driver’s license to Courtney Stierwalt.