Basics of Judging

Each judge on looks at numerous aspects of each animal when placing the classes.  The traits that are considered, in order of importance (most important first) are listed below.  It is extremely important to remember that just because one trait is more important than another, that does not mean that the less important trait doesn't impact the show results.  Judging your cattle on just one trait, or just muscling alone will hold you back.


Both the topline and hindquarter are extremely important in your cattle.  This is much more important in the steer classes than the breeding classes. 

Frame Size

A moderate frame size of 7.0 is ideal and any deviation from that, either higher or lower is frowned upon by the judges.  While frame size is important in both breeding and market classes, it tends to be slightly more important in the breeding stock classes, especially bulls.

Front and Hind Legs

8.0 is the ideal rating for front and hind legs on and deviation from that, both higher and lower is frowned upon.  This trait takes into account the shoulders, and the set of the hind legs.


Also known as depth of rib, this another trait where higher is better.  Capacity is given more weight in breeding stock classes, especially females, than it is in market classes.

Neck Extension

Neck extension is a trait where higher is better.


The more bone the better for cattle on  This is more important in breeding stock than market classes.


Color does have a small impact on the shows results on  Black cattle are typically given a very small preference to other colors.  Spotted cattle also tend to be at a small disadvantage.  Spots on breeds like Simmental and Maine Anjou also have a larger impact on the breeding classes for those breeds.


Last Updated: 2/24/2007 7:25:13 PM