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Show Rules

All shows will be conducted under the rules and regulations of the South Australian Rabbit Association Incorporated. SARA Inc. reserves the right to decline entry of an exhibit where any show rule is not strictly adhered to.


All exhibits in breed classes must be wearing approved leg rings with the only exception being rabbits that have been marked with an official tattoo of the club or country of origin. For enquires regarding the purchase of rings or tattoos please contact the SARA Ring Registrar.

Transfers & Stud Prefixes

A rabbit that has changed hands and is wearing a ring or tattoo that is registered to a previous owner must be transferred to the current owner/exhibitor. A transfer form is to be completed bearing the previous owner’s details and signature. The transfer form must be submitted at the same time as your entries or the exhibit will not be eligible to be shown. A transfer fee will be applicable as per current rules as set by the committee. For enquires regarding the transfer of exhibits please contact a Committee member.

It is a requirement that all exhibits carry the correct stud prefix at time of entry, therefore indicating the breeder of that exhibit (The breeder is recognised as the person that had possession of the doe at the time of birth). This also includes breeders from interstate and other clubs.

All rabbits are entered at the risk of the owner. SARA Inc. takes all due care but accepts no responsibility for the health and wellbeing of rabbits attending our shows.


All rabbits will undergo a health check before being allowed to enter the show hall. An experienced person will carry out this check. Vetting is compulsory and will be carried out for 1½ hours prior to commencement of the show.

  • Never bring a sick or diseased animal to a rabbit show!
  • Common sense and common courtesy should be observed at all times!

The vetting officer will examine your rabbit/s to ensure that they are not showing obvious signs of ill health, which may be contagious to other exhibits. The vetting officer will check for signs of mucus or other discharge from the rabbit’s nose, eyes and genital area (rabbits with faecal contamination will not be vetted). If a rabbit is believed to have a higher than normal temperature the vetting officer will measure it by what means are available on the day. If the rabbit’s temperature is confirmed to be high it will be vetted out. A rabbit that is infested with fleas or mites will also be refused entry to the hall. Sick or diseased animals will not be permitted to remain at the venue. Rabbit’s nails must be clipped prior to vetting. In the event of a rabbit being vetted out the owner may lodge and official protest to the show secretary. In this case the show secretary will call the judge for a final decision on the situation.

Rabbits Not in a Fit Condition to be Judged

Any rabbit removed from the benching area or judging area that is not in a fit condition to be exhibited or judged shall incur a two (2) month suspension. This applies to all exhibits in the show hall. A permanent ban will be enforced upon any rabbit that is either vetted out or removed as above at three (3) consecutive shows at which it is exhibited.


Judging will follow the BRC breed standard, with the ARBA breed standard being used for any additional breeds not covered by the BRC. In entering your rabbit you are inviting the personal opinion, on that particular day, of the duly appointed judge. Protests regarding a judging decision may be sent, in writing, to the Show Secretary within seven (7) days of the date of the show, along with a deposit of $50. If the committee votes to uphold the judge’s decision the deposit will be forfeited.

Breed Classes (Competitive section)

All rabbits entered in the competitive section must be in the show hall no later than half an hour before the advertised show start. At the discretion of the show committee classes may be reduced and/or combined depending on entries. Rabbits with damaged ears, eyes, etc., or desexed rabbits cannot be shown in breed classes. All rabbits entered in the competitive section will not be allowed to leave the show hall (pen shows only) until an official has checked them out. Exhibitors must not remove the pen tags from their cages unless accompanied by an official. Once an exhibit has had it’s pen tag removed the exhibitor forfeits the right for that exhibit to take any further part in the competitive section of an unfinished show.


The minimum age of a rabbit entered in a Kitten or Novice class is 10 weeks. Age brackets are fixed as follows: Kittens to be 10 weeks & under 14 weeks; Juniors to be 14 weeks & under 5 months; Adults to be 5 months & over. Ages are calculated as of the day before the show.

Exhibit Previously Owned By A Judge

No rabbit previously owned by a judge shall be eligible for exhibition under that judge until a period of three months has elapsed from the date of registration or transfer being recorded.

Show Cages

Exhibitors must supply their own show cages. Cages must have a solid leak proof tray/base, of which cannot exceed ½ the total height of the cage. There is no preferred colour for the bases. Wood construction of any type is not allowed. Cages should be designed and maintained in a condition so as not to cause injury to stewards or the rabbits. All cages must be top opening and should be fitted with a 30mm curtain ring on the front face of the cage to facilitate pen tag attachment. At the exhibitor’s discretion, cage curtains made of white cotton may be attached covering three sides only leaving the cage front and top clear. A cage curtain must not impede the stewards’ access. Cages are not to be marked with your name or stud prefix. Plastic crates are not allowed in the competitive section but you may use plastic crates in the novice section only if they are modified in such way that allows good ventilation and circulation of air for the rabbit. Cages can be divided if the rabbits being exhibited are of the same breed and the size requirement is not compromised. Pet rabbits entered in un-rung classes may be caged together at the discretion of the owner. The height of the cage should give sufficient clearance so that the rabbit’s ears cannot contact the lid. A maximum height of 45cm applies to all show cages. The size requirements below are a recommendation for the well being of your rabbit. Common sense should be used at all times.

  • Dwarf & Miniature breeds up to 2.25kg (5lbs) – 30 x 40cm
  • Medium sized breeds up to 3.65kg (8lbs) – 35 x 50cm
  • Large and Giant breeds – 40 x 60cm

The Show Committee can refuse cages of poor design and has the final say regarding the suitability of all show cages and curtains.


All animals must be handled with care and kindness. Anyone mistreating an animal will be severely dealt with. No rabbit is to be lifted by its ears or the scruff of the neck. The grooming of all breeds of rabbits at Pen Shows must be completed 30mins prior to show commencement. The exception being long coated breeds, which are allowed to be groomed until 10mins prior to show commencement. There is no further handling allowed after this time unless you choose to have your rabbit/s checked out. At the discretion of the Show Committee any animal that is unable to be handled safely (i.e. vicious) will not be judged and could be banned from future shows. There are no grooming restrictions at Table Shows.

Feed and Water

Owners are permitted to supply foodstuffs and attach water bottles to their cages as they see fit. The vetting officer, show secretary or other committee member may supply water to any animal if they feel it is necessary to do so. Water bottles should be attached in a manner that does not impede the steward’s ability to open the cage and remove the rabbit easily.

Sales of Rabbits at Shows

The exchange, gifting or sale or rabbits at SARA shows is prohibited. Only rabbits being exhibited in the show are allowed on the grounds of the venue hired by SARA Inc.

Prohibition from Exhibiting or Attending Rabbit Shows

Any member, in whose rabbitry a case of Myxomatosis is confirmed, must immediately notify the Secretary of the Association. The member may not exhibit at any show until the elapse of 28 days from the last death and must complete a minimum 28 day quarantine to ensure the wellbeing and safety of members' rabbits.

Any member, in whose rabbitry a case of Calici Virus (RHDV) is confirmed, must immediately notify the Secretary of the Association. The member may not exhibit, judge, steward or handle rabbits at any show or attend any venue where rabbits are exhibited until the elapse of 120 days from the last death and must complete a minimum 120 day quarantine to ensure the wellbeing and safety of members' rabbits.

Members must not exhibit if they have had unexplained deaths in their rabbitry within 14 days before a rabbit show. Calici Virus should be expected in any sudden death especially if more than one rabbit in the household has died. Any member concealing the fact that they knowingly have either Calici Virus or Myxomatosis in their rabbitry will incur a 12 month suspension from all SARA functions. Any member that exhibits at a SARA show while knowingly having a confirmed case of either Calici Virus or Myxomatosis in their rabbitry will receive a life ban from SARA and all its functions.


  • Misconduct will not be tolerated. Persons behaving in a manner deemed to be                    inappropriate will be asked to leave the show. Serious breaches may result in the offender being banned from future shows and having their membership terminated.
  • Smoking is not permitted inside the hall or in the immediate area of all exits.
  • Children must be under parental supervision and control at all times.
  • All Instructions issued by the Show Committee must be followed.


If the temperature the day of or the day before a scheduled show is forecast 31°C or above the show will be cancelled. The decision will be made 4 days prior to the show, using the Channel 2 weather. The committee reserves the right to alter this ruling at its discretion.

Alterations to Show Rules

These rules may be amended in future at the discretion of the Committee. Changes will be printed in the newsletter and/or notification in writing will be sent to all members.