Brand Registration Information 

There are over 25,000 brands currently registered in South Dakota. Brands for cattle, horses, mules, buffalo (American Bison) and sheep are registered separately and a separate fee is required for each location on which a brand is registered.

  • Brand Locations
  • Characters
  • Brand Examples
  • Fees
Cattle right or left shoulder, rib or hip
Horses/Mules right or left jaw, shoulder or hip
Buffalo right or left hip
Sheep Paint brands - right or left side or hip
Hot iron brands - nose or right or left jaw
  • Registered livestock brands in South Dakota must consist of two but not more than three letters, numbers or symbols.

  • Characters should be proportionate in size.

  • Only the vertical or horizontal positions of the following are acceptable for registration.

  • Tumbling characters are not allowed.
  • Note: There can be no brand within a brand. Ex.   ®   $

    Capital print block letters of the alphabet, excluding the letter "Q". Letters may be lazy, reversed, or inverted. (See sample brands below)

    A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P R S T U V W X Y Z

    Numbers two (2) through nine (9).

    The following symbols:

    Some Examples of various designs using the letters R and S are:
    Brand Application No charge Applications for livestock brands are researched and compared with other registered brands to avoid issuing a brand which is a duplicate of, or similar to, a previously registered brand. Applicants are notified of the results of the conflict check.
    Brand Registration $25.00 PLUS $10.00 for each year remaining in current brand renew period.
    Brand Transfer $25.00 This applies to any modification of the brand ownership as currently recorded. A transfer form is generated by the brand office. Please call the office when in need of a transfer.
    Brand Renewal $50.00 Occurs every five years. Which are years ending in a 0 or 5 such as 2005, 2010, 2015.. All brands are subject to renewal between January 2 through May 1of the renewal year. To avoid cancellation, fees must be paid before May 1.
    Brand History $20.00 per brand Starting March 1, 2009, the brand office will be charging $20 per brand for running a brand history and $1 per page for copies. If the history is extensive and takes over an hour to perform, $10 per hour will be charged for additional time over the first hour. Payment is required before history is delivered.
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