The European Union banned the use of anabolic steroids for cattle fattening in 1988. Analytical techniques able to detect trace amounts of the parent drugs and their metabolites are mandatory for the control of abuse. Stanozolol (Stan) is an anabolic steroid that is often found in injection sites and cocktails. However, it has never been detected in tissues (kidney fat, meat) or excreta (urine, faeces) taken during regulatory inspection. The difference between the structure of Stan and the other steroids (a pyrazole ring fused to the androstane ring system) is probably the cause of this phenomenon. In the multi-laboratory study described here, veal calves were treated with intramuscular doses of Stan. In the excreta of these calves the presence, absence and/or concentration of Stan and of its major metabolites 16 beta-hydroxystanozolol and 3'-hydroxystanozolol were determined. For the determination of these analytes the different laboratories used different extraction and clean-up procedures and also evaluated different analytical techniques such as GC-MS (negative chemical ionization) and LC-MS-MS. The aim of this investigation was to explore which analyte should be validated for veterinary inspection purposes.