Basics before buying alpacas.....
(please read before contacting us to purchase alpacas)
- Because we care so much about the well being of our animals we want to make sure new owners are aware of certain standards that should be met when choosing to own these beautiful animals.
- Alpacas are NOT PETS. They are livestock. They should never be raised like a dog or cat. You can end up with a dangerous animal because they were not properly socialized. They will tolerate being petted but do not prefer it.
- They are HERD animals. We will not sell to anyone who wants to own just one. 1 by itself is not possible. 2 is not a herd. 3 is the barest of minimums and 4-5 is the beginnings of a herd. They will only suffer if kept alone.
- They should NOT be run with other species. The major exception is Livestock Guard Dogs (Great Pyrenees, Anatolian Shepards, etc.) or llamas. We do not recommend co-pasturing them with horses, donkeys, cows, sheep, goats, pigs, etc. Unless your animals are healthy, you are knowledgeable about livestock and you are diligent about fecal testing we don't think pasturing them together is in anyone's best interest.
- They should always be run in same sex pens. Therefore, males (both intact and geldings) and females should always be pastured separately! Never put males with females except specifically to breed.
- You MUST have no-climb fencing (2″ x 4″ holes, preferably 5′ high), shelter, electricity, water, grass pastures, hay (preferably orchard grass), fans (at ground level), and no barbed wire. Electric fencing is not the best choice.
- They will need to be shorn annually. They do not tolerate extreme heat and will need to be kept cool during the summer months. To cool them off spray their legs & bellies (not their heads and backs) with the water hose. Never use a misting device or a wading pool.
- You must have TIME to devote to your alpacas. They should be on your property, not on a piece of property away from where you live. They require daily attention. Especially in hot and cold weather. They are not like cows.
- Don't ask to buy a baby (cria) to “raise it up” the way you want. Crias MUST stay with their Dams until weaning, and then they must stay with their herd until about 12 months of age. Yes, there are exceptions, but they are quite rare.
- We will require that our clients be willing to provide regular (monthly) herd health routines. This means checking their weight, eyes, conjunctiva, ears, teeth, gums, body score, toenails (trimming), and underneath their tail. If you have white tailed deer in your area your animals will be susceptible to meningial worm and you should plan on monthly shots. We know of farms that have lost alpacas because the $1 per month shot was not given. We always say it is the cheapest form of insurance you can buy!
- RESEARCH local hay sources, vets and shearers before you bring home your animals. They are all essential to your farm.
- LEARN BEFORE YOU BUY! Join your local organization and take classes. Consider serving—you will always get more than you give. Purchase and read textbooks, attend shows, VISIT us and other farms. We always will recommend other trusted sources if we do not have what you want. Still have questions, send us an email we would be happy to help. We want nothing but the best for the animals AND their new owners!!
Saturday, October 14, 2023