Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Going to the vet

In order to participate in an alpaca show, the alpaca has to pass a vet exam. The exam consists of the vet checking the animal over, and taking their temperature. Shows want to make sure an animal with a contagious illness does not attend. No one wants to go to a show if they are risking illness to their most prized animals. When we were first starting our alpaca business, there had been issues with an illness referred to as "snots". This was before our time in the industry, but from what I have put together, it was just like a sounds, a bad cold. It sounds like it made the rounds at shows, and while not a super serious illness, it concerned people when they arrived home after a show and all their animals had the "snots." I have heard theories that it lead to some premature births, and possibly pregnancy absorption. But other than that, I haven't heard much more about it. During our time in the show circuit, we have not run across anything significant. One year Lightning had a bit of an upset tummy after a show, so he may have picked up some virus. But like I said, nothing significant.

The vet fills out a CVI (certified vet inspection) form for all the animals going to the show. You take this with you to the show, in order to prove the animals passed the vet exam.

We have linked up with Ashton Stone Alpacas. We are taking 4 of their animals to the Best of The U.S. Alpaca Show & Auction and in return they are farm sitting for our animals while we are gone at the show. We also decided to go to the vet together. In a way, I looked at this at a trial run, as I'm not sure how J and I will handle 10 alpacas away from home.

Thankfully Jillian from Ashton Stone Alpacas was able to come with us to the vet. As a trial run, we have some fine tuning to attend to before the real deal - in 10 days! At our farm, Cavalier broke out of his halter and was almost running loose in the woods. Lesson learned that we need to make sure all halters are on very well, we don't want any escapees. We also learned that Lily should not be put into the trailer first. She freaked out (ie she was screaming and running around the trailer in a panic) until we could get some friends in their with her. Then at the vet, we almost lost Po when she jumped out of the trailer before we were ready for her.

On the positive, we found out that indeed we can fit 10 alpacas in our trailer. There was plenty of room, so we could fit more if we ever need to. We also saw that all the alpacas are halter trained. Some better than others ;) but they all are doing ok.

Our issue is that we have a 3 prong led that we can lead 3 alpacas from one led. However, we can't fit all 3 through the door of the trailer. So somewhere along the way we have to go from 3 separate leds to 1 led of 3.

By the time we got home from this visit I was beat! I can only imagine how exhausted I am going to be when J and I are on our own at the show. It's gonna be a very busy weekend!

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