Tuesday, May 17, 2011

1st Cria of 2011

This morning when I went out to feed the alpacas, I just knew Tehya was in labor.

For one, I noticed a few days back that her back hips were very loose. If you've ever been pregnant or watched a pregnant woman, near the end of the pregnancy their hips really loosen up. I remember feeling like I was walking all funny with hips that didn't work right. This is nature's way of helping in the birthing process.

Then, on Monday we decided to shear all our older female alpacas, one of which was Tehya. In the middle of shearing J says "is she even pregnant?" We looked at her belly, felt her belly, and were skeptical. Then he went to shear her back end and exclaims "I can practically see the cria's head poking out the back!" There was no doubt there was a cria and it was in birthing position. We actually sped up shearing her out of fear that cria was coming right then. After shearing she didn't act like she was in active labor, but we knew it would be soon. That cria was in position, and Tehya was already on day 355 (average due date is 350 days gestation).

When I got up this morning and went out to feed the alpacas, Tehya walked over to eat her grain, but walked slow and loopy with her loose hips. Now I'll give some additional details that some of you might not want to read about, and if so, feel free to skip the rest of this post. In my next post I'll post pictures of this new cria :) (I'm working half way across the state right now, pictures will have to wait until tonight). For those that want to know the impending labor signs, I'll post on.

Tehya walked over to her grain bowl, she walked and pooped at the same time. This is NOT normal for alpacas. They typically poop in a communal pile and are deliberate about pooping in the spot (for the most part). They don't walk and poop. This tipped me off that she was not completely in control of all that was going on in her back end. I also realized that when I came out with the grain, all the other ladies were cushed outside. Tehya was cushed alone in the barn in front of the fans. It was cool last night and these girls were all just shorn. Only a woman in labor (or having a hot flash) would want to be in front of the fans on a morning like this.

I watched Tehya walk and peeked at her back end. She was very puffy, which usually indicates dilation and effacement. I was just sure she was in labor. But we've had so many false alarms over the years, I was still cautious. I told the kids I was sure she was having that baby today, but we better get on with our day.

I had to work today, I had to be in court half way across the state. J had worked overnight, so I left a note for him that I thought Tehya was in labor, but it also could be a false alarm. Just before 1 p.m. J called to say Tehya had her cria. It is a female and he is pretty sure she is rose grey!!! That is what I've been saying she'd have (J kept saying it was what I wanted her to have LOL).

What a great start to cria season!!!

I won't be home until later tonight. Stay tune for new cria pictures.

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