Sunday, 18 December 2011

LLama Rescue Goes Well

At 10am this morning Phoebe and her horsebox set off to collect the four unwanted LLamas which were in danger of losing their lives. Usually we telephone Phoebe when we need horses and ponies transporting but this was a first for her . Never having dealt with this species before, she was well out of her comfort zone but the animals were safely boxed and just after 11 am they arrived at their temporary home just a few minutes from the shelter.
Mei and I were waiting for their arrival with feelings of trepidation, we had received a call from Phoebe saying that the llamas were totally wild and unused to being handled. This filled me with a great deal of apprehension. Angie had been good enough to offer a safe haven for the animals but if they were wild, what had I landed them with and more to the point, was I ever going to be able to find them a permanent home? These questions were whirling round my mind when the horse box pulled up and then all of a sudden there they were - four very bewildered  LLamas huddling together for comfort. My heart went out to them.
They needed only a little encouragement to leave the trailer and make their way on to the field.  You can see on one of the photos, Mei peering nervously round the side of the trailer, I too did not know what to expect but positioned myself close to them so I could take  photos of their arrival. I had no idea whether they would spit at me(LLamas do that when scared) so I did not stand too close, however the four came out quietly and slowly walked across the field looking around them all the time as though working out what sort of a place they had been brought to. They seemed to approve and made their way across the field to the stream.
As soon as they reached it,they started to drink ...and drink ....and drink.They were so very thirsty. I noticed that their coats were dirty and quite matted, they did not seem to have been clipped for several years and one has a deformed  foot and a cut on his leg. After slaking their thirst they started to potter round the field and by the time I left seemed to be settling down nicely. Fosterer Angie and her husband have 7 pet Alpacas so are used to camelids(collective term for these animals)
These boys have now been named Noel, Santa, Blitzen and Elf ( as it is so close to Christmas in case nobdy grasped that fact!)

A Very Thirsty Blitzen who is also the one with the deformed front foot.

It cost Freshfields £95 in transportation fees to rescue these boys, worth every penny but we have to supply them with Hay  and Coarse Mix for the forthcoming winter months so if anyone locally can donate a few bales of hay, it will be gratefully accepted. We also have to figure out how to worm them so Angie will be giving them small feeds to entice them to come to her and hopefully she will be able to mix in the wormer with the feed though if they are anything like horses they will immediately recognise that there is something unpleasant in the food and spit it out! Its worth a try.At this stage |I have no idea  how long it will take to win their trust but at least they are in the hands of peoiple with some experise in this type opf exotic animal.
Then of course I have to find them a permanent home but for now they need to settle down and  we neeed to get them in better condition.

These poor boys were being offered free to anyone who would take them via the freecycle online site , and the attitude of the owner was quite appalling.  There was no interest in where they might end up  , whether they were likely to be slaughtered for their meat, no interest whatsoever. I am sure when they first arrived as babies,  they were made a great fuss of, but now at age 10 years they are surplus to requirements. It makes me so angry. Initially I was unsure all 4 would be able to fit in the horse trailer and I asked the owner of we could take 2 and return Tuesday for the other two but NO, he was adamant that if any were there on Monday they would be shot.  It has been a worrying few days but I can sleep easy tonight knowing they are safe from harm

The LLama rescue in South Wales, although they were unable to take them (they have 20 plus there) have been very helpful with information  I might need  for the day to day  the care of them  and they will be looking out for a home for them also. I am so pleased to have placed them in a  knowledgeable home(albeit  short term) and feel confident that Angie and her family will be able to cope.

On a more mundane but no less important note Bess collie has gone to a home today, her new people from St Asaph were delighted with her and  they all went off  very happily together. Felix the 12 years old cat has also left us for a lovely home.

All in all a very busy and fulfilling day for animals and humans.

PS: Forgot to mention earlier that Phoebes brother is Jeremy from Monkey World in Dorset. Anybody who is a fan of this series will know Jeremy as the keeper with a great bond with the orangutans. Phoebe says that they are his life, I did think he might make a suitable partner for me as I adore orangs  but seems he has married someone else. Oh well, missed out again!

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