A Taste of Life at Windrush Alpacas

September 5, 2007

Making Progress

Filed under: alpaca, Alpaca Care — alpacalady @ 6:46 am

Homer with a head tiltHomer our boy with the tick paralysis is showing some slow but steady progress.  He still has a head tilt but is much less staggery and is moving with a smoother gait.  Poor Homer, it really is a challenge to keep your balance when you have a long neck and heavy head that are tilted to one side.

Homer will be on antibiotics for another four days and we will continue to treat him with banamine to help relieve any pain that he has.  We have moved him in with the juvenile males as we felt there was less chance of him wrestling with them, as he improves we will put him back in with his usual group of males.  So far Homer has shown very little interest in the juvenile males pretending instead to hang out by the fence line where his usual buddies are.

It is amazing to me that just one tiny tick can cause such problems to an adult alpaca, but cause problems they do.  We still wonder if we should try keeping some Guinea Fowl or Peacocks to help keep down the tick population but with us having a pack of coyotes living across the road from us we don’t want to attract the coyotes onto our property with Guineas or Peacocks.  Another thought we have had is feeding garlic and ginger as a way to discourage ticks, but we are concerned that our alpaca fiber might end up with an odd odor as the garlic permeates through their skin.

My friend Linda who is visiting from England has seen a little of what it takes to look after a sick alpaca and did a great job with helping us handle Homer when he was in distress on Monday evening.  Linda has also worked herself into the position of dog walker and head pooper scooper!  She teases us that some people pay to go on working farm holidays and perhaps we should think of taking paying guests as a sideline.  Now there’s a thought!


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