A Taste of Life at Windrush Alpacas

May 8, 2009

Well I guess she’s feeling better!

Filed under: alpaca, Alpaca Care, Alpaca Health, Alpacas, camelids, General — alpacalady @ 6:47 am

In previous blog entries I have mentioned our pregnant dam Chai who has been suffering with arthritis in her foot that appears to be brought on by her pregnancy.

 This is the second time this has happened to Chai and our vet has recommended that we put Chai on an arthritis supplement and use banamine on the days when Chai seems to be in more discomfort.

 After checking the various options available we decided to use Dr. Rob Pollards Herbal Arthritis Formula that was developed specifically for alpacas and llamas.  We have been very pleased with the results of the Herbal Arthritis Formula.  It takes about two weeks for it really to take effect but once it kicks in it really does seem to help.  Still on certain days it has been obvious that Chai was experiencing pain in her foot to the point where she did not put any weight on it.

 As Chai is now in her third trimester of her pregnancy I have been concerned that at times we have had to administer banamine to her for a couple of days in a row.  I worry about the effect it will have on her unborn cria.  Drugs in pregnancy are generally not a good thing especially in the first and last trimester, but sometimes you have to use them. 

I started thinking about other things we could do to help Chai’s arthritis and then remembered that our vet’s wife had once given us some emu oil and mentioned that it was good for muscle aches and arthritis.  On reading about emu oil it definitely is promoted for providing relief to arthritis sufferers and so I decided to try the emu oil on Chai’s leg and foot.  

On the first day Chai was not too impressed.  Probably the wet feeling of the oil against her skin unsettled her.  I painted the emu oil on the affected area with a sponge brush and then massaged it in. 

The second day of using the emu oil Chai tolerated it much better and was happy to stand while I massaged the oil into her leg and her foot.

So we have continued with the Herbal Arthritis formula and the emu oil and have noticed a great improvement in Chai.  She is putting weight on her leg again and seems to be in less pain. 

The best indication of Chai’s improvement was not the fact that she was putting more weight on her leg, but the fact that her behavior changed.  When Chai was in pain with her foot she would patiently wait in her pen after the morning feed for me to bring her arthritis formula to her (it is a fine powder and so we mix it in with some beet pulp shreds to make it tasty for Chai to eat) and, when needed, a dose of banamine.

Now that Chai is feeling better she has taken to letting herself out of her feeding pen.  Her pen gate does not have a latch on it so she is able to push the gate open with her nose, the last few days by the time I get to bringing the arthritis formula to Chai she has gone, leaving an empty pen behind her.

It is great to see Chai in less discomfort, let’s hope she stays that way.

Rosemary

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