OUR TOP ALPACA FARMING DO'S AND DON'TS!
Alpaca farming is a great adventure. It can be a little scary if you have never raised livestock before. Raising alpacas is not difficult.
Below is a list of our top 10 Do's and top 10 Don'ts that we discovered while alpaca ranching.
Top 10 Do's
- Do talk to experienced alpaca breeders. Don't be shy! Just ask questions. Most people in the alpaca business are willing to share their experience and help beginners.
- Do plan your alpaca farm layout. Plan for growth. Look at several different farm layouts and do what will work for your individual goals.
- Do join AOBA (Alpaca Owners and Breeders Association) or
other alpaca associations. Great resources to help you get started.
- Do learn as much as you can about conformaton before purchasing an alpaca.
- Do attend alpaca shows and seminars before your first purchase.
- Do practice biosecurity from day one to protect your herd. And purchase insurance to cover any losses.
- Do get appropriate supplies. Spend the money for proper
equipment to run your farm.
- Do find a Vet with camelid experience. A Vet with alpaca
knowledge is your new best friend.
- Do find a tax preparer that has experience in livestock. They will keep you out of trouble with the IRS.
- Do find a shearer who is experienced in shearing alpacas. Someone experienced in sheep only will not shear your alpacas correctly! (We learned this the hard way.)
Top 10 Don'ts
- Don't stop educating yourself about alpacas and the alpaca business. Stay abreast of health issues and business trends.
- Don't expect this to be a get rich quick business. It will take a few years to grow your herd and business.
- Don't let your fiber just pile up in a barn or garage. Get it out to the general public. Promote your fleece. You will benefit and so will the alpaca industry.
- Don't forget to remove poisonous plants from your property prior to you alpacas arrival to your farm.
- Don't forget to close gates. Make sure you have secure latches.
- Don't hesitate to call a Vet if one of your alpacas doesn't seem right but you can't put your finger on it. Alpacas are stoic and it may be too late if you wait until the alpaca doesn't get up.
- Don't overhandle cria. You may create a berserk animal that is difficult or impossible to handle.
- Don't use fencing an alpaca can stick its head through. They may get stuck or strangle themselves.
- Don't underdose when giving worming medicine. You will create drug resistance in the parasites and not be able to get rid of them.
- Don't forget alpacas have a kick zone that you need to be aware of and avoid. They may not pack the force of a horse but it can hurt and be damaging if kicked in a vulnerable area.
Will following our do's and don'ts make your farm safe and successful? Well, it can't hurt. You will certainly discover your own do's and don'ts as you progress into the world of raising alpacas. Just keep asking questions, doing research, and educating yourself and your alpaca farm will prosper.
These do's and don'ts of alpaca farming are some things we have
learned along the way either through our personal experience or the experience of other owners that we know. Hopefully, they will help you, too.
Return from alpaca farming do's and don'ts to alpaca farm.
Return to owning alpaca home page.