• Alpaca Fact Sheet #10: Trimming Toenails

    Alpacas have soft padded feet with two toenails on each foot and a soft leathery pad. Depending on the environment the toenails require regular attention at least three to four times a year and at shearing. However, nails will grow at different rates on different animals and in particular the toenails of lighter coloured animals seem to grow at a faster rate than the darker coloured animals. Nails left unattended can twist and deform the foot causing lameness, restriction of mobility and ability to move to graze, and ultimately weight loss. more »
  • Alpaca Fact Sheet #9: Mineral and Vitamin Supplements

    The main vitamin to consider in alpaca supplementation is vitamin D and the main mineral is selenium. Both are responsible for significant pathology when deficient and both are able to induce severe toxic signs if given at too high dosage. more »
  • Alpaca Fact Sheet #8: Control of Paralysis Tick

    The Australian paralysis tick (Ixodes holocyclus) is endemic along the east coast of Australia and is responsible for thousands of livestock deaths each year and, regrettably, the alpaca is no exception. The ‘tick season’ varies from one region to another and may start as early as June/July but in some areas has been known to be active all year round. No matter what area you are in, always check with the local veterinarian as to the initial emergence of ticks – the day the first dog arrives in the surgery with tick paralysis usually heralds the start of the ‘tick season’. more »
  • Alpaca Fact Sheet #7: Administration of Injections

    This information is provided as a guide for the administration of injections but breeders may have similar techniques which are equally effective. As with most livestock alpacas require injections from time to time but very few medications are registered for use in alpacas. If unsure, consult your veterinarian. more »
  • Alpaca Fact Sheet #6: Alpacas as Herd Protectors

    Alpacas are normally gentle toward humans and other animals that are not seen as threatening but they have an innate dislike for canines and foxes. Their defence against such predators is to chase them away or pursue them and if necessary stamp at or on the predator with their front feet, rising off the ground onto their back legs if necessary before bringing their front legs down with considerable speed and force. Alpacas, when provoked in such a fashion, are very fast and will catch the predator in a short distance. There is also evidence that alpacas may deter attacks from eagles. more »