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The Future is Warm and Fuzzy

  We were David and Trixi Lloyd [Trixi left the farm 9th of June, 2021]. Until August of 2006 we had been unaware of alpacas - no idea what they looked like nor what possible uses they might have. That changed when David happened to see an Alpaca Canada advertisement on CBC Newsworld. He thought that raising these intriguing animals might be a revenue producing activity complementary to Trixi’s reacquired dream of having her own horse(s). Coupled with that was our desire to leave the harried pace of life in Greater Toronto. We were surrounded by (and part of) that mass of people trying to get somewhere, to get something done but, inevitably, hindered by all those others of same intent.

  Anyways, in that Alpaca Canada commercial, David was told to go to their website for more information, so he did. In the “Alpacas 101” section he learned, amongst many other things, that alpacas “are easy to raise; can be handled by anyone and are safe around children; are extremely hardy and adaptable to most climates, elevations and conditions; get along with goats, sheep, donkeys, horses, cats and family dogs” - that last was important since we had been owned by a Long-haired German Shepherd Dog, Gemma - she has since passed on, aged 14 years, in November 2019 from a brain tumour.

  David thought that these alpaca animals sounded like the ideal addition to our future plans. We wanted a farm property with a horse or two and more than 3 dogs at a time - an impossibility in most municipalities. Still, Trixi was not, as usual, overly impressed by David’s newly acquired wisdom. So he went back to the website for further instruction and read “Want to know more? The best way to learn more about the rewards of raising and breeding alpacas is to visit a farm or ranch near you.”

  So we did. On Labour Day, September 1, 2006, we made a list of 3 farms to visit on our way to visit family in Ottawa. At the first farm we visited, the owners gave us a hands-on introduction to their alpacas and spoke at length about the alpaca lifestyle. We learned a great deal about living with and caring for alpacas. Still, Trixi was not impressed. We were on our way back to the car when one of the alpacas, Gemini, started into labour - there was a nose poking out of her butt!!

  We stayed to watch the birth of a gangly-legged female cria. It changed our lives. There was no second farm visit that day! As it was, we arrived late in Ottawa that night. The very next weekend we returned to that farm and purchased that newborn cria, Gabrielle. We had embarked on our alpaca journey - the future was warm and fuzzy.

Updated July 11, 2021