How to Own a Pet Llama

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How to Own a Pet Llama. Llamas, which are mammals that are in the same family as camels, alpacas and vicunas, are becoming increasingly popular pets due to their mild manners, cleanliness and friendly dispositions. Keeping a llama as a pet, however, requires a basic understanding of the animal itself, as well as its very specific needs. Read on to learn more.

Things You'll Need

  • Llama food
  • Grooming accessories
  • Veterinarian familiar with llamas

Own a Pet Llama

Determine if you have the right kind of property and accommodations to fit the needs of the llama. Llamas need plenty of room to run around and graze, as well as shelter to avoid extreme weather conditions. Your property must also be zoned for livestock.

Consider whether you would be able to own more than one pet llama. These animals are extremely social and need the company of at least one other llama in order to thrive in their environments.

Obtain a reliable source for llama supplies, such as food and grooming accessories. Llamas require a very specific diet to remain healthy, and wool shearing, toenail trimming and general grooming practices are all a part of keeping your llama healthy. Check out Llamapaedia.com to find llama supplies near you (see Resources below).

Find a veterinarian that is familiar with the care of llamas. Llamas require a very specific schedule when it comes to vaccinations, de-worming, blood tests and health certifications (if you want to transport a llama across state lines). A qualified veterinarian will be able to show you how to keep complete health records, which is essential if you want to own a llama.

Locate a reputable breeder from whom to buy your llama. One of the best ways to find the right breeder is to contact the Alpaca and Llama Show Association (ALSA), which can recommend a breeder in your area (see Resources below). Attending ALSA shows and competitions is also an excellent way to meet breeders and find out about any llamas they might have for sale.

Tips & Warnings

  • It is best not to over-handle or socialize with llamas when they are very young, since this causes them to regard humans the same way as other llamas when they become adults. This means lots of spitting, neck wrestling, and other potentially undesirable behaviors.

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