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Are you interested in keeping llamas? Homesteading is becoming increasingly popular these days. Many people are starting microfarms, and trying their hand at raising cattle and livestock. Llamas may not be the most common option, but they definitely have lots of fans. Of course, keeping and handling llamas is much easier when they have been properly trained. A Roswell, NM veterinarian offers some llama training tips below.
Llamas can be trained to do many things, from pulling carts to carrying packs to being ridden. You’ll of course want to customize your llama’s education depending on what you want him to do. However, we do recommend that all llamas be taught to accept being haltered, led, and groomed, and having their teeth and feet handled. It’s also a good idea to teach your llama to go in and out of a trailer and to come when called.
Llamas learn quickly, which is both good and bad. On the one hand, that makes them easy to train. However, it’s also easy to train them to misbehave! Always use positive reinforcement to reinforce good behavior.
Keep in mind that, like most prey animals, llamas are naturally skittish. Once your llama has formed a bad association with something, it’s going to be very, very difficult for you to override that first impression. If your llama gets scared of the trailer the first time he goes into it, he may very well try to resist entering it every time after that.
Many of our animal companions are creatures of habit. Llamas are no exception! Try to work with your llama every day, even if it’s just for a few minutes. This should continue even after your llama is trained, as you’ll need to revisit and refresh your llama’s lessons regularly.
Llamas all have their own personalities. While some pick things up very quickly, that isn’t always the case. Tailor your training to suit your llama’s age and personality.
No surprises here! Snacks are a great way to reward and motivate your four-legged friend. Most llamas absolutely love fruits and veggies, such as apples, carrots, and sweet potatoes. However, you’ll need to cut them into small pieces, as otherwise your pet may choke. Ask your vet for specific recommendations.
Do you have questions about llama care? Contact us, your Roswell, NM animal clinic, today!