From album cover shots to health checks our alpacas have had a busy week.
This week our alpacas had their annual health check with our fantastic vet from Scarsdale Farm Vets. We are very lucky to have a vet who specialises with alpacas since they are slightly odd animals - related to camels, but with characteristics closer to a horse and a lot of medication overlapping with sheep.
All our alpacas were put into their pens (we will show you how we catch them one day) and given a little feed to help them settle, then it was time for a check over. I held each alpaca one at a time, while our vet checked their weight by body condition scoring (BCS) and had a listen to their hearts.
What is BCS? Unfortunately we don’t have any scales here for our alpacas so we need a different way to keep an eye on their weights. Additionally by using the BCS method it avoids mis-reading due to a change in fleece weights. For example, we collected 4 kg of fleece from Sam this year. BCS enables you you get a hands on estimation for their condition, regardless of the amount of fleece they have. We follow the 1 - 10 guide created by Claire Whitehead and she has a great explanation of the scores and how to measure on her website