Thursday, March 31, 2016

A Changing of the Guard

 On Tuesday 3/29/16 we lost our faithful guard llama Pele.  Pele came to McTavish Farm in 2005 and served as our sole sheep guard since.  He did his job well as we had no attacks to the sheep from outside preditors.   Although our relationship with him was strained at times, those times including foot trimming and shearing, with the help of my brave husband we worked out our differences and he became somewhat cooperative.  Unfortunately he developed a "mass" at his TMJ (jaw joint) which caused his jaw to dysfunction and he could not adequately chew.  Being as stoic as he was, I did not realize the extent of the problem until we handled him prior to the arrival of the vet.  It was then I could feel through the thick fleece just how emmaciated he was.  Obviously the problem had been going on longer than I thought.  Poor guy.  Llamas have a great way of hiding their illness.  He was no exception.  I miss seeing his serpentine form down in the pasture with the sheep in the misty morning.  Thank you Pele for your years of service.


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