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September 20, 2005  Choice of Guard Animal


Alpaca Training

Thank you for your great insight on alpacas.  I have a general question about alpaca security.  I have been reading about guard donkeys, would donkeys be a good protector for alpacas?  I know about the donkeys dislike for dogs and was wondering about this.

Alpaca Training

Thanks for your question about guard animals.  I do not have experience specifically with donkeys but I do have an opinion about optimal guard animals for alpacas.  The very best option in my opinion for many reasons is a llama.  Llamas are no match for a mountain lion but neither is a donkey.  Llamas are very compatible with alpacas; they eat the same thing, poop in the same dung piles, and provide a wonderful feeling of leadership and security for alpacas.  Llamas may speak a different dialect but they speak camelid, and I think they get along better than guard animals of another species.  Donkeys, while lovely animals, will be a challenge to barn management (random pooping).  They are noisy and could hurt an alpaca with a well placed kick.  Keeping in mind compatibility, cost, and effectiveness, I think a llama is the best option for general security.

Good Luck.





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