Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sid and Nicky

Well, today Nick the Black Llama arrived.  He's a confident, sassy dude who has positively fallen in love with me.  His former owner commented that he never allowed anyone to touch his head and he went and sniffed my breath and gave me a version of a llama kiss.  Basically, he was very mellow and relaxed.

You can see his new picture in the pen with Sid,  I had put some field fencing between them so they could get used to each other.  Nick, you may notice, has torn up ears.  The rancher I got him from didn't know how it happened, but his ears had been pretty torn up when the rancher got him.  They're fine and they don't cause him any pain.  Which is very good.

Sid, on the other hand, was pretty uptight about the entire situation.  In spite of the field fencing, he started posturing and threatening to spit at Nick.  Nick did the same back.  I fed and watered them and hoped for the best.  I went inside for a nap.

When I went back with more food and water (I wanted to make sure everyone was happy), I found Nicky in Sid's pen.  They were acting very calm until I came in.  Then, Sid started acting like a butthead to us both.  In desperation, I took Sid for a short stroll outside the pen.  He seemed to calm down.

It seems Nick took the bottom portion of the field fence down and slipped under.  When I was away, they were acting okay.  I've been checking on them at night and they seem okay when I do.  When I was close by, Sid was really being an idiot.  No llamas spit or hurt each other yet, but they were acting like two morons.  The only thing I can think of is that Sid is desperately trying to guard or protect me from this new "intruder."  But he's being Sid, which makes him skittish and less willing to put up with me trying to pet or handle him.  Nick, on the other hand, is willing to let me handle him a lot, which makes me think he's really a people llama and not a llama who really was supposed to guard sheep, which was his job for 3-4 years.  It's quite apparent that the rancher I got Nick from took decent care of him and didn't abuse him because he's not at all fearful or skittish.  Nicky is about 8 years old.  Looking at Sid and his behavior, I'm starting to rethink Sid's age.  I think he's Nick's age or maybe a little younger because of what I'm seeing.  He's lost a good portion of his gray hair with good nutrition and he's a bit more antsy than Nick.  His teeth are cleaning up with his food too.

I've been able to do things with Nick that has taken a long while to get Sid to do.  It's okay, I understand Sid has trust issues, but it's really nice to have a llama who is more or less relaxed.  Sid is better at commands and is good at walking; Nick, I think is fine, but he's less crisp and not good at pacing with the human yet.  That's okay, again, I can work with that.

Hopefully tomorrow I won't find bloody llamas, or either (or both) missing because Nick figured out how to get out of the pen.  I think they'll want to hang out because of the food and because I'm here.  I've already gotten a taste of herd politics and I think it's pretty silly.  I'm going to get some more rocks and make certain they don't try to push open the pen.  It should be set, but I want to make sure they can't muscle their way out.

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