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Cria Care
Diseases of the Cria
Facial Eczema
Parasite Control
Did you know?...

Alpacas have very long gestation periods and "Unpacking" (birthing) should occur between 9am and 2pm - outside of these times can mean there is a problem.  If in doubt, call the vet!

Alpacas are non-seasonal breeders but have better conception rates in spring and autumn.  Pregnancy duration range is 11-13 months (commonly 345 -355 days).


Sometimes it's nice to work outside your usual comfort zone, and tackle something a bit more challenging, just to keep the old brain cells ticking along.  Ella was just such a case.  Ella was a five week old alpaca who sustained a nasty fracture to the hindleg.  Four weeks of casting appeared to have done the trick, but on removing the cast she was so happy with her new leg that she promptly jumped in the air and broke it again.  This time she stuck the bone through the skin, hooked a piece of skin under the end, and pulled that into the leg, thus setting up a beautiful infected, unstable, compound fracture.

There is precious little soft tissue coverage over the lower leg bones in alpacas, which meant a plate fixation would be extremely difficult to cover with skin.  Also, the compound nature of the injury means permanent implants at the fracture site are a bad idea.

We opted to put an external skeletal fixator (ESF) device on instead.  This allowed the bones to be manipulated back into alignment without cutting the leg open, and the pins drilled across the leg to join to the external rod apparatus.  Three rods completed the device, all very stable and strong.  Ella could walk on the leg straight after surgery.