Wednesday, November 20, 2013

A horse is a horse of course of course.....

That is unless you are a llama? Named Sinbad?
Apparently he doesn't want me to tell his story? Oopsie! Sinbad doesn't know he is a llama. He thinks he is a horse. He grew up with several horses so that's the only life he's ever known. Apparently it can do weird things to a llama's perception of himself. 

And here is the rest of the story... Several years ago we adopted a beautiful, gigantic Shire horse named Bull. 

Bull's family had to re-home Bull and the rest of their animals. I was so excited to even THINK of owning a draft horse we scooped him right up. He settled in with our other two horses and promptly made friend with our little donkey Cassper, who bosses Bull around terribly. That big old 19 hands tall horse is last on the totem pole here? And his boss is little old crooked back Cassper? Bull is a typical draft horse- gentle and kind. 

A few weeks later we got a call from the gal who adopted Sinbad. We never met Sinbad, he had gone to his new home before we picked Bull up. She asked if we could take Sinbad too. Apparently her alpacas AND llamas were beating the tar out of Sinbad and she could NOT figure out why? Of course we said yes, we had heard how close he was to Bull. 

When Sinbad arrived I went into the barn and brought Bull out to the fence. They snuffled noses almost like they were saying, I am SO glad to find you-now we are home. It made me cry to see them greet each other that way. As if their hearts had been broken during their time apart. Sigh. Never try to tell ME animals don't grieve or remember each other!

As we've gotten to know Sinbad, we think we have the answer to why he did not fit into an alpaca farm. He truly thinks he is a horse. He is never far from Bull even though we have 7 of our other llamas out with the horses. Sinbad guards Bull AND the other horses, even Cassper. He really doesn't seem to worry much if the LLAMAS are worried though. He gets very upset if any of his horses are upset and will pace the fence with his ears back letting us know he does not appreciate OUR behavior. (we are usually just brushing them).

We were not expecting a llama/horse but he and Bull will be forever friends. I'm glad we can give that to them here. Watching Sinbad the confused (or maybe not?) llama go about his daily life is always a hoot. Specially if I am not handing out the treats fast enough! I adore that silly, mixed up fellow!

Smooches til next time!

Sunday, November 03, 2013

Three little trees & what a view!

So say the llamas, horses and donkey! This tippy top of the hill is where you will most often find them all having "meetings" (also known as NAPS). They tell me it is the best place to see our entire  farm and valley. To keep everyone safe they said. They named it Ryan Farm Look Out Pointe. 

Now let's decode the llama-speak a little bit. Safety can mean a number of things to a llama. Numero uno top priority is sheep safety. Closely followed by llama safety. You know, safe from the bad guys. Like people who want to visit with them or (gasp) catch them? 

Look out of course means seeing me coming up the hill. Decode a little more look out, warning warning, here she comes. Even though they do tend to think immediate evasive action is appropriate, I beg to differ. 

They must not fully realize just how safe it truly is up there. The highest spot on the farm is at the top of that hill in the pasture. The kind of hill you walk up diagonally, zig zag style. If  you walk straight up the hill, it is so steep you end up crawling because the hillside comes up to meet you. Vertically. Did I say steeply?? 

Good advice I've learned from experience. If you lose your step, tuck and roll. And roll. When you finally end up at the bottom of said hill, be sure you stick the landing proudly. Jump to your feet with your hands high up in the air. You won't get a medal for your impressive performance, but you will shock the sheep and llamas into silence long enough to gather up your dignity. 

After that, you will be at the critter's mercy. The butt of their jokes, hoof pointing and snickers behind your back every time they see you.  Guffaws of laughter when they think you won't hear them. Most often they forgo the formality of being kind by just laughing til they can't stand up- right in front of your face. 

 And this is THE perfect time to remind them all who holds the keys to every Fruit Loop in the stash! ;0)

Next post I am going to dish some dirt on THEM. We'll start with a llama who thinks he is a horse. Stay tuned!  

Smooches from us all!
...where sheep may safely graze.