For the first time in more than a decade, alpaca producers were able to show their prized animals off at the 48th annual Canadian Western Agribition.
Happy to be back for the Premier Alpaca Halter Event this year was Loretta Peters of Dreamin’ Alpacas. She says it was an easy choice to get into the alpaca business, as the amount of land she owns with her husband Bruce is the perfect size for the breed. The couple own 50 Huacaya alpacas and brought three to the show.
Both Huacaya and Suri alpacas were shown at the event. The difference between the two is mainly how they look. Peters says Huacaya look fluffy while the Suris have more of a shiny hair look.
Peters says when showing alpacas it doesn’t take as long to groom the animal as it does for showing cattle. She adds it’s because it’s not necessarily the build of the alpaca but rather the fibre consistency in which the judge looks at.
“So you want to make sure when the animal is growing their fleece, then they have the right staple length, so that’s how much fleece they can grow in a year, they’re shorn every year, just once,” Peters explains.
It makes sense as Peters says a person wouldn’t want to buy a pair of alpaca socks with short fibres or they would end up with hole pretty easily.
She adds aside from showing the animals at places like Agribition, they can be used as therapy animals.
Watch and listen to RealAgriculture’s Jessika Guse speak with Loretta Peters of Dreamin’ Alpaca’s about what it takes to show an alpaca.