I don't know why the alpacas don't like the feeling of having their halters removed. Putting them on is a lot easier than taking them off! There is a soft part of their nose, where their breathing passage can be pinched off if pressure is put on it, and I am wondering if this sometimes happens with the noseband of the halter if one is not careful, and if they are afraid of them. Feeling like one is suffocating would be an aversive experience, bad enough to remember and want to avoid. So I held their heads very, very still while I slid the noseband off, being very careful not to let it pinch or apply any pressure to the soft part of the nose. These animals are not stupid. They have a very low panic threshold and a long memory.
Thursday, September 06, 2012
A better day. Slept in, although the sleep was choppy... Got all sorts of things done: moved the alpaca pen to fresh grazing, cut an alder down for fence posts and gave the alpacas the leafy limbs (they love alder leaves!), cleaned up trash, lots of random small things that collectively, make the place look better.