Three Amigos

Neighbors Chuck and Barbara have Kayla the German Shepherd and three llamas. You can just see Kayla's head peaking through the pasture grass behind the llamas in the photo below.

Whenever the girls and I - or Finn and I - walk past this pasture, the llamas come charging right up to the fence to check us out. Very curious.

The llama in the middle is one they've had since moving here three years ago. They brought two llamas with them, but this spring, one of them died. Very sad. The remaining one became quite lonely, so they sought companion llamas for him. They ended up getting two, because they were already a bonded pair and Chuck and Barbara didn't want to split them up. After careful introductions - keeping the two new llamas corralled within the pasture so they could all check each other out without getting too close - they seem to get along most of the time. On at least one occasion, though, I could hear some loud, distressing llama screams. It was dark and I couldn't see what was going on. I worried, until I remembered that they're quite capable of defending themselves against predators. I learned later they were just having a tiff among themselves. Rather like screaming spouses.

The girls love to get close to the llamas. I'm not so thrilled with the idea, afraid they'll get kicked or bitten. So I always keep them on leash, letting them close enough only to take a deep sniff. No running loose among the llamas!

Finn has walked by them only once so far. It was a great training opportunity. He was curious and wanted to get closer, but I had yummy treats in my pocket; when I asked him to sit, he did. Don't want him thinking it's his job to herd those three, even though Kayla clearly is comfortable being in the pasture with them.