(Long, picture heavy post.)
Well, we made it through the shearing. Sheer willpower on my part, as I woke with a splitting sinus headache. I wasn't sure if I'd be able to do much, but it went alright, if you don't count me feeling like I was going to throw up whenever the clippers were on. But I digress...
Rama did well, she was the last to be shorn. She was pretty good, she wanted to leave, as soon as the trimming was finished, but she didn't fight, she was obstinate about going in and made it so we had to push her butt until she begrudgingly moved into the crush. I call her "the diva" for a reason, folks. Her hair is much, much thicker than the others, it should spin up into a nice warm yarn. Pretty color of chocolate, too.
Lama was scared the whole time. She kept chattering, and trying to nibble on the rope. Planning the great escape, I guess. But she did stand quietly otherwise, and seemed quite happy once the hot, heavy hair was off. Her hair is thinner, still nice, almost all white, except for 2 or three little tan spots, and one dime sized black as black can be spot on her chest. Looks like she has an oil spot on her...
Ding Dong was the one we were worried about, and she didn't disappoint. We tried to get her out of the corral. She jumped the fence, and ran straight for the road. (No traffic, thank you, Lord). The guys are making a human fence, walking her back AWAY from the road, and I am calling and shaking her feed bowl. Ding Dong finally decided that feed was ok, and came in the pen again. She already had a halter on, so the shearer guy was able to snap on a lead and start her to the crush. The fight was on. She stopped. She grunted, snorted, pulled, and when Husband tried to get behind her, she tried pushing against him... No kicking at that point, however. (Thankfully!)
She was then forced into the crush, and then pulled as hard as she could against the lead, in fact, she was actually choking herself. The shearer, not sure if she was going to be able to tolerate it, buzzed the clippers over her back to see if she could even handle the noise. She could. Barely.
Let's just say she was done quickly, and with little pomp. He took the halter off, and she flat bolted to the other end of the field, and glared at us for most of the afternoon. BUT, she is halter free, (it had been on so long the skin was bare and starting to get sores), and she is fur-lessened, so less problems in the summer. Her hair was pretty matted, and the ONE TIME it decided to rain, was when she was there, so I will have to see how usable her fiber is. Fortunately, llama doesn't stink, as does dog, when wet.
Lorenzo actually went first. We have found that he won't be a 'gentleman' when he is in close quarters with the girls, so we had him in where the crush was right off. He was also the 'guinea pig' when the shearer explained to me how to put on a halter.
Shearer: "So, you want to hold the llama so they don't wiggle much, see how I am holding him down here on the neck and he is squirming?"
Lorenzo: Hmm. If I wiggle just a bit more, this guy will let go, and I can go back to my weeds... Just a biiiit more, little more to the right...
Shearer: "Now if you hold them right under the jaw here, they know who's boss and they have to stand still."
Lorenzo: Gack. Uh. Help? Uncle? Ok, ok, I will stand still. Could you sorta loosen the half nelson, here, I am not going anywhere! Um, help? Please? Sigh...
He was a bit nervous, but did fine, and his hair is almost the chocolate color Rama's is, but a bit thinner. Under all the fluff he had, it was hard to tell!
I wish the shearer had trimmed the hair on their necks, but otherwise, it went really well, and best of all, I don't have to do this again until next year! The shearer said they were thin, so I have been letting them have a bit extra. I think they are enjoying the stuff, and I get satified burps from everyone, so, we go on.