It was cold, cold. In the 20s and then the wind kicked up a bit, too. But Sunday was the day that the 22 Montana rescue llamas were vet checked by the veterinary team from the University of IL vet college.
Nanci came a day early -- and at the crack of dawn, we set up the panels in a workable fashion -- to move animals in and out of the chute -- safely and efficiently.
Dr. Sherrie Clark, Nanci, Shannon, Charlotte, Kate, Nissa, Alicia (vet students) took turns giving shots, drawing blood, listening to hearts and lungs and rumen sounds and body scoring these animals. They also ultrasounded some of the animals to rule in or out possible pregnancies.
We would eventually discover that they are all fairly healthy -- except for the clear near-starvation circumstance that brought them to my farm in the first place.
All 22 of these animals have people waiting to make them a "part of the family." Some will head north to PA. Some will go west to MO. Some will stay in IL. All will be cherished in their new homes, never again to face the cold without shelter and food.
A small miracle has happened. That over 600 llamas were plucked from the edge of disaster and have moved to places of comfort is amazing.
I'm honored to be a part of it.
The photos are: Veterinary team working the ultrasound machine; Julie and Dusk, my alpaca gal; Shannon and Eclipse, the llama cria; Amanda and her llama, Punxsutawney.