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Q: What Are Llamas Like? A: Everything

Here is an incredible article about llama ownership at the New York Times. Within it, llamas are compared to snack foods:

Most people start with two or three, since llamas are sociable and don’t like to live alone. But as Katrina Capasso, a llama owner in Ballston Spa, N.Y., discovered, “They’re like potato chips.” It’s hard to stop at just a few.

Also to novelty decor:

“I refer to them as our walking lawn ornaments,” he said fondly.

To that video of the mariachi band serenading a dolphin:

“Llamas will steal your heart.”

To festival-goers:

Llamas are strictly outdoor animals, and males must be kept separate from females, otherwise they will mate nonstop.

To your very best pal:

“They’re just so calming and enjoyable to be around,” she said. “You can tell them all your secrets and your problems. They know all my likes and dislikes, when I’m mad at my husband and when I’m happy with my husband. They don’t tell anyone, they just listen.”

To your wild-card girl friend:

Unless they feel threatened, they rarely spit at people… “They’re standoffish at first, and then they’re in your face.”

To me at every Alt-J show I’ve ever been to, because what are those lyrics, really:

“People come up to me and ask, ‘Why are the llamas humming?’ ” he said. “And I’ll say, ‘Because they don’t know the words.’

I’ll stop in a second, but one more little delight:

When a male is interested in a female, or mating, he makes a noise that sounds a bit like gargling. (Llama people call this an orgle.)

And a great correction:

Correction: July 8, 2013. Because of an editing error, an earlier version of this article referred incorrectly to alpacas. They are bred for their wool; they are not beasts of burden.

“I’ll never be your beast of burden. My back is broad, but it’s a-hurtin,” said alpacas worldwide.


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