We are delighted to share some information on how our baby alpacas are settling in into their new home at Barefoot Barns where they will become therapy animals.
Barefoot Barns have updated us that our beautiful girl Primrose and boys Pluto and Felix are still having a settling in period, just so that they can find their own place in the pecking order amongst other alpacas on the farm. Barefoot Barns have an impressive flock of 17 alpacas and there are more on the way due to a successful breeding programme.
Even though alpacas gifted by MacLennan are not quite ready for work yet, they are fitting in well. Visitors especially like our boy Felix as he is so tiny.
They are undergoing special training to become therapy animals to work with children and adults with disabilities, adults with dementia, mental health difficulties and adults and children in hospices.
Training is a gentle affair, putting head collars on and off so that they get used to being handled and the feel of the collar, then they go onto a lead and they try and “walk” them which can be a mixed outcome at the moment. Once they will be 100% happy and behaving, they will be used for therapy.
Therapy involves service users meeting and greeting the animals, hand feeding and walking them.
So far Barefoot Barns have assisted James’s Place - a provider for adults with learning difficulties and additional needs, they have three sites that have been assisted at. Naomi House and Jacks Place which is a children’s hospice, Barefoot Barns have been privileged to provide assistance there.
The animals have also visited local schools in Wiltshire and have been involved with various charitable activities. We have also had service users visiting Barefoot Barns to spend time with all of the animals. So far Primrose, Pluto and Felix are fast becoming favourites with visitors.
One of MacLennan offices is located on a farm with many animals, including alpacas. When three new alpacas were born, at six months old they were gifted to a charity Barefoot Barns in Firsdown near Salisbury in Wiltshire.
Photos provided by Barefoot Barns