Please also see our other blog at

It is more active than this one. Always check there for updates, too.

Northeast Llama Rescue was started by Wes and Darcy Laraway of Middleburgh, NY.

Several years ago they rescued their first llama out of a tiny horse pen. Since that day, Northeast Llama Rescue has helped dozens of Camelids from several different states.
The primary mission of Northeast Llama Rescue is to educate owners on how to properly care for their animals.

We also offer assistance with a traveling chute to shear, worm, and trim toenails on hard to handle animals. A 'TRUE REPUTABLE BREEDER" should help out the llama down the road that is not being cared for by owners that understand the needs of llamas.

If you know of a llama owner who is no longer able to care for their animals, there is help available. Members of Northeast Llama Rescue will adopt any unwanted animals. Rescue animals will be relocated to farms of members for training and necessary vet work.

If a llama is able to be rehabilitated, he will be available after a careful screening process. All rescues are placed in homes with a contract that says they shall be provided for and can not be sold. In the event a rescue animal becomes unwanted, the llama MUST be returned to Northeast Llama Rescue.

If you share our philosophy and love for the animals, you are more than welcome to join us! There are lots of llamas that need a person to love.

We also rescue farm animals, and are licensed wildlife rehabilitators.

This site is copyrighted by Wes Laraway.

Friday, November 30, 2007

On the road again

I usually travel several thousand miles a year doing rescue work, I dont mind doing it but I hate doing it this time of year. It is nice when I leave the farm. Quite often by the time I get back it is in the middle of a blizzard. I can always make it back to Middleburgh but getting back up on the mountain can often be interesting.

One night I was called in by a Humane Society on a horrible rescue. I left imediately after school, the kids always ask what Im doing when they see my truck and trailer in the teachers parking lot (so I can leave right after school) to get on the road. ... I got there and the Humane Society staff was waiting for me. I assessed the situation, told them how we were going to get the surviving llamas and donkeys on my trailer. It was a bad scene. Dead animals, cold as hell, starting to snow. I walked into the barn over several dead animals, broke the several feet of feces down and got the llamas herded down through the barn and onto the trailer.

The donkeys made me work for my reputation. They were also built up on several feet of feces, I eventually got them out of their shed and they all stood by the rear of the trailer in a blizzard....feet planted. I love our donkeys but when they get in their head that they dont want to do something (even if it is saving their lives) they wont do it.

We couldnt feel our toes and fingers but we had to physically lift all of those donkeys on the trailer. To make matters worse, the older woman that had let her situation deteriorate to that point had recognized the "LLAMAMAN" license plate, the lettering on the side of my trailer and wouldnt leave me alone. My celebrity status (for what I do) had followed me, she had read about me online and wanted to explain how things had gotten that bad.

I never have any ill will against people that starve their animals to death. Most animal "hoarders" love their animals literally to death. They are too proud to tell anyone that they cant afford to feed them, are ashamed and to in love with them to part with them. I eventually got away from her, the cops, the Humane Society volunteers and the animals were loaded. Lyn (a farm volunteer) and I were homeward bound.

I have talked about this rescue before but never the end of the story...It was snowing so hard that we couldnt see, a complete whiteout....even with every light I had turned on we couldnt see 10 feet off the truck. We were white knuckles and heads out of windows 10 mph for a long time...We eventually drove out of it to the point we were all over the road but could see. We made it back to Middleburgh....

Now I had a tough choice, park at my parents house and try to care for the animals on the trailer overnight , until the town plow had gotten the mountain road open or "Hail Mary" and hope for the best....It would be nice to get to the barn so we could get the animals into the barn and settled in where I could work on them in the light....I was going to leave you in suspense but I actually decided to....tell you about Recent Developments.. (You know, my last Blog)

Last night I kept working on the case of the goats and sheep that are being left to fend for themselves while their owners are away living in NYC. I called/emailed a couple of other neighbors and Troopers that I know. Tonight I delievered the show cart to the guy that is taking it to the woman that bought it. I am sure Cyndie will love it, I hope she realizes that the money is being spent to keep what we do here going.

After getting home, I ran to get 15 more bales of hay to get me through tomorrow. I have to go get the 2 gelding llamas tomorrow and will be on the road most of the day. The guys will do pm chores for me but I wanted to make sure I had enough hay and then I will get another 200 bales sun morning before the storm hits. The two brothers that I buy hay from are great, I buy every bale they make and they let me pick it up as I need it. I look forward to seeing what the 2 llamas look like tomorrow....I always love the first moment that my eyes hits a new rescues' eyes...It is an amazing moment....Im sure I will have a good blog tomorrow night. The worst part of "being on the road" doing rescues is boredom....and the cost of fuel at $3.82 a gallon. Colin and Jacob rode with me tonight to deliever the cart. It is nice to have someone to talk to although I also like the "alone time" with a trailer full of screwed up , starving animals... Jules is coming out tomorrow to ride shotgun....I need to hit the hay. It is going to be a long day tomorrow, Wes

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Northeast Llama Rescue by Wes Laraway

The Northeast Llama Rescue was started by Wes and Darcy Laraway several years ago after they rescued their first llama out of a tiny horse pen. Since that day, the Northeast Llama Rescue has helped dozens of animals in 5 states. The primary mission of Northeast Llama Rescue is to educate owners on how to care for their animals properly. We also offer assistance with a traveling chute to shear, worm and trim toenails on hard to handle animals. If owners get "tired" of the daily maintenance of their herds, members of the Northeast Llama Rescue will adopt or buy, if possible, any unwanted animals. Rescue animals go to the farms or members of the organization.

The Northeast Llama Rescue does not wish to compete with other rescue organizations, although any llama or alpaca is welcome. We need to cooperate to help ALL camelids, not just registered or "nice-looking" ones. Everyone has the right to breed and sell llamas, but a true reputable breeder will "help out" the llama down the road that is not being cared for, regardless of its age, sex or conformation.

Our last rescue came from Central New York. A farm had purchased 9 animals from a Midwest auction. Four of the animals had died from natural causes....starvation? The owner had health problems and no longer wanted the animals. After several other concerned people failed to negotiate their sale, I eventually called and within five minutes we had agreed on a price and the deal was done. The next night, Wes Laraway, Kim Scheurerman and P.J. Wagner went to pick up the animals. The owner informed us that the llamas were wild and could not be handled. Within five minutes all were calmly caught, on lead ropes and in the trailer, with us using a wand and some TEAM Training techniques. The owner thought I was the "llama whisperer" because I got those llamas to do things in five minutes that she couldn't do in a year. She unfortunately knew nothing about handling llamas.

Three hours later, we were back into quarantine at Red Maple Farm starting "damage control". The animals were immediately wormed, fed fresh hay and grain, and watered. All were body scored under three by sight and by feeling through their wool. This hands-on inspection revealed barbed wire that needed to be cut out of the fiber. We decided NOT to shear because it was too late in the year and they were too thin.

Another concern was an ingrown halter. One of the best ways to remove ingrown halters is to undo the buckle(s) and cut the nose band with sharp toenail clippers on each side of the nose. Then gradually, over time, the remaining pieces will fall out. With application of an antibiotic cream, any wounds from the ingrown halter will heal quickly. In this particular case, the halter came out of the nose and was added to the "wall of shame" in our barn (along with the barbed wire and ear tags still on them from the auction they were purchased from). The blood stream stopped within fifteen minutes and now, after a month, we can tell that scarring will be minimal. Please tell everyone you know that owns camelids, NEVER leave a halter on a llama! Even in a week, with wet conditions, a halter can embed itself in a llama's nose.

My biggest concern was the 10 month old female that was exposed to her father. If bred, we decided to abort the unborn cria for the safety and well-being of the young female. None of these five animals were over the age of three years. All of them, over the following months, would need intense care and proper nutrition. The animals were all updated on health requirements and gelded. All of these animals would need training before they could go up for adoption.

New problems continuously arose. Two weeks after they arrived, one of the females surprised us with a weak, constipated fourteen pound male cria. Within hours I knew it wasn't "normal" so mom and baby were moved to a quarantine pen in the barn. The decision was made to supplement the cria with goat colostrum and give him an enema. Although the cria was walking, he continued to strain to relieve himself. Around the clock surveillance did not reveal any nursing or defecation. At two days old, I found very small maggots between the cria's toes and by his umbilical cord. After consulting my vet again, the cria got a bath and dried out in the heated office before going back to mom in the barn. My vet explained that crias born on rainy days must be completely dry or flies will lay eggs in moist areas of umbilical fluid. I've never heard of this problem before but I know now to check my newborn crias for maggots every day. After five days of constant care, we lost "Trooper"....I guess it was not meant to be, but we tried.

The rest of the animals are doing well today. Concerned individuals found them, bought them and will protect them. Today is actually a special day, because the vet did fecals on them and all five of them are parasite free and can join our llama herd. After training and further rehabilitation, by Spring 2001 this group of animals will be available for adoption to carefully approved homes. All animals sold or placed by Northeast Llama Rescue will be adopted with a legal contract. The contract states that if the llama ever becomes unwanted or is not cared for properly, the animal will return to Red Maple Farm for a full refund. I used to think I could save every unwanted llama in the world...I know that I can't . It is too great an undertaking for one farm to rescue all the unwanted camelids out there. For this reason, several other farms have joined in the effort with Red Maple Farm to pool resources and save neglected and unwanted camelids.

Any farm that shares our philosophy that every llama deserves a life with proper care is welcome to join us. We are people who genuinely love all llamas and want to make a difference one llama at a time. Eventually we will print an educational brochure to hand out at events with member farms listed. Don't just tell people that you love your llamas; show people by making a difference and actually save one. Always quarantine new animals for at least one month while getting wormings, vaccines and nutritional needs in order. Always do a fecal exam and consult your vet about when new animals should go out with the herd. Geld all males and most of all BE PATIENT. Llamas are very forgiving animals and will learn to love and trust again with gentle care and training.