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.

Thursday, November 8, 2007


Thinking. I've been doing a lot of that the last day or two. I asked Jules, NELR Project Manager if we could get a disclaimer. Something that would say that my moods, opinions, and attitudes are solely my responsibility. I am not going to participate in sharing my private thoughts and feelings if other people are not going to respect them for just that.....

I have agreed to do these blog entries to let people know what I actually do. To insult, give people gossip or ammo to use against me is counter productive and I will not waste my time if that happens with those negative people. I am hoping that if people that love animals (as much as I do) get to learn about our facility, you may want to help my cause.

Very few facilities have what I have built up over the last 20 years...When you actually "travel" through my adventures with me I hope that you validate what Ive dedicated my life to. I have never been good at asking for help or money, I don't want to start now. Jules has been trying to get me to step up to the next plateau for 2 years. I have finally realized that I am at my limits as one man. Without help, I can no longer continue to help the animals that I am being asked to, most don't have a chance without me.

I get too many emails and phone calls to afford to respond to every rescue on my teachers salary. That bothers me, I can't sleep at night. My "wait list" is growing daily with everything from a coatamundi to antelope. You might be thinking...there are other facilities. You are wrong, not for the animals that I deal with in the Northeast.

My credentials are second to few. I have more degrees, licenses, certifications, inspections and references than anyone probably in the Northeast whose only purpose is to rescue animals. I have almost bankrupted my family several times, but I have a hard time asking for help or money. Especially from people that I dont know. I wasn't brought up like that. But the animals can't speak for themselves so that's why we are here today.

My first goal is to always have a paid vet bill (which it never is). My second goal is to raise about $100, 000 in donations to put in a heated facilities for birds, reptiles, primates and exotics that cant handle winter weather or may be sick. I have been online. I know that there are other rescue groups and rescue facilities in the USA but I have found none that do what I do. There is a big void in the cold Northeast for Exotic rescue.

I can't explain it all in this short Blog but I have seen things that most people couldn't imagine. I've climbed over piles of dead animals to save the ones that were hiding. I have spent hours removing barbed wire, halters and auction ear tags out of animals. I have acted when others have said "oh that is terrible" and changed the news channel....

I am here and I make a difference. I really am not a hero. People ask me all the time how I got into this....I always say I didn't plan on it, it just kind of happened. As I became one of the leading authorities (nationwide) on exotic animal rescue people often ask me how many animals I have....I say I dont know, it depends on the day and they won't stand still so I can count them. Besides we are too busy taking care of them to take the time to do a head count. I have never made a dime but the feeling that I get when I take the frightened, near death it, nurse it back to health, gain its trust, get it trained and eventually find it the perfect home or release it back into the wild is PRICELESS.

One way or another, I will continue doing what I do but that is not good enough. I want to establish a not for profit rescue facility here at my 165 acre farm that will outlive me and be continued when Im gone and no one else will answer the call. I am only 39 years old and I know that this will take awhile to do.

Tonight as I pulled in the driveway from work at my high school. I forgot everything and dropped everything to watch Sierra get a ride back home with her owner Steve. She is the pregnant mare that I talked about in my last blog. She is going home to be pregnant and we can worry about driving her next summer after her foal is well established. Colin and a couple of city guys (that have a weekend place further up the hill ) stopped down for dinner. What a great bunch of friends I have. ...

My wife is so awesome, she went to a teacher conference in Texas for a week and she left me homemade frozen dinners that all I have to do is pop it in the oven and serve to whoever might be here and be hungry. After dinner, we were talking about my Blog and what I do. I said that I didn't want to write anything that people didn't like. They said to be honest, be me and write about the good and the bad in only the style that I can. That is what I am going to do.

After over 20 years of rescue work, I am going to share my triumphs and my tragedies, the good things and the bad things. Dont judge me, just experience it as I do. Some nights we will laugh, some nights we will cry. To know me, you really need to get to know my animals (this could take awhile). Starting this weekend. I am going to start introducing you to EVERY animal on this farm. I will tell you their story so you can experience what I experience and know. I will post photos of every new animal upon their arrival and if/when the day comes and they graduate to a new will see that to.....

As a NYS licensed Nusiance Wildlife Control Officer, I will take you on calls with me. I will show you a whole lot of life and we will trudge through the battles and death. I will give you my pledge tonight. I will never do wrong by the animals. I hope that you enjoy getting to know me, my animals, my farm and what thousands of animals experience on a daily basis. We are open to the public free of charge (donations accepted), if you are in my neighborhood stop by.

Everyone that reads my blogs past, present and future that wants to help the cause....tell all of the people in your address book about me and what I do....don't forget to give them the blog address and tell them to bookmark it so they can check in often. I also want to encourage everyone to feel free to send me comments. I need the verbal support somedays! I will not post any of your comments without your permission. Sorry I was kind of serious tonight, I want to make sure that we are on the same page. 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.