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.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Busy Weekends

I love busy weekends. I am still trying to find a reasonably priced rabies vaccine, if anyone has any ideas....I am open to suggestions. Lots going on at the farm. From my last blog, you know that I sold the Clydesdale Trailer and bought a smaller bumper pulled trailer that would be easier for doing animal rescue work. The old trailer was great for hauling a lot of animals at once but it was so big that it made it very difficult to get in and out of tight spots and driveways.

On friday, I was home from school with 2 (of 3) sick kids. While Colin and Buddy started taping and getting the apartment ready to paint I took a quick ride to the trailer place to get the "new" trailer. Wow, expensive to haul animals around. I sold my trailer for a lot less than I should have but I did what was practical for rescues. The only color that they had left in stock was fire engine red, I hated the color as I trudged home with it following the truck but it is starting to grow on me. I think that if we have New York Wildlife Rescue Center painted on the side of it that it will look very "offical" and less like a home for a family of gypsies.

I spent most of the weekend painting the apartment. I am a very driven person, when I make up my mind that something is going to be done....It is going to be done. It took 36 hours of my time but there were 4 of us painting at a couple of different times over the weekend, I hate to think of how long it would have taken me alone . Good job done. In an effort to finish the money pit, I have decided today that I am going to sell my youngest (and one of my favorite) Clydes to a great friend in Mass.. The ending of an era continues. I will be left with my 3 old guys and in a year or two, most of those guys will probably be gone. It upsets me to think about all of the carriages, horses, etc.. and how much I love all of it but if I am going to focus on animal rescue, I need to make sacrifices.

Yesterday was a very busy day for rescues and I never even left the farm. Due to a foreclosure, I had some really great folks bring me 2 potbelly pigs, 2 rabbits, 6 chickens and 4 geese. I chuckled as I watched their mini van pull in the driveway. Knowing that there van would be a lot worse with geese and pigs in it that my wifes was last weekend with two llamas in it. I think that there will be a lot more animals (and people) affected by foreclosures before we get out of the recession that we are stuck in.

I wasnt answering the phone as I was working around the farm but for some reason I did once. A woman that lives in Blenhiem, NY had a female Downy Woodpecker hit her garage door window. She really did everything right. She observed it for a couple of hours at a distance while making sure a cat didnt get it. She brought it in the house when she realized it was messed up pretty good. Quite often if left alone for a couple of hours, they will "get it back together" and fly off. This little thing has a head issue but it has an appetite for suet and has made it for 2 days and 2 nights. A good sign since most usually die of head trauma and stress within the first 12-24 hours.

I asked if she could run it down to me, which they did and I appreciate. I consulted a friend who specializes in birds. I think that it is going to be a time factor case. As long as we keep her eating suet, peanutbutter, and all sorts of treats she stands a 50/50 chance at the moment. Woodpeckers also require a rope, rough log or a vertical perch. I thought that the Barred Owl had a great chance (he died that night of head trama) while he was being held in observation at another rehabbers house that specializes in Birds of Prey. I wish that I could report back a happy ending on that case. I would like to see the woodpecker make it. I know that a good percentage of rescued wildlife dont make it but this one appears tough. I will definately keep everyone updated on its progress.

I have a feeling that it is going to be a long cold week. On a positive, I'll have a week off of school for mid-winter recess once we get through this week. Wes

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Have mini van, will travel

Hi Folks, not much new here in the last couple of weeks. I know that it has been awhile since Ive blogged so I thought that I would catch everyone up on what Ive been doing the last couple of weeks. I had a great llama come in from a nice couple that Ive known for a long time. He needs to be gelded but he is halter broke and very adoptable (eventually). He has the coolest eyes that Ive ever seen on a llama. He has blue highlights on his brown eyes. Very cool llama and I thank his owners for bringing him up and for their continued support for what we do up here.

I got a call the beginning of the week from another woman that has adopted llamas from us in the past. She is getting a divorce and needed me to pick up a couple of llamas. This is where things get interesting. On sat. AM I sold the huge alumin. gooseneck trailer that Ive had for the last 5 years. As I cont. to downsize with my draft horses. I really dont need a 22 foot long trailer to do rescue work. My trailer is really too big to get into peoples driveways. I am going to get a smaller trailer that will be better for rescue work. By 9 am my trailer was going down the driveway and I was trying to figure out how we were going to get two llama back here. As I stood in the driveway looking at my wife's mini van I got the idea.....well you know where this is going....Before she realized what I was doing, I had the back seats removed and off I went to pick up the two llamas that needed to come back to the farm.

Hauling llamas in a car, minivan, truck with a cap, etc. is not a new idea. Ive done it for years but this mini van hadnt been "soiled" yet...I arrived at Julie's house and we caught the llamas, I was feeling confident that I was going to give a good show on Llama Transportation 101....As usual, nothing is ever easy and the llamas had other ideas and didnt hop in the back of the van like I thought that they would. Actually they parked their feet, put their ears back and looked at the mini van as if it were the entrance to hell. I rolled my eyes and said ok, lets do it the hard way.....upon which they started spitting all over the inside of my wifes mini van much to my displeasure. I eventually got them in, the spitting continued as we made our departure and I rolled down the windows to keep from gagging on the smell. Both llamas eventually laid down in a kush and (from all the spitting) drooled all over the van for the next half an hour until we got back to the farm.

Just when you think that you understand llamas, they do something that is completely unexplainable. The same mini van that was now redecorated with green blobs of spit wasnt so bad. When we got back to the farm they refused to get out for almost 20 minutes....Llamas, go figure....The funniest part of the whole trip was watching peoples expressions in cars following us....I really need to get a new trailer...and soon.

Today I went to a meeting of Dog Control Officers, Animal Control Officers, and Animal Rescue folks at the Bethlehem Town hall. It was a great meeting and I thought that they had some great ideas to network and organize ourselves so that it doesnt feel like we are working alone most of the time. We really are surrounded by wildlife and we dont know it most of the time. Friday night, I had a bobcat cross the road in our driveway....that was a first. I am not worried about it, I know that we can peacefully coexist. Till next time, Wes

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.