Thursday, June 28, 2012

Update on our Premature Alpaca Baby, Moorea

Here's an update on our little girl who was born on Monday, June 25th at 320 days gestation. She's doing great!! For the first 36 hours, I syringe fed her one ounce of colostrum every hour. She wasn't sucking on her own, so the syringe was needed. I gave her a baby enema, with warm soapy water to get her to pass her meconium (the first poop). She was still weak, floppy & struggled to stand. I gave her 4ccs of alpaca nutri-drench in a child's oral dosing syringe (1 cc= 1ml). Since she can't regulate her own body temperature yet, I found myself moving her from the shade to the sun as needed. It's summer here in Southern California; but it dips to the 50's at night, so I need to make sure Moorea stays warm. I put her in a child's sweatshirt at bedtime & wrapped her in a warm blanket. I found that the "furry' blankets for kids retain the heat better than towels. Also in the middle of the night when it's coldest, I filled two plastic milk jugs with warm water & put them on both sides of her with the blanket draped across the top.
Finally, success! Moorea is nursing on her own! I still need to watch her temperature & monitor weight gain. I also need to remind her to eat every couple hours. I find a small squirt of warm colostrum (from an unused clean enema bottle) is just enough to get her up & nursing on her own. The next few days is still critical, but I'm very optimistic (& sleep deprived) at this point!


  1. I didn't know they had such a long gestation period!

  2. Hi Erin,
    That's great that Moorea is coming along OK. Continued Best wishes!!