So, Are Alpacas Aggressive? Not at all. Alpacas are not dangerous and very safe for humans. However, the extent of danger in Alpacas is unpleasant kicks, jumping away, and spitting. Alpacas are safe and very gentle.
Of course, they will defend themselves from predators. However, humans, are very gentle and docile. Moreover, even if there is an aggressive alpaca, it can be retrained, re-home, or culled. However, in such situations stay away from them if you are not professional.
Do Alpacas kick and bite?
When alpacas interact with humans, it is very uncommon to see them kicking and biting. They have very sensitive hind legs and if they find a threat from the rear, they will kick backwards.
The majority of alpacas don’t usually kick humans. However, there are a few alpacas that can kick instantly. This is more common in pregnant females who deter the acts of other male alpacas.
Due to their soft foot pads, injuries because of kicking are minimal. Alpacas bites are very rare and this is a very uncommon problem. In fact, it can be an attention-seeking behaviour by pet alpacas.
Can Alpacas Be Aggressive?
Yes, alpacas can get aggressive. They are just like other animals. However, this scenario is very rare. Even if they get aggressive, their aggression is not much. Still, it is better not to get caught by aggressive alpacas. Therefore, try to discourage this alpaca behaviour as soon as you see it.
When Do Alpacas Bite?
When alpacas feel threatened, they can get dangerous and bite unintentionally. They can feel threatened in case –
- During Mating
- Protecting young ones
- Sensing danger
- Males Territorial Sparing
- Sick or in Pain
- Trying to flee
- Protecting its food
How Can Alpacas Harm You?
They can harm you in different ways.
Their feet are sharp but the pads are soft. Therefore, they can kick you with great force. In fact, if they lick you in the correct spot, the kick can punch your lung or break your ribs.
Alpacas have sharp lower teeth. These teeth can help them bite with great force. In fact, the bite can be so strong that it can puncture your artery and cause you to bleed to death.
Alpacas can harm you with their spit. Their spit is acidic in nature and it can burn your skin. Moreover, if their spit goes into your eyes, you can get permanently blind.
Fortunately, alpacas aren’t aggressive and they only harm when they feel threatened. Still, it is better to understand their behaviour and take proper action.
Do alpacas spit?
According to Researchgate, Spitting is a negative communication sign in the camel family. They can get possessive over food and may express their possessiveness in the form of spitting. Additionally, they also spit on one another when squabbling within the herd.
Sometimes they spit at each other on purpose, and you can get in between this crossfire by mistake. Therefore, it is important to understand their behaviour and avoid these types of situations.
Can humans get sick from alpacas?
Yes, this is true that humans can get sick from alpacas. According to IUCUC, there is various evidence that alpacas, sheep, camels, goats, and llamas can pass a few diseases to humans.
These diseases include –
Orf Virus (Sore Mouth Infection)
Pathogenic E. coli infections
6 Things You Didn’t Know About Alpacas
Alpacas are very interesting animals. They are easy to handle and if you train them from a young age, they are very well behaved. At present, more people tend to choose alpacas as pets. This is because they are great field pets because of their inquisitive and docile nature.
Here are a few fun facts about them you did not know –
- There are 2 types of alpacas. One is Huacayas and the other one is Suri. Huacayas have a denser and shorter fleece which makes them look like a teddy bear. Talking about Suri, they have curly and long fleeces.
- This animal belongs to the camelid family. This family also includes camels, vicunas, guanacos, and llamas.
- You can never find an alpaca in the wild. Alpacas have been domesticated 6000 years ago. Therefore, they are not seen in the wild.
- Alpacas have a long gestation period of 11.5 months. Females give birth to a baby alpaca called a cria. And this birth process is known as unpacking.
- Female alpacas don’t have a season. In fact, these females can be ready to breed at any time. This is because they are restored in ovulation when the male sings to the female during mating. This process is known as ogling. However, most alpaca breeders do matings from April to September. This is to make sure the young ones are not born in the winter months.
- It is interesting to know that alpacas give birth only between 7 am to 2 pm. These animals are from mountain regions where the temperatures are very low at night. Therefore, they give birth in the morning or early afternoon. This way, the cria can get dry before the temperature drops.
How to Prevent Dangerous Behaviour in Alpacas?
The best way to prevent the dangerous behaviour of alpacas is just to discourage and prevent it. You can do this by different steps that are listed below.
- Do not encourage this behaviour. No matter how cute you find their behaviour, it can become a bigger problem in the future. Your young cria can become an aggressive alpaca.
- It is better to keep your alpaca with other alpacas. This way, they can socialise properly and understand certain basic behaviours towards each other.
- Make sure your alpaca’s area is in such a way that it encourages them to be gentle and safe even if they are good guard animals.
- Aggressive alpacas are very rare. Most of the aggression in alpacas is human-caused.
- Teach your alpaca good manners. In fact, the herd will make your alpaca learn these manners. This is why it is important to keep your alpaca with the herd.
In conclusion, I would say that alpaca aggression is very very rare. Therefore, you cannot see the dangerous side of alpacas. Even if you are witnessing their aggression, it is not that bad.
Rather, it is a learned behaviour from the people around them. This is the most common cause of alpacas aggression in humans.
According to me, alpacas are very gentle and docile. Despite having a herding nature, they are very friendly and love to play.
They can get dangerous if they feel threatened in any way. It can be due to a predator or human interference. In fact, it is said that most humans are the ones who intentionally or unintentionally threaten them.
I hope you enjoyed the article. I will be back with more interesting and informative pieces of writing. Till then stay connected. Thank you.
Berserk llama syndrome
Berserk llama pattern( generally docked to BLS), aberrant geste pattern, or berserk masculine pattern
( as it’s more pronounced in males) is a cerebral condition endured by mortal-raised camelids, particularly llamas and alpacas, that can beget them to sport dangerously aggressive demeanours toward humans.
The term has been overused, still, and is occasionally erroneously usable to llamas with aggressive personalities that aren’t truly” berserk”.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you are visiting an animal sanctuary or encountering one, then it is better to ask first before touching or feeding them. Additionally, do not touch their head, tail, toes, or hindquarters. Strictly, do not hug or grab an alpaca.
If an alpaca is angry, it will hum to express its anger. This can be true in case you make changes in their living arrangements when you move them or separate them from their herd. These creatures also hum when they are curious or happy.
Alpacas are very gentle with humans including specially-abled people and children. Humans who share time with them will tell you that these creatures are very docile and they find peace around them.