Ok, I’m gonna start off by saying that llamas are freaking cool, but they’ve been given some bad hype by the spitting lobby, so I’m gonna sort that out. Before I do, here’s a brief history lesson:
Llamas were North American natives until the ice-age sent them lightly bounding down to South America, where they had a pretty sweet life being worshipped by the Incas. That’s not the only thing that’s awesome about llamas. Here are seven more reasons why llamas rule…
- Llamas share a bathroom.
Ok. At first this doesn’t seem like such a cool fact, but they’re animals, you have to remember that. Most animals wander around doing their business anywhere they want to, and they’re all like, ‘Ha. Take that, stupid human. Have fun cleaning that off your shoes.’ But not llamas. No. Llamas are our friends, they care about our footwear. That’s why they produce teensy droppings in a communal dung pile that doesn’t even smell that much. My shoes thank you llamas.
- Llamas have the baby making thing DOWN.
Female llamas are all about the baby making. Instead of having a few practice runs before the main event, lady llamas ovulate after mating. That means that llamas have babies (called Crias) really easily, (Pandas take note). When the llama mom gives birth after 11.5 months, (eek!) it only takes half an hour, which kinda makes the rest of the time worth it. Because they have an attached tongue, (which can’t reach outside the mouth,) instead of licking the goo off their babies, they nuzzle and hum to them; how cute? The Cria is usually up and nursing and being adorable within an hour and a half after being born. An HOUR and a HALF, people. It took me that long to write this article. I bet they’re not even distracted by Hello Giggles or Twitter.
- The spitting thing is a myth… Kinda.
Ok, so it’s not a total myth. Llamas can get a bit feisty. But wouldn’t you if some big ol’ human was all up in your grill? Thought so. But generally llamas are sweet natured creatures, they’re very caring and intelligent and will move the earth, (or at least a few bags) for their human friends. Llama hierarchy is fluid however, which means that when a llama is in a pack, they’ll pick small fights to move up a rung of the social ladder. That means a bit of spitting and kicking and ramming. It’s basically Gladiators with fur.
- Llamas make everything better.
Llamas want us to be happy, so much so that they’re used in therapy because of their calming effects and sensible nature. You know when your therapist told you to get a dog? He pronounced llama wrong. In fact, there are even youth groups such as 4-H and Scouts which have actual llama sessions, so that people can chillax with their llama friends.
- They take care of their own (and everyone else!)
When a baby llama is born, (remember what they’re called? Cria! Yes! Ten points for you!) the females guard them from the male llamas and any predators, just in case anyone mistakes it for a llama-shaped cake or a piñata or something. Llamas can also be used to guard sheep, though if there’s more than one llama, they tend to get a bit chatty and ignore the sheep. Also, if a human rears a llama from a young age and they’re super touchy-feely, lovey-dovey with their llama, the llama will be lovey-dovey back. In a sibling way. You know how you are with your siblings? Yeah. A llama that thinks that you’re a llama will treat you like a llama. Think spitting, kicking and neck wrestling. Ow.
- Llamas have three stomachs.
Much like people, Llamas always have room for cake, but unlike people, a llama’s extra stomachs aren’t an imaginary invention to trick your brain into letting you have dessert. No. Llamas have three stomachs, so they’re awesome at digesting food, and will weed your garden. Seriously. Llamas will eat all sorts of green stuff, and because they have a super effective digestive system, they’re way cheaper to feed than other pets, like dogs and cats. And if you do the unthinkable and annoy a llama to the point of spitting at you, you can tell how annoyed the llama is by what its spit is comprised of. The further back into its three stomachs it goes to source its spit, the more annoyed it is. Though why you’d be checking out the spit rather than apologising and buying the llama some flowers is beyond me…
- They learn things super fast.
Llamas are smart, like Einstein smart. Ok, they’re not exactly Einstein smart, I mean, they’re not coming up with scientific equations anytime soon, (that we know of!) but llamas are not dumb. They can learn things really quickly, in one to five repetitions, which is quicker than me figuring out that I REALLY don’t like melon. So way to go llamas, you are smarter than me. Llamas can be easily trained to carry all of your stuff too, but if you give them one too many shopping bags to carry, they will lie down until you decide to carry your own stuff, because really you should be working off that cake now, shouldn’t you?