Sunday, August 18, 2013

The Llamas Are HERE!!

As I started thinking about writing this blog post last night and early this morning, it was with a feeling of pure that feeling has turned to pure terror.  The llama/dog introductions did NOT go well this morning, and I learned that I have a lot of work to do on the fence and barn pen, but hopefully we can come up with a way to keep two of the dogs out of the enclosure.

Going back to the beginning...

After receiving a phone call about two weeks ago that the llamas could be coming SOON, I kicked into high gear for the remainder of the fence building and barn cleaning chores.

It took about 4 days to clean out the barn, which consisted of wetting down the hay in the bottom of the barn, shoveling it out, and then hosing down the remaining organic matter.  I also went through and "disinfected" with a strong solution of PineSol and water.  It is such an improvement!  I only cleaned about 60% of the barn, as the other 40% is still going to be filthy as my in-laws kill chickens this fall, but I plan to clean out the rest after they're done harvesting the last batch.

A dark, but clean barn!

We also finished attaching the fence and hung the gate and cattle panels.  Unfortunately, one of the dogs found a way to get under the fence, so I have more work to do reinforcing the bottom of the fence (with dirt or rocks), and possibly running a strand of electric wire along the bottom.

Finished fence!

I also set up a temporary fence to block off a muddy area that I need to dump dirt on and reseed.

Temporary plastic posts and flag tape.

The other big step was building the pens in the barn.  It took another few days, but we got the cattle panels stapled in place, the new support beam installed, and the wood trim screwed in.  It looks pretty good if I say so myself, but apparently the dogs can get through the manure troughs (which they couldn't before the llamas got here!), so we have more work to do...

Building the pens and gates.
Finished (and filled) pens!

And finally, the llamas got in about 11:30 last night!  Unloading was a little rough, since we had to work our way through the maze of a barn, but they managed to get through unscathed.  They settled in nicely though.

This morning was another story...I went out with Abby first thing in the morning.  The llamas were happily grazing in the pasture.  Abby went wild barking for about a minute, but then quieted down.  We then (a bit hastily I will admit) let the other two dogs out an hour or so later.  The Pyr managed to crawl through the manure trough and get into the barn pen, where I luckily caught him and hauled him out.  The Bull Terrior got under the fence somehow, but for some reason didn't go after the animals.  A few minutes later they were both trying to get through the fence into the pasture, and in all the excitement got into a huge fight.  Everyone is okay, but the fence definitely needs some adjustments!

Enjoying the grass.

Comical Ralph!

Beautiful Kara.  She is huge!

My tack "room".

Hay!  Hopefully the llamas like it...its a bit stemmy but should do the trick.


Anonymous said...

Not sure how close your fence is to the ground, but what we had to do on our dog yard to keep them in was to use tent stakes every so often catching the wire fence and then pounding them in. It was also suggested you could use garden staples to do the same thing. Might be easier than lining the fence with rocks.


Emaly said...

That's a great idea! There are some spots that definitely need dirt first (the fence doesn't touch the ground there), but stakes/staples would be perfect for the spots that already touch. Thanks!