Now Registering!

Camelid Behavior as an Indicator in Handling, Training, and Illness

An Online Workshop.

Details Here



Alpaca Talk

Understanding Alpaca Behavior

ONLY $15

Details Here

Camelid Books For Holiday Gifts

I have selected a number of camelid books and other interesting books from They are categorized and listed in The Gentle Spirit Store. I hope you enjoy browsing these selections and purchasing those you like through my store.

Enter The Gentle Spirit Store Here

Gentle Adjustable Halter for Alpacas and Llamas

Gentle Adjustable Halter for llamas and alpacas

Llama Talk

Understanding Llama Behavior as a Foundation for Training and Herd Management

Llama Talk Understanding Llama Behavior as a Foundation for Traininng and Herd Management.



If you are considering hosting a clinic, please contact me. All the details for hosting or attending a clinic or presentation are found here on my website. 

CONSULTATIONS  By Email and Phone

Offering Solutions To Your Alpaca and Llama Behavior, Training and Herd Management Problems

I receive numerous questions by phone and email each week. Many consultation requests require a good bit of initial time to mutually identify and review behaviors, background and put together a "lesson plan." While I am most happy to do this, it has become necessary for me to ask for donations for email and telephone consultations. Upon satisfactory completion of the consultation please consider sending a donation that is fair for all concerned.

Here's the details about my consultations


The Gentle Spirit Newsletter

November 20, 2010

Subscribe to The Gentle Spirit Newsletter here


Leptospirosis Disease

A national alert has been issued cautioning that the Leptospirosis Disease is on the rise. Historically, Leptospirosis has been seen as most prevalent in outdoor and sport dogs. However, it is currently being seen outside of that grouping. Any animal or person can contract the disease by coming in contact with the urine of wildlife including rats, groundhogs and squirrels. The bacteria needs a wet environment. There has been a reported spike in cases in the Midwest, including Detroit and Kansas City as well as in Maryland. For more specific information in your area, please contact your veterinarian.


Now Registering for November 30th Workshop 

Limited to 15 participants

The Gentle Spirit Behavior & Training online workshops are a great success. Understanding the behavioral cues of our alpacas and llamas is a most important skill to successful herd management and training. It is like attending a presentation at a conference without the travel and expense. Here are a few of the many comments:

Congratulations on putting together this wonderful training. Being online and on the phone was fantastic. You covered so much really important information - can't wait for the next one. Laurie Bakay

Cathy, I truly enjoyed your online training last night. It was so easy to do. and so VERY informative for a newbie like me. I look forward to many more of your great webinars. GREAT IDEA! Paula Covault

I really enjoyed it. I am anxious for more classes and my friends in Oregon. I will have to let them know too. I was so impressed that from New York to CA, to Texas and some parts in between were there. Just great. Thanks so much! Hope to meet you in person one day. Lisa Peterson

Now registering for Camelid Behavior As An Indicator In Handling, Training and Illness . November 30th. Limited to 15 participants. Only $15.

More information and registration on my web site here.


By Cathy Spalding

Understanding llama and alpaca behavior can be an interesting puzzle. Certain behaviors or a vast combination of behaviors pose a picture. Sometimes the picture is perfectly clear. At other times, it is blurry and requires further understanding of the presenting possibilities. A good understanding of camelid behavior and the ability to use that knowledge to problem solve are key in resolving difficult behavioral issues.

The llama and alpaca worlds have run fast and furious. Sales have been brisk. Many animals have been bought and sold. Sometimes, the same animal may be bought and sold several times. Females travel for outside breeding. When confirmed pregnant, they travel back. Then they may be sold. Yearlings come and go. Many, many herds have been in a state of constant flux for an extended time.

This frequent coming and going causes a continual shift in the structure of a herd. Each time a member leaves, there is a space to fill - a job opening. If the female who was just sent out for breeding happened to hold one of the guard positions, that position must be immediately filled by another member of the herd. When she returns, things again need to be re-worked. If she was a mother or best friend, stress occurs in those left behind. If she was the matriarch, a battle begins to fill that space. When she returns, a battle may begin to change it all back again. Visiting females have often been boarded within the resident herd instead of in a separate area. They will try to integrate into this new herd, establish a position and settle in. Shortly, without truly understanding that this would happen, they again return to their previous herd. Both herds will necessarily shift again - one to fill a vacancy and the other to re-establish the herd order.

Article Continued Here


I am offering my multimedia, behavioral textbook, ALPACA TALK, on CD-ROM at $15 for the holiday season - until December 20, 2010. ALPACA TALK is highly acclaimed as one of the best references on alpaca behavior available to date. ALPACA TALK has received praise from a number of veterinarians including Dr. Murray Fowler. I continually receive emails from alpaca owners saying that something they reviewed in ALPACA TALK actually alerted them to a subtle situation that ultimately saved the life of their alpaca.

For detailed information and to order ALPACA TALK during this holiday special please visit my web site here.

Orders will be shipped immediately.


If you are considering hosting a hands-on clinic at your farm or ranch in 2011, please contact me as soon as possible.

Click here for all the details about my clinics and presentations.


I have selected a number of camelid related and other interesting books from They are listed The Gentle Spirit Store.  The listings are divided into appropriate categories. I've included four of my favorites below.

Please browse selections in The Gentle Spirit Store :

Polar Dream by Helen Thayer - Helen is the first woman to solo journey to the North Pole with her dog, Charlie. It is an amazing journey. Helen also owns alpacas and I was honored to have her attend one of my clinics.

Modoc: The True Story of the Greatest Elephant That Ever Lived by Ralph Helfer -- This is a terrific true account of the life of an extraordinary elephant. You will never again look at elephants in the same way.

Caring for Llamas and Alpacas: A Health & Management Guide by Claire Hoffman and Ingrid Asmus -- This spiral bound book is an excellent reference for every owner. Text with illustrations covers a myriad of topics from knots to injections to eye injuries to reproduction to trouble shooting... and more.

Mrs. Lincoln: A Life by Catherine Clinton -- A very well documented and interesting look behind the scenes from the early days of courtship, enduring the white house years to her self-imposed exile in Europe.

Go to The Gentle Spirit Store

Please feel free to forward my newsletter to others who may be interested.

Thank you and I wish you all the very best and Happy Holidays!