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Our Story ...

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We have had a huge jump in new subscribers so I thought I would retell our story, who we are and what we are about!
A to Z Alpacas is a small family farm located in Southern Alberta, Canada. We own over 200 alpacas and have been building our herd since 1999!

I am Leslie Unruh, my daughter, Kayla and I live on the family farm with my dad, Rod Unruh. Kayla and I moved back home after my mom passed away. Being here wasn't planned but it sure did work out to be a dream life.

A to Z Alpacas is one of Canada's largest commercial alpaca farms. My parents (with a huge push from me) bought a herd of 20... some Canadian registered and some dual registered (Canadian and American), over a decade ago. They were all very average alpacas but when we started we didn't know anything.... except what we were told. We did everything by the book and registered all the cria, hand bred, dna tested and the whole bit... Until we literally ran out of cash and just simply couldn't afford to dna test and register. The hand breeding went out the window as soon as we hit 30 females to breed and we simplified the entire process by allowing a single herdsire to reside with a pen of females for the duration of breeding season. We have 3 or 4 pastures running from May 15- July 15. That way we have shortened up our cria time to just the summer and have way less problems with birthing. Our records are fairly minimal. Commercial alpaca farming is MUCH easier without all the paperwork. Each cria gets assigned a number the day they are born and an ear tag is put in before their first night. We don't bother worrying about anything except producing great fiber, and happy alpacas! Our entire focus became fiber. and the silly things like the color of their eyes became unimportant! I'm glad we made the change to commercial farming. Its been a roller coaster ride for us but somehow we are still going :)

We shear the alpacas each year and send off their fleeces to a local mill. We have 29 natural yarn options! And Kayla and I hand dye the yarn as well. We also have alpaca socks in stock (for now, we often sell out before Christmas no matter how much I stock up!) And I'm also a proud distributor of Alpaca Bedding!!  Crescent Moon Duvet 

Its been over a decade since losing mom, It was the hardest thing I thought I'd ever have to face, but I was wrong. My brother/best friend (32 yr) took his own life while living here with us on the farm. It has been a HUGE blow to all of us. Since losing Anthony, my dad has been ill. He had pains almost immediately and for over 2 years now he has had chronic pains that keep him bed ridden at times and even hospitalized. Its been hard and scary. Right now he is waiting for more tests and we are hoping and praying for answers or better yet.. healing. There were times when I thought I didn't want to be here on the farm anymore, and last Winter I did move away for 4 months. But truth is I love it here, and even though its a place of pain its also comforting at the same time. I know that one day dad will leave this earth as well and being here may not be in the cards for me.  I can't thank you enough for supporting us through this difficult time and helping us get through the impossible.

As we continue to keep on keeping on, I grow more and more grateful each day for all of you. Every Etsy purchase, Facebook Auction Bid, and random email order that I get, keeps it all possible. I can't thank-you enough :) 


 

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