ELDORA Suri Alpacas

Champion Genetics for Generations to Come

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June 01, 2012

By: Leanne Nakashima, Eldora Suri Alpacas

Why an Alpaca Breed Standard?

A Helpful Guideline for Purchasing and Breeding Suri Alpacas

Would you spend $2,500 on a purebred German Shepherd without reading the breed standard? Well, personally, I'd go read the breed standard first. Then I'd ask the breeder how the dog conforms to the standard.

A breed standard is a tool that helps animal buyers understand what they are buying. It is also a guideline for existing breeders. It keeps us all moving in the same direction, and it keeps us honest. Breed standards come into existence by necessitiy, and they can change over time. A Breed standard is certainly not the only tool available for measuring an alpaca's quality. But I think that from a beginner's standpoint, it's the simplest, most straightforward guideline to underdstand and use.

You aren't required to believe a Suri alpaca is a good one just because a seller says it is. For an objective outlook, you can first see how well the alpaca complies to the standard. And then go from there.

If you are considering purchasing a Suri Alpaca, you have the Suri Network Breed Standard as your guideline. It's not a how-to-purchase-yourr-first-alpaca tool. It's a document that describes positive and negative traits and characteristics of a Suri Alpaca. From conformation to fleece type, it's straightforward, easy to understand, and readily available. It pretty much gets right to the point for several major areas of concern.

At Eldora, we are happy to discuss how an individual alpaca conforms to this standard.

Although some items in a breed standard have more importance than others, nothing should be dismissed as ineffectual or a matter of opinion. It's not the end-all either. Non-conformance in one or a minor area doesn't mean an alapca should be tossed from the gene pool. One could say..........perfection is a moving target. And at least we now know which way to go!

At the time of this writing, the breed standard for Suri Alpacas in the United States was created and is maintained by The Suri Network, a National organization that is an affiliate of the Alpaca Owners and Breeders Association.

Eldora provides copies of the standard to all new buyers, and it is also available online at the Suri Network's website. Feel free to email us at RNA1501@MSN.COM or call 541-258-5667 with any questions you may have.