I have had so many question pertaining to Gizmo over the short 6 months (6 months today to be exact!) I've been blogging I have decided to try to answer them all here in one post.
You asked and because I think so highly of all you I will try my best to answer honestly and with as little sarcasm as possible...remember I said I would try.
First for some general info...
Gizmo is also Dromedary camel...one hump, as opposed to a Bactrian camel...two humps.
He is also a male...thus the "He" at the beginning of this sentence. I suppose you might actually call him an 'it' as for the fact that he is no longer functioning as a male...I cannot even tell you how happy the female llamas are about that!!!
Now this is completely besides the point but did you know that there are some crazy people in Dubai that actually breed camels and llamas and get what they call a 'Cama'? They were hoping to get an animal that is strong like a camel but sweet like a llama...so far all they've gotten is very ugly ill tempered Camas...guess you should just leave nature alone! Here is a link if you want the whole sorted story!
OK where were we? Oh yeah Gizmo is a he/it. Now before you all get in a huff about me emasculating the big guy...he came to us like that, I was in no way involved with the dirty deed! But from the folks I've talked to (yes I know other camel owners, crazy people) with fully functioning males I am so very glad that is is the way he is. I know a lady that had to rescue her miniature donkey from under her male camel...oh my!!! She no longer owns the camel!
Anyway...Gizmo is citizen of the US, he has never visited his ancestral homeland. Which as I was researching this post is nowhere near Washington state, in fact...
Now to your questions...
Does he sleep standing, lying or what? He actually sleeps kneeling with his legs tucked underneath him.
Can you ride him? CAN is not actually the right word..SHOULD you ride him would be the question. Yes you can, no you shouldn't, and no I haven't...but my kids have. Here is a link to the whole hilarious escapade
Does he act different from other large critters? Not quite sure how to answer that. Let's see if other big critters are stubborn, pushy, smart, and nosey...then yes he is just like other large critters. Now if you asked if he was sweet like the llamas I would have to say no, he is not by any means sweet.
Does he spit? Having not been raised in a herd of camels (he was raised in a herd of cows) he has never learned to spit. Although I am surprised that the llamas haven't taught him the nasty habit but thanksfully they have not!
What is his favorite food? Anything he thinks the other animals have and he doesn't! Besides that probably apples cut into bite size chunks
How old is he? I don't know for sure but I think around 15. The life expectancy of a camel is 40 to 50 years so whichever kid inherits the farm is stuck with the camel too!
Which is his favorite animal on the farm? Well besides himself , I would have to say the pygmy goat. The llamas, although related to camels, seem to think he's a big pain in the arse and give him a wide berth when possible! The Chickens ignore him as does the dog, cat, geese, ducks, and hampsters.
Because I love you all so much I am going to be responding all day to your questions...if you have anymore... and will update this post throughout the day.
Oh and for some useless trivia...camels only have teeth on the bottom in the front of their mouth and top and bottom in the back of their mouth.
Camels burp a lot and never say excuse me,
their breath smells nasty and they refuse breath mints,
they chew with their mouths open, even in the presence of ladies,
and as far as camel manners go...they have none!
Oh and one last things...he pees straight out behind him between his back legs...and doesn't care who is standing back there!
Next batch of ?'s...
How and most importantly why in the world do you have a camel? Well here is the short version. Our church purchased him for their wildly popular live nativity. For insurance purposes they can't own him...something about liability...you think???? Anyhow we have been his legal guardian for years now. For the whole story follow the linky!
How much does he weigh? Ang just for you I put him on the scales this moring and my scale said "STOP THAT!!!" sorry....he has been estimated at about 1200 - 1400 pounds, give or take an ounce or two!
Does he need to be vacinnated? His worming medicine can be given by injection but last time we tried that he ended up with a broken needle in his hind end and the poor soul injection him had a bloody hand...now we give it to him orally.
Does he ever get a cold? He is cranky most of the time so I never know if its a cold or just his personality...seriously I have no clue, if he has I don't know about it.
Do you need a special permit for him? Ohhh I never thought of that, if so I don't have one. Great thanks Warren now I'm going to be paranoid about getting locked up by the camel police!
Does he shed or grow longer hair for the winter? Yes he does shed but it takes all dang summer and he finally stops shedding in November just in time to grow more hair. Now he can grow quite a beard on his nect and we've had to keep it shaved...here is "If you can't kill'em...shave 'em" for the explanation.
Does a large animal vet see him? There is a vet about an hour from us in both directions both of whom will see camels...who would've though?
Is he manageble for the live nativity? He has only escaped once and bruised a couple of finger, stepped on a few toes (literally) other than that yes he is actually quite cooperative. It is getting him in the trailer to go to the nativity that is a nightmare!
No I'm not going to knit him a sweater I'm sure he would love it if I could figure out how to get it on him, lol! Now Warren the plaster mold of his footprint is an interesting thought...and it does not surprise me at all that you though of it!!!