Dee Martens, manager of Kensington Prairie Farm in Aldergrove, described it as a “nip and tuck.”
Daisy, the good-natured 15-year-old llama needed another operation.
She underwent surgery after she was rescued to repair an untreated infection that had left her face badly swollen.
When the swelling came down, the llama’s eyelashes were rubbing against her eye, creating an ulcer.
“When you have rescue animals, you can never anticipate the road to recovery,” Martens told Black Press Media.
“It’s been a long journey.”
Kensington, which raises alpacas and llamas, was called in by the BC SPCA to retrieve Daisy from what Martens described as “deplorable” conditions.
In November, Daisy had an operation to remove what was described as a “tennis ball size” former cyst or hardened abscess from her cheek and above her jaw.
It cost about $4,200, some of it raised through an online GoFundMe campaign that Martens closed down before learning more surgery would be needed.
But, thanks to a generous donor who insisted on contributing after the fundraising was over, Kensington was able to cover the cost of the December surgery on Daisy’s eyelid, Martens revealed.
Daisy has recovered and is back to her old, docile self, willing to let Martens’ one-year-old son lead her like a pet on a leash about her paddock, with adult supervision.
But the llama is a little more hesitant about Martens these days, possibly because she is the human who has applied hot compresses and administered painkillers.
“I have to approach her without a needle in my hand,” Marten laughed.
Daisy is only the latest llama in distress to land at Kensington Prairie Farm.
In April, at the behest of the SPCA, nine llama and five alpacas were rescued from another farm that had purchased them in order to qualify for farm status, but didn’t shear them – something that Martens said is essential.
They had such a weight of wool that they had to be tranquilized for shearing after they arrived at Kensington, Martens recalled.
Revenue from Kensington Prairie Farm admission and tours will still support a children’s charity in Peru called Quechua Benefit, but in the future a portion will also be devoted to the rescue animals, Martens explained.
“We have become such an active rescue support system in the Lower Mainland,” she said.
Catherine Simpson and her husband started Kensington in 2000, in an area of Surrey historically known as Kensington Prairie County.
They began with a dozen alpacas, and the number quickly grew to more than 30 animals before moving to Langley in 2006, expanding Kensington Prairie Farm from five to 45 acres in the process.
In addition to breeding, raising, and showing Huacaya alpacas, Kensington also raises registered Hereford cattle and produces artisan honey.