DADE CITY, Fla. (WFLA) — Debbie and Narvel Pettis gave up city life for a slower paced life out in the country. They now run Sweet Blossom Alpaca Farm on 15 acres in Dade City. It’s home to more than 60 alpacas and they know each and every one of them by name.
Carmelo is the alpaca that greets strangers and gives kisses. Their alpaca obsession started a few years ago when Debbie read an article about the animals and then started doing some real world research.
“I went to visit a couple of farms and the more I learned about them I fell in love with the alpaca. The animal itself. When I realized we were capable of raising them, we jumped on it.”
Their life hasn’t been the same since. “They’re such unique animals. They all have their own little personality. There’s just something about alpacas,” says Debbie.
The Pettis’ raise, breed and show their alpacas. “It’s similar to like a dog show. You put on a halter and you lead them into the show ring.” They have piles of ribbons as proof of their success.
They also sheer their alpacas for their fiber which can be woven into all kinds of things. Alpacas are part of the camel family and similar to llamas but smaller. Debbie says “they’re very gentle, docile animals. They’re more like a cat in personality. They will come to you when they want attention.”
Sweet Blossom Alpaca Farm is having an open house in just a few weeks. You can check out their alpacas in person Saturday May 21st from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
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