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Camelid Health Conference

2015 Camelid Health Conference
Saturday, February 28, 2015

Cria Care and Biosecurity - A Strategy for Camelid Farms -
Challenges and Best Practices by Dr. Claire Whitehead
Timely, Relevant and Evidence-based Education

Target Audience
This conference is designed for: alpaca and llama owners; Doctors of Veterinary Medicine; and veterinary technicians, who work with or want to learn more about camelids.

This conference provides the opportunity to gain knowledge regarding healthy camelids.

Silent Auction Returns
Back by popular demand is our 2nd Annual Silent Auction. Your support allows us to provide practical up-to-date Camelid learning opportunities! Please consider donating services or supplies for the Camelid health Silent Auction. Bid on items throughout the day during the conference. Contact for more information. You are what makes the Camelid Health Conference possible!

Speaker-Claire Whitehead, BVM&S, MS, FHEA, MRCVS, DAVIM (Large Animal)

 CVM2 - outreach - camelid conference 2015Claire grew up in the United Kingdom, developing a passion for alpacas on the family farm. She completed a Residency in Large Animal Internal Medicine at The Ohio State University in July 2005, working under Dr. David Anderson. Llamas and alpacas formed approximately 95% of her heavy caseload there. She stayed on at Ohio State for another year as a clinical instructor in Camelid Medicine and Reproduction, returning to the Royal Veterinary College in the UK in February 2007 where she established the first referral service catering specifically for Camelids alongside other farm animals. In May 2011, she established a private practice running a camelid-only referral and consultancy practice and runs courses for vets and owners/breeders on Camelid Health and Reproduction. She is currently building a new camelid-focused facility to be opened in the New Year of 2015.

Claire has extensive speaking experience and has presented at conferences all over the United States, in the UK, Ireland, Switzerland, Finland and Holland as well as New Zealand. Her main research interests include Camelid genetics, vitamin D metabolism, neonatology, immunology, and neurological diseases. She has cowritten an owners’ manual on Neonatal Care for Camelids and guest-edited a special edition of the Veterinary Clinics of North America on Alpaca and Llama Health Management (2009). She is the current President of the British Veterinary Camelid Society.

Saturday-Tentative Schedule-subject to change - 7 CE credits

8:00amRegistration and Continental Breakfast

Dr. Anna Firshman, Associate Clinical Professor, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota

8:35amWhy Should the Camelid Industry Care about Biosecurity?
Dr. Claire Whitehead
Biosecurity is an often neglected facet of management on camelid farms. This session will discuss what biosecurity is all about, why it should be a top priority and how standardization of approach across the Industry could help you as an owner/breeder.
9:30amPearson Lecture:  Biosecurity and Disease Prevention on the Farm
Dr. Claire Whitehead
When disease of any sort occurs on your farm, you want to minimize its impact and prevent spread to other animals. We will examine simple measures that can help you protect your animals from disease and reduce the cost of disease to you the owner.
11:00pmKeeping Disease Out!
Dr. Claire Whitehead
When you buy new alpacas, your animals visit shows, or other farms for breeding, you’re potentially exposing your herd to new disease. We’ll identify ways to minimize the potential for disease introduction into your herd from outside.



Controlling Wildlife on the Farm
University of Minnesota Extension

2:00omTop Four Causes of Neonatal Mortality
Dr. Claire Whitehead
There are only so many things that can go wrong with newborn crias… This session considers the “Top 4” and aims at helping you prevent problems in the first place as well as easily identify what’s wrong when they occur – and what can be done!



Bendy Crias and Rickets
Dr. Claire Whitehead
During this session we will describe how to recognize and treat the various types of angular limb deformities in crias with an in-depth discussion of rickets.

4:30pmWrap Up and Silent Auction
5:45pm Reception and Dinner

Conference Faculty Coordinator
Dr. Anna Firshman


Early Registration
ends January 12, 2015

Regular Registration
starts January 13, 2015

Camelid Owners/Veterinary Technicians$99$124
U of MN CVM DVM Students$35$40
Saturday Evening Dinner$35$40


Saturday Evening Dinner
Be certain to join your friends and colleagues for the Saturday evening buffet dinner at the Radisson Hotel Roseville.

Conference Location
The conference will occur on the University of Minnesota, St. Paul Campus at the Pomeroy Student-Alumni Learning Center.

Radisson Hotel Roseville
2540 North Cleveland
Roseville, MN 55113
651-636-4567 or 1-866-444-6835
ask for the “Camelid Conference” rate $86.00 for standard king or double.

Farm Supporters
Consider being a Farm Supporter of the 2015 Camelid Health Conference. For only $50 your farm will receive website recognition, acknowledgement in the conference proceedings, and the option to have a display table at this year's conference. For more information contact Helen Weber at 612-624-3434 or 1-800-380-8636 or via email at

Sponsorship Opportunities
For those that would like to have greater access and visibility to veterinarians, veterinary technicians and llama/alpaca owners, we offer three sponsorship packages. As a sponsor you can strengthen and secure vital business affiliations and exposure and make a lasting impression by supporting programming at the 2015 Camelid Health Conference. Options for sponsorship levels can be found here,



  • Mid-America Alpaca Foundation
  • Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education


  • Upper Midwest Alpacas
  • Wiley-Blackwell
  • Foggy Bottom Alpacas
  • Over the Rainbow Alpaca Ranch


  • University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Lab

Farm Supporters

  • Great Lakes Alpaca Association
  • Spirit Song Alpacas
  • Sunrise River Alpacas 
  • Whistling Pines Ranch

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