— The Openherd Team

Kissing Cousins Alpaca Farm

Since 1997

Laura Braun (formerly Coussens)
P.O. Box 155Arlington, WA 98223
(360) 652-8742


~Rough Draft~

Alpaca Breed Standard for the United States of America (ABSUSA)


This standard has been developed for the benefit and perpetuation of the alpaca breed.

The Mission:
The ultimate goal of this standard is to achieve overall improvement of the alpaca by providing a general description of a physically sound and phenotypically correct alpaca.

As an integral part of a responsible breeding program, overall soundness will be evaluated and considered a top priori... Full article >

Tummy Troubles?

Tummy Troubles

By Laura Coussens – Kissin’ Coussens Alpacas

When a human gets an upset stomach, it is usually not a serious event. We can typically just take an antacid and go about our business. However, this is not at all the case for alpacas because an "off" stomach for a ruminant can quickly cause an agonizing, hemorrhaging death. The best “natural medicine” for an alpaca with tummy troubles (ulcers aside...they require special medicine) is a tasty drink that in medical terms is cal... Full article >

Pedigree Productivity

Pedigree Productivity
By Laura Coussens - Kissin’ Coussens Alpacas

When we think about making a large investment of any kind, one thing we do beforehand is gather information to assess possible returns as well as risks. Well, the same should be true with alpacas. One important thing we can do to determine the amount of risk involved when purchasing an alpaca is to research the productivity of its lineage. When selecting prospective alpacas, in addition to price, quality of fleece, conform... Full article >

Alpaca Facts

Alpaca Facts
Compliments of Kissin’ Coussens Alpacas

~Alpacas are members of the camelid family along with llamas and the wild, fawn-colored guanacos and vicunas. Alpacas are believed to have descended from the vicuna and llamas from the guanaco. Alpacas have an amazing history.
~The ancestors of modern camelids evolved in North America beginning 40 million years ago. Some migrated to South America three million years ago. They became extinct in N.A. and only the guanaco and vicuna rem... Full article >

Comprehensive Alpaca Record and Evaluation


Comprehensive Alpaca Record & Evaluation (CARE)

Compiled by Laura Coussens, Kissin' Coussens Alpacas (KCA), 2000

The assistance of a qualified veterinarian is required to safely and accurately complete the evaluation. The CARE is a useful tool for identifying strengths and weaknesses for purposes of buying, selling and breeding alpacas. However, it is not assumed to be exhaustive. Related animals may be evaluated on their own CARE. Animals may also be re-evaluated as they mat... Full article >