Alpaca Breed Standard

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Standard of points

Update October 2009
Frontal, Chops, Head, Eyes, Ears 20
of which
Frontal and Chops: The hair constituting the frontal should originate from the shoulders and be brushed so as to evenly cover the face with no gaps at the side of the head, meeting hair from the ‘chops&rsquuo; so as to fall in a manner that produces a ‘curtain’ effect at the front of the cavy. Chops to be strong, with hair of one length and no gaps.15
Frontal to be of good length, in keeping with the cavy's age.
Head, Eye & Ear Head to be short & broad, Muzzle of good width & rounded at the nostrils.
Eyes to be large, bright and bold and set with good width between.
Ears to be large and drooping, and set with good width between. 5
Coat Appearance 30
Shoulders, Sides, Sweep Coat should be springy in appearance & show rexoid characteristics
Shoulders and Sides should continue evenly from the frontal and chops of the cavy, with good length in keeping with the cavy’s age
Sweep should cover the hindquarters, with good length in keeping with age.
There should be no evidence of a parting in sweep hair.
No breaks in coat, thin areas near the body or uneven length should be evident, so as to continue the curtain effect that is desired.
Coat Feel 30
of which Coat Texture to be soft and springy to handle & free flowing over the whole body. 15
Coat Density to be full and dense in all areas when assessed nearer the body where the undercoat supports the top coat. 15
Belly to be curly, woolly and dense.
Presentation To be clean, free of grease and unmatted, with no resistance to a comb. 10
Body To have short, cobby body; thick-set, with good width across shoulders. 10
To be fit and of good substance, with plenty of firm flesh.
To have good size appropriate to age.

Specific requirements

The cavy must be shown with a central parting, on a board of appropriate size

These should be large enough to give an outline of coat shape, maximum 20” x 20&rdquol, and covered in natural-coloured hessian.

Guidance notes

The Alpaca is a long-coated cavy with two rosettes on the rump, being the rexoid equivalent of the Peruvian.

The placement of these rosettes is important in producing density in the sweep.

The overall appearance, looking down onto the top of the cavy, should be of an oval shape but as near round as possible.

With coat of even length coming from a central parting along the spine, the hair should fall forwards to cover the head and backwards over the rear to form the sweep.

Along with the shoulders and sides, this should create a continuous ‘curtain’ of hair around the body. However, the coat grows in ‘layers’, this being more evident in U/5s.

The undercoat of the Alpaca stops at 6 to 7’, so when the top coat reaches 3 to 4” longer than this there starts to be an impression of thinness, as increasing amounts of show board are seen beneath the coat of the cavy. This does not constitute lack of density, which should be felt near to the cavy’s body.

When the coat length increases towards 18” it is spread so far out that individual hairs are apparent and an impression of wispiness is given. This is unavoidable even with a very densely coated cavy.

Density should also be apparent from the appearance of the coat, with no breaks or thin areas of coat evident.

Coat length should be appropriate to the age of the cavy, a guideline being circa 1 inch per month of age.

In young cavies the sweep may appear to be slightly longer than the sides, but an even length all round is sought in intermediate and adult stock.

Alpacas may be shown in any colour or mixture of colours.

Specific disqualifications

Specific faults

Wash 2: Designed by Simon Neesam for the British Cavy Council © 2020