What I've Learned from (and about) Yaks 105

I’m no expert but for almost 50 years now I have lived with, cared for, raised, and loved many different species of animals.  You see, my father was a veterinarian and our family was immersed in the practice. He often brought home injured or orphaned animals for us to help care for.  Every type creature and each individual animal in that group has its own language and personality. Yaks definitely have their own type of communication.


 I have learned some of their preferences due to my interactions.   Let me tell you some of the things Yaks do and don’t like.


Yaks like:

-a green pasture

-a tasty bale of hay

-nice clean water

-a nice brisk breeze

-horse treats

-a snack of grain

-the rattle of a chain on a pasture gate because it means they get to go to the other side of the fence

-any motorized vehicle, even a golf cart (they love to run along the fence line after them)


-a good scratch behind the ears

-chewing their cud

-testing their boundaries

-butting heads

-kicking their feet up

-tossing their heads

-being combed (some of them)

-shady spots

-sunning their bellies


Yaks don’t like:

-hot, humid weather



-weaning time

-being corralled

-getting their hooves trimmed

-an empty hay feeder

-being combed (some of them)




My husband and I have raised our family of 6 children in our favorite place on earth, Tully, NY.  Sixteen years ago we built our home and decided we wanted to raise livestock. He was raised on a dairy farm and my father was a veterinarian, so animals were a part of who we were and we wanted our kids to know the value of a hard days’ work.  Our first venture was with alpacas. We did it all: breeding, vet bills, shows, seminars, trips, visits, and a lot of buying and selling. Of course there were ups and downs with mistakes and successes along the way.

Being on the iyak board is an honor and I promise to do my best.  I am still learning as I go and am awed by the knowledge and dedication of the board members.  As I become more comfortable with my role, I hope to be able to contribute more.