Saturday, December 17, 2011

Goodbye, Dolly!

2011 brought the passing of Dolly the Llama who lived at the Duluth zoo. It was a bittersweet passing for my family.

Dolly the Llama, R.I.P.

Dolly was undeniably cute. As a member of the petting zoo, her job was to be an animal ambassador. Susan and the boys used to visit her every year at the zoo on their Up North trip.

Then one year, Susan was telling Dolly the llama how cute she was...and Dolly gave her that llama stare...and lobbed spit-boulder right in Susan's face.

The story goes that Susan shrieked, taught the boys some new words and spent 15 minutes in the zoo bathroom washing it off. She reports that llama spit is very sticky and very stinky. 

Wikipedia explains about llama behavior:

"Llamas are very social herd animals, however, and do sometimes spit at each other as a way of disciplining lower-ranked llamas in the herd."

Susan did not appreciate Dolly believing that she was a lower-ranking llama. Also,

"One may determine how agitated the llama is by the materials in the spit. The more irritated the llama is, the further back into each of the three stomach compartments it will try to draw materials from for its spit."

Dolly must have been very annoyed with Susan.

In the following years, they always viewed Dolly from a distance and laughed.

Dolly was almost as funny as that Duluthian seagull that crapped right on Susan's head.


  1. How can you not love an animal that's so entertaining? It's just a pity that Susan had to be the brunt of the joke!

  2. Susan should have known better than to stare at that poor llama and say stupid things about its cuteness. She's lucky they don't have rhinos in the petting zoo.

  3. I've gotten a face-full of llama spit before, so I know exactly how that's like the full-force smell of putrid garbage, foot odor, and old vegitables right up your nose.