Limerick Animal Welfare shared a picture of the llama in a horse trailer saying it "looks like he is smiling"
A LLAMA in Limerick city has been taken into foster care after hundreds of social media users expressed concern for its wellbeing over the Bank Holiday weekend.
This was after a video circulated on social media of a man in the north side of the city riding on the llama’s back at speed for around a minute before falling off.
The video, which has been viewed more than 75,000 times, comes after Limerick Animal Welfare (Law) shared a video, on April 12, of a llama being ridden by a youth grappling around the animal’s neck, outside a derelict house in a city estate.
The Leader was informed by Law chairperson Marian Fitzgibbon that the llama, a desert animal, has been taken into foster care.
Approximately €450 was raised by a number of people to purchase the llama from the owners.
It is understood that some of the money will be donated to Pieta House and Milford Hospice.
The public was so incensed by the earlier video that more than 500 complaints were made to Law, and Mayorstone gardai received numerous complaints in relation to the llama.
But Ms Fitzgibbon said that the exotic animal is “in very good condition. If you were to get a vet out to look at that llama, A-one condition.
“We have been in touch with that llama since we were first made aware that it was in Limerick. We have been checking on the llama for a couple of weeks. Anytime we checked the llama, it was okay, we couldn’t see any injuries on it. We cannot intervene in an animal welfare case, especially at a weekend when there is no help, or we can go in if the animal is in really bad condition.
“But when we see an animal, with good weight on, good coat, looking relaxed and happy when we go to visit it, well, we have no grounds for seizure. We don’t have those powers anymore.”
Limerick Animal Welfare facilitated the handing over the animal on Monday afternoon, she said.
“When we would go out subsequently, it had good shelter, it had water, it was in a good situation any time we saw it.”
She said that because the llama comes from the camel family, it is not given equine protection that horses, donkeys and ponies have.
Law shared a picture of the llama in a horse trailer, on Facebook stating: “Llama looks like he is smiling as he leaves Limerick for his second chance.”