By Charles Wade-Palmer
A miracle alpaca who lives in her owner’s home has become world famous for being so tiny.
Adorable Cody has lived indoors since her troubled birth when she weighed just 6 ½ lbs and was fighting for her life.
Amber Isaac, 48, who runs an alpaca ranch feared the worst when Cody was born but thanks to her pampered lifestyle she has survived as more dog than alpaca.
Amber said: “Cody lives almost exclusively indoors. She does like going outside to play and to the barn to visit the others, but gets overwhelmed fairly quickly.
“She has her own blanket in the living room and a second one upstairs in the bedroom.
“While she is still smaller than most alpacas her age, Cody has worked very hard to grow. She is currently the size of a large dog.”
Amber took Cody into her own home and has nurtured her through health problem after health problem, now the alpaca has defied the odds to become possibly the smallest of her species.
The pair live with in Castle Rock, Colorado, USA where she has run Silken Suri Alpaca Ranch since 2007.
Amber said: “Cody is an extraordinary alpaca. She has had ongoing health issues, so she has lived inside the house since birth. I am blown away by how intelligent she is.
“At birth Cody was one of the smallest surviving alpacas that I had heard of. There have been a small handful of others around the country, most of whom are surviving twins, but alpacas her size are extremely rare.
“She has completely adapted to her unusual situation and understands so much of what I say to her. She is also very successful at communicating her needs to me as well.
“I do consider her a pet. She acts much more like a domestic cat than a barnyard animal. I do try to give her barn time every day.”
Cody has become little short of a superstar with thousands of Instagram followers keeping track of her progress.
Amber said: “Cody has had ongoing medical issues, including a twice-broken leg at different times, cataract surgery, severe anaemia, dropping white blood cell and low protein levels.
“She has had many special requirements to go with each of her afflictions. The good news is that she’s currently in excellent health.
“She does still take daily bottles spiked with extra vitamins, minerals and digestive yeast.
“Most days she gets overwhelmed with the other alpacas and wants to come back inside within an hour or two.”
A former Broadway dresser, Amber swapped working in theatrical wardrobe in New York City ten years ago for life as an alpaca business owner.
She was so inspired by Cody’s battle and unique lifestyle that she took pen to paper and wrote a children’s book about her.
In the book titled ‘Cody, The Teeny Tiny Alpaca’, Amber tries to get across a strong message to kids that it is okay to be unique and differences should be celebrated.
Amber said: “As prey animals, alpacas have a very strong flight instinct and even though Cody has been desensitised to people, new faces still make her anxious.
“Because of her growing celebrity status, many people want to pet Cody which she tried to be patient with at first but it still made her very uncomfortable.
“Now she’s happy to sniff people as an introduction but she prefers that they not try to pet her.
“Cody has a very precise personality. Perhaps because her sight continues to be compromised, she is very careful about where she places her feet when she walks.
“She is shy around everyone else and wants them to respect her personal space. She loves treats and apples.
“She likes having her own spot on her own blanket in the living room. She is very affectionate with me and loves her vet.”