Camels are very sensitive creatures, yet can seem aloof in their demeanour, given this they are susceptible to experience trauma easily, especially if you don’t know how a camel thinks and how to handle them in a way that they understand, in this episode we’re talking all about the Signs of a Traumatised Camel and how you can manage them & help them recover.
I know this might sound strange, but I’ve had the pleasure of dealing with camel’s that have experienced trauma, camel’s that are so scared that you can see that scareness overcoming them like their life depends on it, and to The Camel, their life DOES depend on it! This is how they survive, camels are survival animals, biologically speaking AND psychologically speaking. If a camel feels something will threaten their very survival, they will choose fight, flight or fright.
Camel Trauma is a colourful subject, because there is not ONE answer to help them recover, there are many things that you can do to help, but it all depends on ‘that’ particular camel and to what extent they have experienced the trauma.
In all honesty it is heartbreaking to meet a camel that has experienced trauma, I really gotta hold back the emotions and ‘leader-up’ for the sake of the traumatised Camel I’m dealing with, it definitely takes a certain fortitude to deal with camels that have experienced trauma. Though, what it doesn’t take is Ego driven force and dominance trying to ‘make’ the camel do something.
One of the biggest factors I see camels experiencing trauma is the lack of knowledge that the handler / trainer / owner has about camel psychology – how a camel thinks – which leads to other animal training & handling methods being used on camels which can leave the camel in, well… An identity crisis (yes, camels get this)!
Just a Few Signs of a Traumatised Camel (but not limited to):
- Seems extremely fearful of humans, rather than curious, even after some training, handling, bonding:
- Erratic behaviour where the camel seems to “switch” behaviours quickly
- Makes a lot of noises when humans are handling them like growling
- Seems uninterested and lacks curiosity with humans or other animals
- The opposite: extremely timid camel that will do anything to please
- Aggressive / defensive behaviours (biting being the main one)
- Has a strong dislike for a certain gender
- Sometimes it’s just a ‘knowing’ or a gut feeling
As with anything, there are always exceptions, again, not a Black & White topic!
A traumatised camel is an unsafe camel, because you never know when they will tigger. It’s your job (as the owner/handler/carer) to put as many positive experiences (that the camel can relate to) with humans in front of them, moving forward.
Time, effort, commitment & an understanding of camel psychology are the biggest factor for managing & helping traumatised camels recover – all camels can recover!
If you suspect that you have a camel that has experienced trauma OR you want to help rehabilitate camel’s that have experienced trauma (like rescue sanctuaries etc) you can access a lesson I did recently in the Cameleer Academy on Traumatised Camels: Management & Recover, this will help you understand camel psychology better and give you steps to start helping a camel recover from trauma (as well as how to identify trauma in camels, again, not black and white).
To access this lesson in the Cameleer Academy on Traumatised Camels: Management & Recover CLICK HERE to join & start watching (we don’t have any lock ins or long term commitments for members, so you can leave The Academy at any time, nothin’ to loose!).
To become a member of the Cameleer Academy JOIN HERE and we’ll see you in The Academy!
Happy Camel Connecting!