Countywide

Police catch loose llama near Fairfax County Parkway, leading to reunion with owner

A stray llama who was caught running on Fairfax County Parkway in the Fairfax Station area over the weekend has been reunited with her owner, the county’s animal shelter says.

Kolby, a 20-year-old female llama, was caught by Fairfax County Animal Protection Police near Popes Head Road Sunday evening (Dec. 18) after escaping her enclosure.

A combination of overhead and body camera footage shared by the Fairfax County Police Department shows officers chasing the animal in a wooded area before managing to corral her.

“A passerby saw a llama out for a jog on the Fairfax County Pkwy near Popes Head Road,” the department said. “After eluding our officers, the llama was found in a backyard and safely taken secured by APP.”

Police transported the animal to the Fairfax County Animal Shelter (4500 West Ox Road), where she got a temporary home in the facility’s barn.

“The llama was assessed by shelter staff and the shelter veterinarian and found to be in stable condition,” shelter director Reasa Currier told FFXnow. “The shelter staff provided her bedding, food, and water. Shelter staff immediately began searching for her family.”

To help locate a potential owner, the shelter turned to social media. Posts on Twitter and Facebook asking if anyone is “missing a llama” quickly gained traction.

In a welcome change of pace from previous unusual animal escapes in the D.C. region, Kolby’s adventure appears to have a happy ending: the shelter’s staff located her owner yesterday (Tuesday).

“He was eager to be reunited with his llama,” Currier said. “…Kolby received a lot of attention from the shelter staff and seemed to enjoy all of it.”

While not as common as horses or sheep, llamas are permitted as livestock in Fairfax County. The zoning ordinance allows up to five llamas per acre of land, provided the property is at least two acres in size — a rule that also applies to their cousins, alpacas.

Should any other llamas pop up and make a scene, Currier advises community members to contact Animal Protection Police, which can be reached at 703-691-2131 or FCPDAnimalProtection@FairfaxCounty.gov.