Two dark-coloured alpaca crias aged 5 and 5.5 months, respectively, born in September in the Pacific Northwest, USA, were presented for evaluation of acute recumbency.
Both crias had cervical spine fractures and one had additional fractures in other locations within the spine. Both crias had valgus deformities of the forelimbs and one had similar deformities of the hindlimbs. Both crias showed characteristic radiological signs of rickets syndrome, including wide, irregular physes, cupping of the metaphyses, bowing of long bones, pathological fractures and enlarged costochondral junctions.
One cria responded clinically to treatment with parenteral administration of vitamin D. The other cria was euthanased because of the multiple spinal fractures and postmortem examination supported the diagnosis of rickets syndrome.