You won’t find Hobbiness in Wikipedia!

Mazal-Mike-Sarah-HRHobbiness, noun, a combination of Hobby and Business.” Fiction. The word Hobbiness is not in the dictionary.  This concept cannot exist in reality.

In other words, your craft cannot be both a Hobby and a Business.  You must decide whether you want to pursue a vocation as either a hobby or business, and this is the first concept that I advise people to choose when contemplating owning alpacas.  It is “alright” to keep alpacas as a hobby.  You do not need to turn it into a business.  On our farm, alpacas are a business, but I also have English Angora Rabbits, Honeybees, and a Heritage Garden plus I enjoy far too many crafts.  I fancy all of these activities and some days I put as much time and effort into managing my hobbies as I do to my business.  However, I do not intend to make any of my hobbies into a business.  I give away my honey,  offer vegetables from the garden, harvest fiber from the rabbits, and try in earnest to be a fiber artist.

Here’s what you can do if you own alpacas as a hobby

Enter AOA shows!
Have crias!
Harvest fiber!
Make product from your harvest!
Participate in NAFD!
Register your alpaca!
Take your alpacas to any event!
Raise alpacas with amazing fleece!
Test your alpaca fiber!
Co-op your fiber in exchange for a product!
Join AOA and/or an Affiliate!
Participate on alpaca committees!
Attend education events!
Mentor fellow alpaca owners!
Give tours!
Win a ribbon…or even a BANNER!
Post on social media!
Have a farm name!
Become an Expert!

And there are ways that you can MAKE MONEY in the “alpaca business” without SELLING ALPACAS! You can own alpacas (as a hobby) and  make money

Shearing alpacas!
Selling product that you handcrafted!
Selling product that you purchased wholesale!
Judge alpacas!
Being a consultant!
Through agritourism!
Selling manure!
Selling meat!
Selling hides!
Testing fiber!
Working for AOA!
Managing an alpaca farm!
As an employee on an alpaca farm!
In alpaca related publications!
As a broker!
As a B & B!
Become a speaker!

Owning alpacas does not mean you must sell them…Not owning alpacas does not mean you can’t have an alpaca related business…Owning alpacas means you must decide if you want to have an alpaca “animal” hobby or alpaca “animal” business.

You can be every bit as involved in the alpaca industry whether you enter it as a hobby or as a business.  Owning alpacas as a hobby does not mean you are any less knowledgeable or dedicated or involved or busy or T-shirt tanned or dirty…it simply means that you don’t register it as a business and file the appropriate tax forms.  But for those of you that enjoy spreadsheets, you can still track your expenses!!!!

I believe I will always be involved with alpacas, whether as a hobby or a business, whether I own alpacas or I work in an alpaca related field.  That is one of many wonderful aspects of this industry! And honestly, once you are “in” alpacas, I don’t believe you ever leave!