By Justin Suder
The Parsons Advocate
Rumor has it Alpacas spit all the time, but not according to Diane Baisden who is the owner of Sam’s Barnyard and Petting Zoo as well as Cooper House Consignments, both located in Canaan Valley. Located at 5460 Appalachian Highway, Davis WV, Sam’s Barnyard and Petting Zoo has a variety of animals. You will find dwarf miniature goats, sheep and alpacas to baby kittens, guinea pigs and more!
Animals that people can pet or hold include goats, sheep, kittens, guinea pigs, rabbits and a talking parrot. Guests can even hand feed the goats. Other animals that guests can get close to and pet, but have to stay in their pins are cows and alpacas. According to Baisden, Alpacas are not known for spitting unless they are mad. Even when they get their monthly shots, they do not spit. Baisden said when they do spit is during when they are sheered because they do not enjoy it. To keep them calm during the sheering process, she will hold them and pet them. The Alpacas have been with Baisden for over five years well before the petting zoo was opened. Guests are able to pet their sides and faces, but they are not overly friendly.
One other unique animal located here is the female Scottish Highland. They were not introduced to America until the 1960s from Scotland. According to Baisden, she is not one that you can hug, but can be seen because of its rarity.
Many of the animals at the petting zoo were born on-site, where others have been adopted from families in the community. If a family has a big herd in the community, it is possible
Baisden may receive it, especially if the animal is still at the age to be bottle fed. Being bottle fed is important and helps the animals be more adjusted to being around people.
There are also free range chickens of many different breeds located on-site, as well as ducks and guinea hens.
“It is a fun and enjoyable time,” stated Baisden.
Copper House Consignments is the other business located at the same address. Items include a range from small items to larger items and furniture.
According to Baisden, the consignment shop is going very well with many people bringing new things and just as many people buying. The turnaround is high.
“There are some antiques and older furniture, but there is new furniture as well. All s very well taken care of, and is looked at before people bring it to be sold,” Baisden explained. “Many people compliment what we have saying it is good quality, heavy and in good condition.”
According to Baisden, people will be surprised with the quality of items and the price of items. “We try to keep the prices low, but high quality,” Baisden stated.
Baisden is a retired school teacher and runs these businesses now for her own enjoyment. Baisden’s husband, Sam, works away, but helps out when he is home.
Sam’s Barnyard Animals and Petting Zoo opened a little over two years ago. It is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week from May through September. Copper House Consignment is open Wednesday through Sunday year round during the same time. You can find them on facebook or contact them during business hours at 304.940.9076.