Interview with Real Reindeer Owner Angie

We have so many questions every year from people young and old about the reindeer in our centre, which is why we paid a visit to the Northamptonshire countryside to see how Real Reindeer‘s Reindeer spend their days and to speak to have your questions answered by the owner, Angie!


Hi there, we are looking forward to welcoming you back to Christopher Place, St Albans again this year. Our customers love to see the reindeer and learn all about these wonderful animals. We have so many questions every year from people young and old, so have compiled a list for you!

How long have you kept reindeer for, how many have you got and where do they live?

“We’ve kept reindeer for 13yrs and we have 40. They live in the beautiful countryside in Northamptonshire.”

How do the reindeer cope in our climate in the UK?

“In the winter they grow their coat according to how cold it becomes. Reindeer moult in the summer and have short summer coats like horses. Believe it or not, in the Arctic circle the temperature gets to about 30-35 degrees in the summer, so they are quite happy here in the UK.”

What do they eat?

“They eat grass, leaves, straw, hay, sugarbeet and a specific reindeer pellet.”

Where do they sleep?

“Our reindeer sleep wherever they want.. indoors or under the stars!”

Tell us more about their antlers, do they need trimming or do they fall off?

“The antlers fall off every year and regrow from March to July when they are covered in velvet. Their antlers can break during the growing season, this is quite normal.”

Do they like meeting the public/crowded places? 

“Yes, they enjoy coming out and meeting everyone. They do exactly what they do at home – eat, sleep and chew the cud. We are careful to make sure that where the reindeer are displayed is appropriate and there is nothing that would upset them.”

How do you decide which reindeer come to Christopher Place?

“I match the reindeer to the job and to the reindeer handlers, and it depends on how the reindeer are feeling on the day”

Do you think it’s cruel to bring them to shopping centres?

“No, it’s about education. There has been so much incorrect information put out about the reindeer and it brings such joy to many, many people. If the shopping centres and other places do not support the British Reindeer then it would be a big issue for how to provide for them.”

What would happen to all the British reindeer in the UK?

“Any money we charge is put straight back into caring for the reindeer”

Why do you think it’s important for children and adults to see the reindeer up close? 

“It’s so important for people to see how happy, relaxed and in good condition they are, and of course we talk to children about how they fly!”

How do you respond to press articles about reindeer getting stressed at public events?

“People who do not know reindeer think if they are sleeping or eating on display they are stressed. This simply is not true. Reindeer owners have a responsibility to ensure that the reindeer are well trained.”

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