What type of sheep is it? ‘White!’ Cute three-year-old shepherdess becomes a viral video star
- Credit: Caitlin Jenkins
A grinning three-year-old shepherdess and her excitable sheep Ethel have become viral internet stars, with more than 1.4m views of a social media video described as “the cutest thing I have ever seen”.
Barley Brook Sellar, from Wood Norton near Fakenham, was filmed for her entry in the young handlers’ competition in The Greatest Online Agriculture Show on Saturday.
She demonstrates her skills with Ethel, part of her own flock of sheep given to her by her grandfather on her first birthday.
Barley’s mother Caitlin Jenkins can be heard posing questions including what type of sheep Ethel is – to which Barley declares “White!” before correctly identifying her as a Border Leicester. Then, prompted by encouraging nudges from Ethel, the pair go for a short walk before Barley commands her sheep to “stand” and flashes a toothy grin to complete her performance.
After receiving the entry, competition judge and Cumbrian farmer James Rebanks tweeted the video saying: “Spent the last hour judging the online sheep show. And I have to tell you that the young handlers under-8 class was the cutest thing I have ever seen.”
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And more than 1.4m people had watched the clip by the following afternoon.
Miss Jenkins said she was “a bit overwhelmed” by her daughter’s newfound stardom.
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“I was not even on Twitter – I created an account just so I could follow it,” she said “It completely blew my mind.
“It is just the cute factor I think, and it gives people a reason to smile so that’s a good thing at the moment.
“I hope this is the start of something quite special. She has grown up around sheep and working dogs on the farm so she is very comfortable with animals. It is a brilliant way of bringing her up.”
Barley and Ethel will feature in The Greatest Online Agriculture Show on Saturday, a virtual event aiming to fill the void left by the coronavirus cancellations of events such as the Royal Norfolk Show.
“I have been going to shows for as long as I can remember,” said Miss Jenkins. “For Barley, it is a confidence-builder and she meets people and learns from them. It is a shame it couldn’t go head this year, but the online show is a brilliant idea. It is just a lot of fun so everybody does not feel they are missing out.”
• To visit the event, see The Greatest Online Agriculture Show website.