THIS pint-sized lamb has astonished her owners by managing to survive – despite being less than half the size of her siblings.
Owner Rita Gatehouse said her family had been involved with farming all their lives, and that they welcomed about 500 lambs into the world each year during the lambing season.
But she claimed she had never seen a lamb so small manage to survive past one night- making this cute addition one of the smallest lambs in the country.
Rita said she was confident about the lamb’s future and she hopes it will go on to live a normal and happy life.
“The ewe gave birth to three lambs,” she said. “A great big one, a normal sized one and this tiny little one.
“We were very worried because you do get a few who die when you have been lambing for a long while.
“It’s the smallest one I’ve ever seen that has ever lived. I would say it’s just a bit bigger than a rabbit.
“Our grand-daughter brought it up from the shed into the house and we have had it in the washing basket ever since.”
And the little lamb, who has not been given a name, is already a big hit with Rita and husband John’s grandchildren who have set up her up with her own little spot in the farmhouse in Bitterly, Shropshire, in a washing basket.
Mrs Gatehouse said she had been exceptionally busy over the last few days as she was in the middle of the lambing season on the farm and was also called to help out a neighbour who asked her to help deliver a baby alpaca.
Rita, 65, said she was hopeful the little lamb would one day go on to have offspring of her own.
She said: “She’s quite a noisy little thing really. She’s got to be fed more than the others and on the night she was born I was up in the night going to feed her.
“She’s very small but saying that she seems quite bright and is loving having a stretch in the warmer weather. It’s a lovely story.”
Rita said she was not sure whether the lamb was the smallest one ever to have been born in Britain, but added she could not remember any being as tiny in all her lifetime.
“It’s really nice to see her out with all the other lambs and she doesn’t seem to have a care in the world,” she said
Mrs Gatehouse said the lamb was currently being fed milk on a bottle until it was big enough to suckle from its mother.
She said: “We will bring it up here on the farm when it grows to be a ewe we will keep it here because it will always be small.
“My grandchildren absolutely love the lamb and it’s a lovely little thing.”