WATCH: Trail Runner Accidentally Ends up Leading Herd of Hundreds of Sheep

by Amy Myers

An unsuspecting trail runner became a shepherdess when she suddenly found a huge flock of sheep eagerly following her every step.

On September 9, an artist exploring, Eleanor Scholz, a trail near Puy de Dôme, France found a woman leading the herd through the trees. Naturally, Scholz, a California native, stopped at the side of the trail and recorded the bizarre incident. She asked the runner about her odd situation, and apparently, the sheep didn’t belong to her. In fact, she wasn’t sure where they even came from.

Strange as the incident was, this didn’t stop the woman from finishing her run. As they chatted, the flock patiently waited for the conversation to end, dutifully waiting for their leader’s next step. After speaking to Scholz, the runner continued her route as normal, and the sheep kept pace behind her. And off they disappeared into the trees.

Take a look.

Unfortunately, we don’t know if the sheep made it back to their original home or if they decided to just keep following the runner to her house. But the good news is that the sheep were all numbered, so there’s bound to be a shepherd looking for them.

According to Kim and Chuck Goodling, professional homestead mentors and shepherds behind the blog, Living with Gotlands, sheep naturally follow a leader.

“If you can get one sheep moving, then the rest will most likely follow,” the Goodling’s shared. “Leaders tend to be the most dominant sheep in the flock.”

Whichever way the animals ended up on the trail, at least one of the flock members spotted the passing runner and deemed her a trustworthy authority. That said, the professional shepherds also explained that sheep will follow someone they know and trust. Perhaps the woman resembled one of the flock’s actual caretakers.

Sheep Flock Was Likely Spooked onto Trail When They Found New Leader

Another potential factor in this adorable incident is some sort of stressor for the wooly creatures. Sheep tend to run when something frightens them, putting them in a survival state of mind.

“Quick movements, loud noises, and dogs, will all put sheep on the run,” the Goodling’s said.

With this in mind, it’s possible that something spooked the flock and left them in need of a confident leader. Enter the trail runner.

It’s possible that the sheep encountered something on the farm and found an opening to run. Disoriented and in need of direction, they found it in the bypasser for as long as she would allow it. Hopefully, she at least called local animal control officers to help detach the herd from their makeshift shepherd.