AN ADORABLE video shows a rescued owlet grooming her new best friend – a nine stone Newfoundland dog.
Eight-week-old barn owl Jess can be seen cuddling up to four-year-old Koko on Sunday after striking up an unlikely friendship.
Jess, who weighs just 350 grams, was filmed squaking in enjoyment as Koko is shown lying on the ground getting her fur stroked by her feathered friend.
The unique duo were brought together by Koko’s owner, Anita Morris who works with Cheshire Falconry, training birds of prey as therapets.
The heartwarming clip of the two them together has attracted almost 5,000 views on Twitter and dozens of comments.
@Odam777 said: “I just love these two together.”
@HowatsonCarrie said: “Koko you are so good and chilled out.”
@mk_inwa said: “Oh my days! A Barn Owl puppy.”
@chh4883 said: “That dog is so gentle and puts up with everything. Just amazing!”
Jess was a rescue barn owl chick after she was found with a very low life expectancy.
She was recued by falconers amid fears her mother would eat her – as she did her firstborn.
Falconers put Jess, while she was still in her egg, inside an incubator where she spent her early days.
Anita Morris, from Cheshire, who captured the video is a psychologist who works with children and young people with mental health issues.
The 57-year-old combines her work with birds of prey as part of animal assisted therapy.
Along with Jess, Koko is a dog who has worked in therapy since he was a puppy.
Speaking today (wed), Anita said: “Birds of prey are not like other animals. They will only work with you if they trust you, this takes a long time to build up and is what I am currently doing with Jess as well as starting her training.
“They will not work with you if you are agitated so there is a need to stay calm. They remain wild animals so you need to have respect for them.
“When I am working with young people with autism they want to work with the birds so there is a motivation to change behaviour.
“A boy who I worked with who was eight with autism and ADHD found it very difficult to stay still and to focus. He wanted Murray my burrowing owl to fly to him and to wanted Murray to stay with him.
“Murray would fly to the boy and fly off again because the boy was agitated. Through questioning the boy soon learned that Murray flew to him mum because mum sat calmly and quietly.
“Again through questioning the boy realised that he needed to stay calm and quiet. Over a period of six weeks the boy learned to calm himself and eventually Murray flew to him and sat with him for five minutes.
“We then spent time helping the boy to apply this to other areas of his life.”
The unlikely friendship between the pair blossomed right from the beginning.
Anita said: “Koko was obsessed with Jess when she was a new born chick, and now whenever Koko walks into a room Jess always flies over to her. They are inseparable.”
Anita is part of an award winning social enterprise known as Hack Back CIC, which is predominately based in the North West of England.
The organisation works with a wide range of individuals who suffer from significant barriers which prevent them from reaching their full potential in life.
Hack Back CIC tries to make a significant difference to the lives of these people through interaction with Birds of Prey, in partnership with Cheshire Falconry.