A baby in Brazil has been compared to Stewie from Family Guy after she appeared to start walking minutes after she was born.
Doctors were trying to bathe her, but she had other ideas and started to wriggle around to walk on her own.
Normally, babies don’t start walking until they are about 12 months old. One of the nurses said in Portuguese: ‘Oh my gosh, the girl is walking. Good gracious.’
Another colleague shouts ‘Ju, Ju, come and see this’.
A midwife said: ‘Merciful father. I was trying to wash her here and she keeps getting up to walk. She has walked from here to here.’
It is believed the footage was shot at Santa Cruz Hospital in Rio Grande do Sul, southern Brazil.
One of the people in the hospital said: ‘Wow, she is so cute it’s amazing. If she’s like this now, I can just imagine how precocious she is going to be as she grows up.’
To which the midwife holding the baby girl says: ‘Heavens above. If you told people what has just happened no one would believe it unless they saw it with their own eyes.’
For the midwife, it is particularly surprising to hear this as it is not that uncommon in newborn babies – it’s actually something they often show naturally.
Known as the walking or stepping reflex, ‘if you hold the baby under the arms (being careful to support her head, as well) and let her soles touch a flat surface, she’ll place one foot in front of the other and “walk”,’ Healthy Children writes.
‘This reflex will disappear after two months, then recur as the learned voluntary behavior of walking toward the end of the first year.’
The walking reflex is part of what are known as ‘primitive reflexes’. It’s an infant’s nervous system kicking in before the mind or the body has grown to understand or cope with what is going on around them.
“This is a totally normal reflex that babies have,” Megan Heere, MD, assistant professor of pediatrics at Temple University and medical director at Temple’s Well Baby Nursery, told Health. “If anything, this video really highlights the reflex and is a good example of what normal babies do.”
According to the publication, infants possess a number of “primitive reflexes” as soon at birth. The step or walking reflex, allows babies to “walk” when held upright with their feet touching a solid surface and is present for about the first two months of life.
And Daniela Corbetta, PhD, director of the Infant Perception-Action Laboratory at the University of Tennessee Knoxville, told Health this reflex has been documented in newborns since the 1940s.
It “looks like walking, but really is only a stepping motion,” Corbetta said. “This is very far from being able to walk.