Feature

For rent: a flock of sheep, and more

A sheep farmer is renting out her flock to the owners of bored sheepdogs.

For rent: a flock of sheep
A sheep farmer is renting out her flock to the owners of bored sheepdogs. Border collies have become fashionable as pets, but their inbred instinct to herd sheep is so strong that they will chew up the house and try to herd other animals if no sheep are available. Washington state farmer Chris Soderstrom, 63, is charging $15 for the temporary use of a field and 200 sheep, and she says she gets up to 18 clients a day who realize they “need to get their dog a job.”

When a skunk smells like pot
A team of 10 gun-wielding Canadian policemen barged into an innocent man’s house after mistaking the smell of a skunk living under the home for that of marijuana. “I opened the door and they all had their guns drawn,” said homeowner Oliver MacQuat. “I was terrified.” After a thorough search of the property, however, says MacQuat, “a senior officer came in and said, ‘There is a skunk, everything is clean.’ You could see they were all embarrassed and genuinely sorry.”

Heidi, the cross-eyed opossum
Heidi, a cross-eyed opossum, has become a huge international celebrity. The marsupial, recently installed in a German zoo, had its photo published a few weeks ago, and since then has accumulated more than 70,000 fans on Facebook and has been the subject of a hit song on YouTube. A German company is also rushing out a stuffed Heidi toy, retailing for $110. “It really is surprising how famous and loved she is,” said an official of the company. “I guess it has to do with being cross-eyed.”

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