IN THE PAST you might have had your favourite pet painted or even stuffed. Now you can collect the combed fur from your dog, your cat, even your rabbit throughout its life and have the combings knitted into a waistcoat, cardigan or sweater.

Pam Gardner is the woman behind this novel idea. The hair from her much loved (and very much alive) Old English Sheepdog, Shep, combined with sheep's wool, has already provided her with three outfits.

'Some people think it's weird but anybody who keeps sheep or a long haired cat or dog is interested,' says Pam. 'My husband encouraged me to start but he won't wear Shep's jumpers because they are too fluffy for him.'

She has also spun the combings from Persian cats, chincilla and Angora rabbits, St Bernards and rough-coated collies. She is open to commissions and charges pounds 2 to spin an ounce of dog and sheep's wool and pounds 2.50 for a rabbit blend. Telephone 0327 350025.