A builder has heads turning at the sight of his unusual choice of household pet – a six-month-old GOOSE.
Andrey Gurin, 34, was inspired after hearing a story of a goose that was trained and taken around the USSR on show by his owner.
Andrey, from Minsk, Belarus, then bought an egg from a seller, set up an incubator and hatched the egg at home.
Six months on, Andrey and feathered friend Harvister have grown close and Andrey takes great enjoyment from washing, feeding and walking him.
But he admitted his obsession with bizarre pets caused the breakdown of his previous marriage and said Harvister’s place in the family has even sparked arguments with his current girlfriend.
Andrey said: “I had been thinking about getting a pet goose for two years; what apartment to rent? What would people think and say?
“Then I finally said to myself ‘this is cool, I just need to try’.
“I had read about geese and they are quite clever, smarter than other birds.
“It is so interesting and funny to watch Harvister’s behaviour as he grows, seeing what he likes and does not like.
“My friends and family were shocked but when we go to events together all of them are stunned as the goose is very sociable.
“He loves my friends.
“Harvister sleeps everywhere – on my rucksack or my shoes.
“He even sleeps in my bed sometimes because he starts pinching me if I do not let him.”
Andrey believes that due to the help of classical music playing in his incubator, as Harvister hatched a day earlier than expected on April 30 this year.
The goose’s name was chosen as a combination of the name ‘Harvey’ and a combined harvester.
Andrey sometimes dresses Harvister up in costumes, and the pair relax at home and watch television together.
And Andrey said the pair have since before celebrities in their neighbourhood – with fans swarming them for selfies every time they leave the house.
He said: “It’s quite hard to walk with him in the street, but not because of him but because of people around they all want to take photos and ask questions.
“Sometimes I want to stick a FAQs list on my back!”
However, it seems Harvister is not necessarily a fan of all humans after ‘deliberately’ depositing a nasty surprise in Andrey’s girlfriend’s shoe.
He said: “When I was younger I had an English Bulldog called Sunny, then I wanted to have a fox but I was married and my wife was against it.
“I insisted and that was a reason for divorce.
“Now, I think Harvister could be jealous of my current girlfriend.
“He tends to pinch her and once left a surprise on her shoes deliberately.”