Forget truffles and those uppity pigs, Ken Wilman’s dog has a nose that knows … valuable whale vomit.
The 50-year-old Englishman was walking Madge along a beach in Morecambe, Lancashire recently when the boxer stumbled upon an unusual-looking rock that turned out to be $180,000 worth of whale vomit.
“She wouldn’t leave it alone,” he told Sky News. “I picked it up and it smelt horrible. … I put both pieces back on the beach but something in the back of my mind told me it might be something unusual.”
Following his instincts proved to be a wise decision since whale vomit, properly known as ambergris, can fetch hundreds of dollars per gram.
The chunk Wilman found is about 6.6 pounds, which is why some call it “floating gold,” according to MSN Now.
Ambergris can be used in perfumes, spices or medicines, the Telegraph said. It has a musky, pungent aroma.
It’s reportedly used in Chanel No. 5, and a 32-pound sample found seven years ago netted an Australian couple more than $290,000.
Wilman, unemployed since a motorcycle crash in 2007, plans to send a sample to a French company for verification.
“How much it is worth will depend on how fresh it is,” aquarium curator Chris Hill told the Telegraph.
“There are places in Europe that will buy it from you. They will age it, like a fine wine, and then test it for perfume.”