17 weird jobs you probably didn't know exist

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It seems as though we can pay people to do anything for us these days: walk our dogs, build our furniture, organize our homes ... cuddle with us when we're feeling lonely.

That's right: You can hire a professional cuddler to snuggle with you for about $60 an hour. You can also pay an "undercover bridesmaid" to stand next to you on your big day, or a professional mourner to cry with you at a loved one's funeral.

Those are just a few of the weirdest jobs we found while compiling our list of the most unusual professionals.

17 weird jobs you probably didn't know exist
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17 weird jobs you probably didn't know exist

Snake Milker

Snake milkers extract venom from some of the world's most dangerous snakes, like rattlesnakes and cobras. The extracted venom is often used to create antivenom for hospital or laboratory use, and can be sold for up to $1,000 per gram.

(Jason Reed / Reuters)

Odor judges

Odor judges perform odor tests to rate the effectiveness of hygiene products like soaps and bodywashes, deodorant, and mouthwashes. Depending on what products are being studied,  judges smell subjects' armpits, feet, or breath and rate their odors on a scale of one to 10.

During one odor tester's 15-year career she sniffed approximately 5,600 feet and an indeterminate number of armpits, for which she won the Guiness World Record for most feet and armpits sniffed.

(Photo by Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Professional Bridesmaid

Professional bridesmaid Jen Glantz (C) is the cofounder of Bridesmaid for Hire, a company that offers 'undercover bridesmaid' and personal assistant-type services to brides and their wedding parties.

"Essentially I'm there as the bride's personal assistant and on-call therapist," Glanz tells Business Insider. "I help her manage and execute her personal to-do list of tasks, which can often be over 100 tasks long."

She charges anywhere from $300 to $2,000 per wedding.

(The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Iceberg Mover

Iceberg mover became a profession after the disastrous sinking of the Titanic in 1912.

The International Ice Patrol (IIP), which was founded a year later, is operated by the US Coast Guard. It tracks the location of icebergs and provides safe routes around them. If necessary, the iceberg will be towed out of the area.

(DreamPictures via Getty Images)

Professional Mourner

Professional mourners attend funerals and grieve for the deceased. A company in England called Rent A Mourner specializes in the industry, offering mourners for two hours for roughly $70. 

(kzenon via Getty Images)

Dog Surfing Instructor

Dog surfing instructors, whom you can find at certain ocean resorts, are people you pay to teach you and your dog to surf. Some locations even offer classes strictly for dogs. 

(REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

Panda Nanny

In 2014, the Giant Panda Protection and Research Center in China's Sichuan announced its worldwide search for panda cub caretakers. Contenders faced several elimination rounds including a top 500 list, top 50 list, top 10 list, and a final media event competition before getting the gig.

“Your work has only one mission: spending 365 days with the pandas and sharing in their joys and sorrows,” Chinadaily.com reported organizers explaining.

(Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)

Professional Mermaid

Professional mermaids can make a decent amount of money performing at parties and teaching others how to "swim like a mermaid." They typically charge $300 per hour at birthday parties. But becoming a licensed mermaid and learning how to start your own mermaid business is pricey. Montreal-based company Aqua Mermaid charges entrepreneurs $3,800 for a five-day training course.

(REUTERS/Tyrone Siu)

Face Feeler

Face feelers, also known as 'sensory scientists,' are trained to use their hands and judge the effectiveness of products like lotions, facial cleansers, and razors. Face feelers work part-time, but they can earn up to $25 per hour.

(dolgachov via Getty Images)

Professional Cuddler 

Professional cuddlers charge up to $80 an hour to snuggle with strangers. 

(Hero Images via Getty Images)

Professional TV Watcher

Professional TV watcher is a real job — but it's not necessarily as easy as it sounds. According to an Investopedia.com article, pro TV watchers 'usually scan through different shows and news clips, and find the right clips that can be used on a television show or news program.' The article also says when Jimmy Kimmel was looking for a TV watcher back in 2005, his show was offering pay of $500 to $600 per week.

(Robert Daly via Getty Images)

Ash Artists

Ash artists get creative with the remains of our loved ones. Following cremation, some people choose to hire these artists to create a token of remembrance, like a necklace or glass sculpture.

(Photo by Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Professional Foreigner

Some Chinese companies will pay men $1,000 a week to don a business suit and shake hands with Chinese businessmen, while others will hire foreigners to attend real-estate events and pose as celebrities.

"It is a widespread belief in China that if foreigners are hired at an event, the whole thing is bumped up to another level," a real-estate agent from the outskirts of Chongqing told The Times.

(Westend61 via Getty Images)

Dog Food Taster

Human dog food tasters are hired by pet food companies to test the quality of their products. They also evaluate the nutritional value and usually spit out the food once they taste it.

(ThamKC via Getty Images)

Chicken Sexer

Chicken sexers determine the sex of a chick, relying heavily on intuition. Usually hired by commercial hatcheries, these professionals (who are more common in the UK and Japan) make up to $60,000 a year.

(Anthony Lee via Getty Images)

Professional Line-stander

Professional line-standers do one thing most of us have no patience for: wait in line. These professionals are especially busy during big sales (think Black Friday) and product launches (new iPhone releases, for example). Rates vary, but one professional line-stander told Business Insider he earns up to $1,000 a week.


Fortune Cookie Writer

Fortune cookie manufacturers usually hire freelancers or in-house writers to come up with inspiring or witty fortunes. EHow.com estimates that these professionals earn around $40,000 a year.

(Lisa J. Goodman via Getty Images)


(Steven Benna and Jacquelyn Smith contributed to an earlier version of this article.)

See Also:

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SEE ALSO: 15 important jobs women have yet to hold in the US

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