Friday, April 11, 2008

Florida couple and their primate 'monkid'

Lori Johnson was lonely and depressed after her youngest son left home in 1992. She yearned for another child to love. So Johnson bought a baby monkey.

"She was a little, bitty, teeny thing staring up at me," said Johnson, 58, who lives in Deltona with her husband and Jessica Marie, a 5-pound capuchin she calls her daughter. "She was enough to steal anyone's heart, she was."Like Johnson, there is a growing group of monkey lovers who pay big bucks to diaper and dote on their primates. Some even raise them as surrogate children.

Many self-described "monkey people" don't dare call them pets. They are playfully referred to as "monkids" and reared in a world of pierced ears, monogrammed clothes, a seat at the dinner table and their own bedrooms. There's a photo gallery here.

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