A Slovenian artist has been fertilised by her dog for an award-winning art project.

Artist Maja Smrekar had her eggs artificially fertilised by cells from her pet dog Byron.

The work of art is part of a series of works by Smrekar to celebrate the relationship and bond between humans and dogs.

Her eggs were fertilised with somatic (non-reproductive) cells from Byron, her Scottish Border Collie.

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Somatic cells are non-sexual cells so the material used was not sperm. The process used was not fully explained.

According to the Ars Electronica website, "the result is a hybrid cell, inherent in which is a dystopian scenario but which could create a new species whose chances of survival on Planet Earth are better than ours".

The artist also reportedly breast-fed an Icelandic Sheepdog called Ada after going on a special lactation-enhancing diet, as part of her project.

She also provided serotonin, a tissue hormone from her own body and from her dog Byron for chemists to use to make a special human-dog fragrance, called I Hunt Nature and Culture Hunts Me.

Her project, entitled K-9_topology, took the Golden Nica for Hybrid Art in the Prix Ars Electronica.

"K-9_topology is a true hybrid artwork with a profound bio-political message and is certain to bring a lot of discussion to the audience from both the art and science sides," the jury said in a statement.