Cloning a pet involves some unpleasant facts, explains one veterinarian

Your pets can’t live forever, so why not clone them like Barbra Streisand did? A vet has several reasons why you shouldn’t.

WASHINGTON – “I want to clone this dog.”

Oh good? Fair enough. They’re adorable, they do adorable stuff, and you don’t want to say goodbye when they’re gone. There, no argument. Understandable.

Then again, you probably thought of him as a figure of speech.

In recent years, technology has given (high income) pet owners the ability to put it literally. One of these owners is Barbra Streisand. In a recent interview with Variety, the artist revealed that she created two clones of her pet dog, Samantha, after her death last year.

This raised the question of whether an owner should really put their money where they say they are. And a veterinarian, Dr Katy Nelson, says curious owners should reconsider their decision. The lab procedure involves what she called a “very expensive and highly scientific puppy mill.”

“Just because you can it doesn’t mean you should,” Nelson told Deborah Feinstein and Marc Lewis of the WTO.

The procedure – which costs around $ 50,000 for dogs and $ 25,000 for cats – works this way, she explained:

  • DNA is extracted from the animal to be cloned, usually by a tissue biopsy. This tissue is cryogenically preserved.
  • The “surrogate” animals create fertilized eggs.
  • DNA is then deleted from these eggs and the preserved DNA of the animal is inserted.
  • These modified eggs are then reimplanted into surrogate animals, which may or may not become pregnant and carry them to term.

Surrogate animals don’t seem to lead pleasant lives, Nelson explained.

“These animals are being kept against their will,” she said. “They are maintained with hormonal supplements, so they can create these embryos at will.”

These surrogate animals also undergo multiple pregnancies just to create a viable puppy or kitten clone – and unnecessary clones face an uncertain fate. Additionally, the commercial labs that clone pets are not necessarily aware of what is going on behind the scenes, she said.

And if you don’t mind ethics, consider this: A cloning doesn’t mean a carbon copy of the personality you know and love.

“It may be a genetically identical animal that may look different from the animal you had,” said Nelson, who added that researchers say cloned animals are more likely to suffer from birth defects. and diseases.

“My question to people who want to do this is, are you really that desperate to make a carbon copy, or did you have such an incredible bond with this pet that you want that love again? unconditional and this personality? ” Nelson said.

Instead, the vet recommends taking that $ 50,000, spending a hundred on the costs of adopting a shelter animal, and donating the rest “to save many more animals in need.”

Listen to Nelson discuss animal cloning below.

Dr Katy Nelson on Pet Cloning (WTOP)


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