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Biotech Science

Get the Family Dog Cloned 240

Anonymous writes "Some of you may have seen 'The 6th Day,' the movie with Arnold Schwarzenegger a few years back. If you recall there was a 're-pet' cloning service to get your dog back if you ever lost them. Enter 'Best Friends Again': 'A US biotech company on Wednesday announced it will auction off the right for five dog owners to have their furry best friend cloned, with bidding starting at 100,000 dollars. "BioArts International ... will sell five dog cloning service slots to the general public via a worldwide online auction," the California-based biotech start-up said in a statement.'"
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Get the Family Dog Cloned

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  • by crazybit ( 918023 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @07:58AM (#23503216)
    are Playboy bunnies.

    wonder if I can clone them too...
  • Ridiculous (Score:5, Funny)

    by oodaloop ( 1229816 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @07:59AM (#23503236)
    If we can put a man on the moon, I should be able to get my dog cloned for under 100k.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by MRe_nl ( 306212 )
      "Your pet doesn't want to break your heart and now he doesn't have to."
      Here is where the reality kicks in. We may be hearing a similar slogan very, very soon. The Financial Times informs us that the first commercial sale of a pet cloning deal has been made. A disabled woman from California, has decided to give the South Korean company RNL Bio, the contract to clone her recently deceased Pitbull Terrier named Booger. The woman has trouble walking, and besides the love she has for Booger, she also misses all
  • by Coopjust ( 872796 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:00AM (#23503242)
    Let's hope that this company has greater success [wired.com] than earlier ones [slashdot.org]...

    (Yeah, I know that the wired article says "Dead cats", but Genetic Savings & Clone was also a dog cloning company)
  • by sakdoctor ( 1087155 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:02AM (#23503252) Homepage
    Let's face it, you are going to have to invest the time to re-train the clone, so isn't genetically descended almost identical to genetically-identical in practical terms?
    • by cephah ( 1244770 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:05AM (#23503286)
      Sure, but I doubt this is about anything but social status among rich people. Bragging about a cottage up in Aspen pales compared to having one of only five genetically cloned dogs.
      • by tobiasly ( 524456 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @10:53AM (#23505404) Homepage

        What I'm curious about is whether the cloned dog will smell exactly like the original to other dogs. Scent is more important to dogs than sight; that butt-sniffing ritual they perform when they meet each other lets them remember each other for a long time. Smelling another dog's urine will let a dog know who the other dog was, whether it was male/female (and if the latter, where it was in its menses), whether it was sick, etc.

        So if I cloned Aloysius, would my other dogs think the new dog was him? If I cloned him while he was alive, would he think he was smelling himself?

    • by Hal_Porter ( 817932 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:09AM (#23503304)

      Let's face it, you are going to have to invest the time to re-train the clone, so isn't genetically descended almost identical to genetically-identical in practical terms?
      No, the cloned dog is souless Thing That Should Not Be. Probably possesed by a demon from hell.

      Imagine that a demon with the face of your best friend. Muahahaha.
      • by antifoidulus ( 807088 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:28AM (#23503456) Homepage Journal
        No, the cloned dog is souless Thing That Should Not Be. Probably possesed by a demon from hell.

        How is that different from dogs that aren't clones? *(Cat person)
        • A dog is accurately described as man's best friend, cat person, and nothing you say can or will change that.
          • by CastrTroy ( 595695 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @09:07AM (#23503922) Homepage

            A dog is accurately described as man's best friend
            I'm not sure how accurate that statement is. You don't hear stories of cats mauling their owners faces off. Sure a scratch or two, but nothing. Violence aside, raising a dog takes almost as much energy as raising a child, if you want to do it well. Even a well trained dog is only as independant as a 3-4 year old. If you want to have a dog, you might as well have a child. Cats on the other hand, are much more independent. Put food out for them, change the litter box every few days, and they are set. They are just as affectionate as dogs, and require much less maintenance. I'm not sure why more people prefer dogs.
            • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

              by MrNaz ( 730548 ) *
              Mauling is in the eye of the beholder. You call it "mauling their face off". I call it "love nipping". Don't let your opinions colour your judgment, cat person.
            • I'm not sure why more people prefer dogs.

              Because I don't remember the last time a dog ran up the curtains, got into the upper cabinets, or got him/herself stuck in a tree or on the roof. You never have to look up to find a dog.

              And how affectionate is a cat that doesn't come when called?

              • by EMeta ( 860558 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @10:08AM (#23504704)
                Most cats I know come when called. You just have to understand their real names are all the sound a can opening makes.
              • On the other hand, my housemate's dog just chewed a hole in the carpet in the center of the room. So yeah, there's that.
              • you forgot the cat also climbs into the duct work and needs to extracted.

                The damn cat knocked loose a loose air duct(it was only set into place), then crawled into the wall. I had to crawl into a 1 foot high crawl space to try and drag him back out. would the cat come when called? nope he stuck his head up so i could see him but no he wouldn't walk towards me until i reached in and dragged him out. 8 hours stuck in a vent and not a bit of thanks did I get.

            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by Sir Foxx ( 755504 )
              Because my dog, and everyone I've ever had in my lifetime(9), will risk her life for me and my family defending us. She will not stop, until she is dead, if she feels we are threatened. No cat will/would do this. With dogs there is a true bond, with cats only an agreement.
            • I guess most people don't like having anything around the house that's smarter than they are...
            • by KermodeBear ( 738243 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @10:08AM (#23504708) Homepage

              If you want to have a dog, you might as well have a child.
              Are you kidding me? Children:
              * Can't be potty trained for over a year. A dog takes a few days.
              * Can't be left alone for a few hours. A dog is perfectly fine by himself.
              * Are extremely expensive. Dogs are very cheap in comparison.
              * Will turn into teenagers and dress in all black to spite you. Dogs are always affectionate.

              Dogs are way better than human children, and they're a hell of a lot cuter, too. I have no idea why humans breed these days, at least here in the US.

              I'd have to disagree that cats are 'just as affectionate' as dogs. I have lived with both. I have also lived with horses, rabbits, cattle, snakes, mice, fish, ferrets, and a few other critters. None of them are as affectionate or attentive as a dog. I would put horses or ferrets second.

              Dogs are designed to be pack animals. Cats are designed to be independent loners. One is going to be more affectionate and social than the other by default. Sure, there are always exceptions, but in general, I've found this to be true.

              Cats are great if all you want is a fuzzy companion walking about that doesn't require maintenance, and if your living space is limited. Dogs are great if you want more interaction, and don't mind the extra work and you have more room.

              I would never, ever keep a dog in an apartment or a small house, not even one of those little ankle biters. Dogs need some room to run around.

              That said, dogs really aren't all that much work. I have three dogs right now. I put out food for them to eat as they wish, I change the water twice a day, and they have a doggie door out into a fenced yard if they want to pee or whatever. Check over the yard every day or two and pick up any poop, only takes a few minutes to clean up. It works really well.

              I've also never seen a cat play fetch, play tug of war, warn strangers, get my slippers, etc., etc. Dogs have a more advanced brain (I'm not going to dig up the articles, but you can find them if you want) and are simply capable of more. Cats are more hard wired. Granted, automatic potty training is a plus, but beyond that your options are limited.

              Another reason I prefer dogs? They're awesome kissers. (o:
              • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 22, 2008 @10:26AM (#23504962)

                Another reason I prefer dogs? They're awesome kissers. (o:
                Love sees no species.
                Where's the -1 frighteningly appropriate sig mod?
              • by mrbooze ( 49713 )
                As an aspiring actor dressed as a Klingon at Quark's Bar & Grill in Las Vegas once told me:

                "Human children are the stickiest, most-secretive children in the entire galaxy."

                (That was "secretive" pronounced as in "secrete", not "secret".)
              • Speaking of dog vs cat psychology, there is one major factor that can make dogs uniquely problematic. As you say, they are pack animals. The problem with this is in how a pack works. There are the dominant members of the pack, and there are the submissive ones. As such, dogs are always on the lookout for when they can move up in the pack hierarchy. They're basically always looking for any sign of weakness you might show so that they can exploit it and turn the tables on you.

                So yeah, they're pretty much
              • I agree with you that dogs are better than cats. but my friends do have a cat which plays fetch more often than the dog does. The cat drags around his favorite toy all over the house. it is really quite funny.

                I don't have a pet myself as i come and go all summer long so I am rarely home(IE to sleep and shower, and occasionally eat). i think it would be unfair to the animal.
            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by matt4077 ( 581118 )
              A cat always looks down on you. A dog always looks up to you.

              A pig looks you in the eyes and recognizes you as an equal,
            • You want proof that dogs are man's best friend? Force your wife and your dog into the trunk of your car and drive over speed-bumps and potholes for 4 hours. Guess which one is happy to see you when you finally open the trunk?
            • by dubl-u ( 51156 ) *

              raising a dog takes almost as much energy as raising a child, if you want to do it well.
              I'm trying to figure out which you've never raised: a dog or a child. If you really have raised both, than I'm very worried for one of them.
            • by cching ( 179312 )

              I'm not sure why more people prefer dogs.
              Because some people enjoy the experience of training and working with dogs? That's the one thing missing from cats IMO, you can't train them, or it's extremely difficult to do so. Or try taking your cat out for a walk or a run :-P

              I love dogs and cats, but they each have their place.
    • Yep, it would be better just to have two dogs and let them have puppies or something. I think the most important thing is to get the pet at a really young age so that it develops a strong bond with you. We had a couple of cats, one was a bit friendlier than the other, she had kittens and then the kitten that we kept was even more attached to us. In fact in the end the mother and son seemed to hate each other but both of them wanted attention from me :p
      • by Mr. Slippery ( 47854 ) <tmsNO@SPAMinfamous.net> on Thursday May 22, 2008 @09:36AM (#23504282) Homepage

        Yep, it would be better just to have two dogs and let them have puppies or something.

        No. It would be better to just adopt a dog. There is a massive overpopulation problem for dogs and cats, with over three million killed in shelters every year for lack of a home.

        Please please please please please please spay or neuter, and don't patronize breeders.

        • We did have that cat neutered after she had the kittens, and the same for her son. It's sad that so many are homeless, but in our case at least, all the kittens found homes (I think there were 7, we kept one, gave another to my uncle who had recently lost his cat when it got run over, and the rest went to my sisters' friends). We got our granny's dog after a year or so because she wasn't able to keep a reign on it, and it wasn't a great experience. He always just would try to get away with whatever he could
    • by wesborgmandvm ( 893569 ) <wesborgman.gmail@com> on Thursday May 22, 2008 @09:06AM (#23503896) Homepage
      Most pet owners have suffered the loss of a very dear and special pet. And while owners would like to keep their dear friend with them forever, very few would actually go so far as to entertain the idea of cloning.

      To most pet lovers, that cherished "once-in-a-lifetime" dog or cat should remain just that. In February of 2004, the AAVS (American Anti-Vivisection Society) commissioned Opinion Research Corporation to conduct a national survey to assess public opinion about cloning pets. Eighty percent of the respondents were not in favor of cloning companion animals or the selling of genetically altered animals as pets. But for the 13% of respondents that are in favor of pet cloning, financial issues may well be the obstacle.

      Genetic Savings & Clone, a gene banking and cloning service for pets, is currently offering to store a treasured pet's genetic material in the hopes that the owner will take advantage of cloning that pet in the future. Currently the cost to "bank" a pet's DNA, or genetic material, with GSC (Genetic Savings & Clone) varies from $295 to $1,395 plus $100-$150 annually for storage fees. The cost for cloning is a different story. According to the GSC website, expect to pay $32,000. And to date they have only been successful with cloning cats.

      Yet, for all of the technology and expense involved, exact replicas of cloned animals are not always produced. In fact, due to unusual genetics, calico cats will rarely produce clones that physically resemble the donor. Cloning opponents contend that an exact replica of a pet is impossible, as training, experience, and environment are keys to an individual's behavior and personality. Even worse animal that have been cloned often have severe health problems, and a short life expectancy.

      The industry is almost totally unregulated and strong opinions on both sides of the cloning issue seek to educate the public about the benefits, or lack thereof, of pet cloning. While tremendous publicity accompanies cloning successes, the public rarely hears about animal cloning failures.

      The greatest publicity surrounds the cloning of pets when actually the majority of cloning is intended for agriculture, biomedical research, and propagation of endangered species. But in all cases, there are potential commercial applications.

      For example, HorseCloning.com will make a clone of your horse for $375,000 per 100 mares implanted plus a patent royalty fee of 15%, based on the estimated value of each clone. According to their web site information, "All sales are final," and "even though no one can guarantee a specific result, you could hit the jackpot." Last but not least, "due to the complexity of the science, results cannot be guaranteed."

      The cloning science is similar in most species, although there are some challenges with the cloning of dogs. Dogs have poorly understood reproductive physiology compared to other species and fewer estrus cycles.

      Basically, the cloning procedure begins with collecting the DNA of the animal to be cloned. The tissue is grown and the cells are preserved while being treated to prevent them from differentiating into a particular cell type (hair, skin, nerve cell).

      Eggs are taken from random females for implantation, and the genetic material from these eggs is removed. Cells and eggs are fused together to become cloned embryos. Surrogate females are then hormonally treated to synchronize their fertile periods and are then implanted with the cloned embryos. In the best scenario, the surrogate pregnancy produces a live, healthy offspring.

      While moral and ethical issues of cloning pets continue to be argued, both sides seem to be closer concerning the problem of endangered species. Betty Dresser, Director of the Audubon Center for Research of Endangered Species in New Orleans says, "Saving habitat may not be enough. Any tool for saving endangered species is important. Cloning is just another reproductive tool, like in-vitro

  • by hyperz69 ( 1226464 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:03AM (#23503258)
    There is no promise your pet is going to be the same pet that left you. To me this spits in the face of nature. Not that I am against cloning, but to think you can bring a loved one... even in part back from the dead is a tragic notion.

    I have seen this stuff before and remember the pet may not even come back looking the same. Even if they got it looking EXACTLY THE SAME, the memories, the personality, the... soul will not be the same.

    All it will do is leave you missing your loved one more. Just let it go, and keep them in your heart. Mittens / Fido will always live on inside you *Yes yes sappy but it's true and you KNOW IT*
    • by oodaloop ( 1229816 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:13AM (#23503324)
      There's also the problem of genotype vs phenotype. Fido's genes may be expressed differently the next go-round, leading to subtle or possibly not-so-subtle differences. And as you intimated, how the clone is raised will be just as important as its genes.

      But Fido could be brought back once we perfect that brain-scanning thingy in the 6th Day movie. Genotype, phenotype, and, uh...brainotype would be so close to the original Fido, that Fido 2.0 would seem almost identical. But without the scanner doohicky, Fido 2.0 will be just another dog.
      • by CastrTroy ( 595695 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:46AM (#23503638) Homepage
        Assuming these are purebred dogs, what's the likelihood that you could just pick up another purebred that would be just as identical? How much genetic variation is there between purebred dogs? Would the differences between the cloned dog and the original be any less noticeable than between the original, and another dog of the same breed, or possibly the same lineage?
      • by mdmkolbe ( 944892 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @09:06AM (#23503904)

        There's also the problem of genotype vs phenotype. Fido's genes may be expressed differently the next go-round, leading to subtle or possibly not-so-subtle differences.

        As an example, I know two women who are identical twins, but because the split was so early, they developed in two different placental sacks (*) which means they don't look like identical twins. They look very similar, but only as much as two sisters might.

        They have the same genes, but their phenotypes are definitely not identical.

        (*) That's how they explained it to me, but I might have misunderstood or misremembered.

      • If we develop brain scanning and want to imitate a Schwarzenegger movie, I want to see a blue sky on Mars!
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Eg0Death ( 1282452 )
      I totally agree with you. As much as I miss Cujo, Gus, and Scratch, I know cloning them won't bring really bring them back. Their respective personalities were formed by the people and events around them. I really wouldn't want to go through housebreaking Cujo again either . . . .
    • I have seen this stuff before and remember the pet may not even come back looking the same. Even if they got it looking EXACTLY THE SAME, the memories, the personality, the... soul will not be the same

      Wasn't that part of the plot of "Pet Sematary"? I would really hate it if the clone is evil!

      • by ejecta ( 1167015 )
        Pet Cemetary was more "Bury dog that's been run down in an ancient indian burial ground only for him to rise from the dead with a serious attitude problem".
        • What were people doing driving around an ancient indian burial ground anyway? >_>
          • by ejecta ( 1167015 )
            Oh, lucky a grammar nazi who's seen the movie wasn't around or I'd be hanging from the rafters!

            I'm missing a comma, it was "...run down, in a...", goes to show one shouldn't be /.ing at midnight.

            Dog was hit on the road out the front of the house, and the ancient indian burial ground was down the backyard. Of course they just bought the house, and didn't notice the spooky burial ground, and naturally the prior owners didn't give them the heads up about the bring-back-the-dead-machine sitting out in the ole '
    • The guy at the store assured me that it would be exactly the same because they'd imprint the memories and personality usingn a special brain scanning machine.

      Have you seen the commercial [youtube.com]?

      Okay...I admit, this is from a movie [imdb.com]. Clearly the idea of cloning our pets is the first one that's really going to sell the technology (other than the obvious - organs).

      Presumably, a lot of instinctive behaviour (if not most) is genetic. So your cloned dog will be a lot more like your old one than a cloned person might be
    • by NMerriam ( 15122 )
      This comment could be subtitled "Everything I Need to Know, I Learned from Pet Semetary"
    • by Shivetya ( 243324 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:33AM (#23503500) Homepage Journal
      Because I was under the impression that cloning did not account for the individuality of each dog's coat. Another thread mentioned the irritability of a cloned bull but I doubt it was due to the cloning.

      When it comes to dogs; my mother breeds, judges, and shows, a certain purebred; the bulk of good dog / bad dog behavior that owners see is largely governed by how much time the puppy had with its mother. Ideally it should be twelve weeks. This is not saying you can't breed in aggressiveness as it had been done to shepherds and the respectable breeders spent a generations (of dogs) trying to get it out.

      The first few weeks in the care of a new owner will set the new puppy on his path to an individual personality. The key to getting a good dog versus a bad dog is : treat it nicely and give it space. If the new dog needs the reassurance of your company it will seek you out. Don't yell at the dog or around it. The pet is looking for acceptance and if you yell at your kids/spouse/tv etc it will affect the dog. About the "space" item, if a dog wants to get away the let it; provided of course its safe. I have seen more than one puppy returned as a nervous wreck to my parents because one kid or adult in the new owner family simply would not let the dog alone, the interesting side story is that these people took their kid to a psychiatrist who basically told them the kid was not mature enough for a pet but they tried anyway . They have their needs for rest too.

      Am I against cloning pets or animals. Not if its used to protect a breed from extinction. I still would not have much qualms about it being done for the end owner. Now if cloning of pets is done for wholesale retail then that I would is nothing better than having mills. Worse is the number of bitches needed and who are basically abused to deliver the pups (I assume it still requires a womb)

      • So basically dogs are a lot like people. Kids raised in houses where the parents are yelling all the time, either at the children, or at eachother, or at whatever, tend to have more emotional problems then those who do not. Also the same holds true with giving children space. Even as babies it is important for their development not to have them in your arms 24 hours a day, let them go off and explore a safe part of the house, and play on their own.
    • Mittens / Fido will always live on inside you *Yes yes sappy but it's true and you KNOW IT*

      The thing is that one of the things that makes life so special is that it is temporary. Why are slasher movies so popular with teenagers on dates? Basically, because it makes the girl (and boy) scared, which in turn makes them feel closer to each other.

      I find our _selective_ emotional attachement to life to be almost amusing. If its cute or looks like us or it has some other kind of emotional attachment (eg, bald e
  • dead puppies (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:07AM (#23503296)
    So how many deformed and killed 'non viable' cloned puppies does it take to produce a successful one.

    (Can you tell I am totally against this.)
  • Not lossless (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ultracool ( 883965 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:10AM (#23503312)
    The cloning process is kind of lossy. A lot of mutations can occur in the process, and as a result the cloned animal is likely to be unhealthy.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by ejecta ( 1167015 )
      Between the loss of genetic material, the DNA process perhaps generating a slightly different gene structure and the different upbringing & environment I think the end result is going to be an animal that brings more sadness than joy if a persons reasons are solely to replace a lost pet.

      I'm honestly struggling to see why someone would really want to clone a domestic animal, even whizz bang rare breed 5.0 would produce better offspring being bred with a similiar stud rather than it's own clone if the per
    • the cloned animal is likely to be unhealthy.
      Just like a pedigree dog then.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by setagllib ( 753300 )
      Regular mating is pretty lossy too. For all we know, advancements in cloning experimentation could lead to improvements in conception safety.

      It may even be the case that we will be able to submit genetic samples from two partners, regardless of gender, and have a technological process create the new genome and begin its gestation. We may even be able to select parameters in the process, such as selecting gender and which traits to inherit.

      I prefer to see this as the next step up for medicine, not as "playin
      • You say only, but weren't the the fundamentalists and conservatives the ones who helped Bush get elected twice? I think they may be a larger group than you are giving them credit. Don't under estimate your enemy :-p

        Anyway, I don't believe that people against cloning are restricted to just those two groups. The fundamentalists and conservatives are just the most verbal about it.

        -For example, someone could be against cloning/gene choosing because it shows the fickleness and shallowness of society, ranking
    • by kellyb9 ( 954229 )
      So what? I lost a few pixels cloning my dog in JPEG... i'm sure they weren't that important.
  • by Optikschmoptik ( 971793 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:13AM (#23503328) Homepage

    I saw them try this with a bull in the first TV episode of This American Life. The results were not good.

    Synopsis: The original bull was nice. The cloned bull was irritable, short-tempered and just not quite right. Also, he kicked the owner in the balls.

    I suppose you could just take from that the irony that the cloned animal managed to block its cloner's own ability to reproduce conventionally. But you could also just note that cloned bull was really ugly. You probably won't get what you wanted, unless you delude yourself into thinking you have it.

    • There goes my fantasy of having Jessica Biel cloned.
    • Synopsis: The original bull was nice. The cloned bull was irritable, short-tempered and just not quite right. Also, he kicked the owner in the balls.

      Hmm. Sounds like my first wife. Glad I didn't get her cloned.
    • by Yvan256 ( 722131 )

      The cloned bull was irritable, short-tempered and just not quite right. Also, he kicked the owner in the balls.
      Did he name it Cartman?

    • by ukemike ( 956477 )
      That was a great bit of TV. The first bull was actually unusually gentle, and had been a tourist attraction and a source of income for the family for years. When it died, the owner convinced people at the local university, who were experimenting with cloning, to make a clone of his beloved bull. The new one didn't kick the owner in the crotch. He gored him, twice. The second time was during the filming of the segment, and the cameras went with him to the hospital. The guy was still convinced that it w
  • I assumed you were just pretending to love the dog to toy with my emotions. Oh, what have I done?
  • The CNN article states "Dogs are arguably the most difficult mammal to clone, according to BioArts."

    More difficult than primates? Why is that?

    • by ejecta ( 1167015 )
      Have you ever tried slotting vials of blood with biocontainment tongs into a centrifugal separator for processing while your leg is being vigorously humped by Fido 1.0?

      That's why.
  • I would rather get another dog and try to make his individual being love and respect me as the old one did and try to love and respect him for what he is. Cloning cheapens the value of the individual existence. The reason why people want copies is so they can forget about the original.
  • Can they clone my Aibo and make it black?
  • This incredible technological advance could be of unparalleled value to people like my neighbor, as well as to certain endangered species. The neighbor owned a horrid little chihuahua that never learned either to shut up or, apparently, to look up.

    We live on a major hawk migration route.

  • Get a Lab (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Doc Ruby ( 173196 ) on Thursday May 22, 2008 @08:57AM (#23503794) Homepage Journal
    A Labrador retriever, that is. They all look more or less exactly the same, and have exactly the same friendly personality.

    Or just brave the wilds of adopting a new random dog. There's already way too many of them for anyone's good, without cloning up more in the world.

    These cloning fees should include a $1000 donation to a programme that neuters 20 other dogs. If we're going to clone biodiversity out of the gene pool, we might as well get aggressive. After all, it's a dog eat dog world.
  • Karma knock or not, it's spelled cemetery.
    • The correct spelling is so, yup. But SK's book spells it otherwise, 'cos the cemetary sign in the book was handwritten by kids who couldn't spell...

      OTOH, the lead for this piece writes "If you recall there was a 're-pet' cloning service to get your dog back if you ever lost them." which isn't true. The euphemism "lost" for "died" is confuses the tale.

      Ain't pedantry fun?
      • 1) Don't start a sentence with a conjunction.
        2) Cemetery. Again.
        3) "Ain't" is not in the English language. The contraction "Isn't" would be more suitable.

        Yes, it is!
  • I have a rudimentary understanding of genetics, but I understand that telomeres are shortened with each cell division, and when they run out, no more cell division can occur. Essentially this is "old age". When an old dog is cloned, how long will the cloned puppy live? Until the telomeres can be lengthened before the initial cell division begins in the new lifeform, this seems like a cruel service. When we figure out how to lengthen telomeres in dogs, then we've pretty much got longevity treatments for h
  • This is a serious question: Imagine you had an old or ailing pet, and you loved them very much indeed, and so when they died you wanted to maintain the (infinitesimally slim) possibility that the pet could be successfully cloned sometime in the future.

    What would you need of the pet's... remains... in order to produce a successful clone? Fur? Saliva? Blood cells? Seriously, I'm asking.
  • ...will some of them turn out really dumb? [imdb.com]

    But seriously, I think some people with more money than brains are going to extremely disappointed with the results. A cat cloned at Texas A&M [cbsnews.com] didn't look any more like the mother than a normally bred kitten would. It also had a totally different personality--which most people wanting a clone of a particular pet would be to get the identical personality. Clones at this stage are not carbon copies--I suspect there's a lot more to the breakdown of the genome than
  • On the first episode of the This American Life tv show they covered the story of what happened when people tried to clone a very docile bull [thisamericanlife.org]. Let's just say that one of the owners ended up in the hospital after the cloned bull gored him. (This story originally aired on the radio show [thisamericanlife.org])

    I'm willing to bet that the people who get these cloned pets won't get what they bargained for.
  • All I want (Score:2, Interesting)

    by xrobertcmx ( 802547 )
    Is a dog with a much longer lifespan. I really don't like to think that my little dog will only live 13 to 17 years, but a friend of mines bird will probably out live all of us 30 somethings.

To do two things at once is to do neither. -- Publilius Syrus