Michelle Mazur: Cloning pets not for me

Many pet owners are unwilling to let go of their elderly pets, even once the pet has passed away.  Now they don’t have to.

BioArts International is behind a project called Best Friends Again where they’ve developed a commercial method to clone dogs.  They’ve launched a “Golden Clone Giveaway,” in which owners send in a 500-word essay about why their dog would be the best dog to be cloned.  The winner will be chosen June 30th, and their pet will be cloned for free.

I work at a local vet clinic in Wichita, Kansas, and most clients I talk with say they would be delighted to have the chance to clone their beloved dog.  Not me. Cloned pets can come with a ton of medical problems, and there’s a pretty good chance that they won’t have the same personality at the original dog.  There’s no guarantee that cloned Fluffy will be as good as original Fluffy, and may leave an even larger hole in the owner’s heart.  I can’t imagine going through the heartbreak of cloning my dog, Joey.  Yes, I said heartbreak.

Joey is a six-year-old West Highland white terrier.  This breed is well known for being prone to allergies, however Joey is completely without.  He is incredibly healthy and happy; I really couldn’t ask for a better dog.  But once he passes away, I plan to act like a normal person and cope with my grief.  Coping will not include sending a DNA sample to Best Friends Again in California.  Most likely, I would be sent a rambunctious little devil that bears no similarities to Joey, other than physical appearance.  This terror dog will quickly ruin any memories of Joey that I had.

I can’t imagine a more perfect dog to be cloned than Joey, but I’ll save my money and tears and instead adopt one of the many thousands of dogs at animals shelters all across the nation.