ViaGen Pets claims it can clone your pet dog or cat for $50,000.
“For more than 15 years, ViaGen has been cloning livestock. They have cloned thousands of cattle, more than 250 horses, and thousands of pigs and sheep, too,” reported CBS Pittsburgh on Monday. “Two years ago, they starting doing dogs and cats.”
In their report, CBS Pittsburgh met a toy poodle named Baxter that is reportedly a clone.
“People have a hard time wrapping their brain around that it that it is a real technology,” proclaimed ViaGen Pets Client Services Manager, Melain Rodriguez. “That it is not science fiction. It’s not like what you see on TV or in the movies.”
“The dog that you are going to clone is not going to be a Frankenstein. [Baxter] is just a normal dog like any other dog. You would never know that he’s a cloned puppy,” Rodriguez continued. “We like to say a genetic twin just born at a different time.”
The process, which requires those interested to join a waiting list, costs $50,000, and a cloned puppy can be returned to the customer within six to seven months.
ViaGen President of Science and Technology, Shawn Walker, claimed he “would have probably never thought about cloning a pet 10 years ago.”
“I was in the livestock world. Now, my biggest regret is that we had one dog that we connected to, and I’d love to bring it back,” Walker explained. “Someone made the statement that one of the most amazing things about a clone is they are just an animal. There’s no way to tell.”
According to CBS Philadelphia, “Cloning starts when your vet takes four small skin samples from your pet. It is a simple procedure. Most dogs go home the same day. Some owners choose to have it done when their dog is already under anesthesia for something as routine as a dental cleaning.”
“It takes no special training for a vet to start the cloning process. The vet simply is taking a small sample with an instrument and then putting a single stitch to close the small wound,” they declared. “The biopsy taken by the vet is sent to the ViaGen lab in Texas.”
“Next, the cells from you dog are put into a donor egg cell. ViaGen replaces the nucleus of the egg with the DNA from your pet,” the report explains. “Then, the egg is put in a surrogate dog. The surrogate is chosen based on size, previous experience as a mom and for her ability to care for the puppies.”
It doesn’t matter whether the pet has a disease, such as cancer, as it can still be cloned into a healthy animal.
However, “It’s not a re-incarnation of their pet,” warned Rodriguez. “It’s not that same pet born over again, but it’s those same genetics and this little piece of this pet that they loved so much is somehow back in their life again.”