For the love of her furry Chihuahua dog, a Bel Air woman parted with $50,000 as cost of cloning her dog. She paid the money to a Texas animal cloning company.
In October, Bruce Wayne, the dog, gave birth to five genetically identical puppies. Four of the puppies were taken by Meesha Kauffman, the owner of Bruce, while the fifth lives with Kauffman’s friend in Baltimore.
Source: “Heather Bellini” via Baltimore Sun
The arrival of the five dogs necessitated a lifestyle change. But above all, the joy of having five dogs is overwhelming, and Kauffman said she couldn’t imagine parting with any of the five puppies at the moment.
ViaGen is the only US company that clones dogs and livestock, Melain Rodriguez, a manager with the company said. Over 100 pets have been cloned since ViaGen expanded its services to include pet cloning in 2016.
The company, an affiliate of Gaithersburg biotechnology firm Intrexon, had been cloning livestock before the expansion. According to Rodriguez, over half of the cloned pets are dogs.
Initially, according to Rodriguez, the company had cloned cats, and therefore chihuahua pups are not the first cloned pets living in Maryland.
Cloning has become a widespread practice since Barbra Streisand; a renowned singer announced in February that her dog called Samantha, which had died recently had been cloned.
This is in spite of the high cost of cloning, which stands at $50,000 and $25,000 for a dog and a cat, respectively. At the moment, according to Rodriguez, cloning is in extremely high demand, and the list of waiting for customers is ever-growing.
Continue to page 2 to hear about the cloning of Dolly, the lamb.