Thanks to our pals over at The Daley Gator for the linkback! If you don’t look at that site daily (or Daley) you should.
Moving right along: Apparently folks in China have cloned twenty different breeds of dogs, and they claim humans are next. Excerpt:
A 12-year-old schnauzer has become the latest canine to undergo the process, which involves taking a skin sample from the animal.
Wang Yinqing, who is the dog’s owner, showed off the puppy to its “father clone” name Doudou in a recently-released snap.
However, despite the dogs having the identical DNA, scientists have said they may have a different temperament as this is shaped by its upbringing.
According to Chinese news, there have now been 200 different types of dog cloned in the country.
And last month, the world came closer to carrying out mass human cloning.
Japanese experts revealed they made human egg cells from blood using a cutting-edge stem cell testing technique.
Although these eggs cannot be grown into babies as they are too immature, the research is paving the way for this type of experiment.
Now I will confess when I saw this article, my first thought was “Is there suddenly some shortage of people in China?” It doesn’t seem like they’re desperate enough for population to start cloning, although I seem to remember that Russia has a pretty significant demographic problem; maybe China could sell them some cloning clinics.
Back to dogs.
I had a dog in a million once. Gypsy was an English Springer Spaniel of the field strain, a long-legged, rangy, fast, tough dog, small enough to share a pickup cab easily with her owner (45 pounds or so) but big enough to retrieve big pheasants and mountain grouse.
She died in 1999. I cut my elk hunt short that year to rush home and spend Gyp’s last few hours with her. I loved that dog.
Would I have cloned her, had the technology existed then? No.
I know this is becoming a vanity thing, cloning a beloved pet, but as even the article above notes, the cloned animal won’t be a duplicate. You can’t step into the same river twice, and you can’t exactly reproduce a good gun dog by cloning; the unique combination of genetics and environment will never be exactly the same.
I’d rather remember Gyp the way she was, and when the time comes when I can give up my semi-nomadic existence and have another gun dog, I’ll get another dog entirely.
China can keep their clones.