Family Pays $155,000 to Clone Beloved Pet

Pets are beloved family members and having one pass away is a devastating moment. Earlier this year, TLC aired a moving one-hour special documenting animal lovers who had the opportunity to bring a deceased dog back into their life.  Now that the procedure to attain an exact clone of a pet dog has become available, the idea that someone can immortalize their furry loved one has become an attainable opportunity – but at a cost.

Beverly Hills cosmetic surgeon George Semel has been keeping his patients supplied with nips, tucks and fillers for forty years. George’s life used to revolve around work, and then he met a malnourished Chihuahua named Bob who changed everything.

What started out as a doctor/patient relationship soon grew into a mutual love that lasted for two and a half years. In the summer of 2011, while on a walk, a Rottweiler attacked Bob, resulting in his immediate death.  Grief stricken, and plagued with guilt, George decided he will do whatever it takes to bring Bob back to life.

Across town, Los Angelino Myra still struggles with the loss of her dog Kabuki, who passed three years ago. Myra keeps his memory alive every way she can – surrounding herself with mementoes of her beloved pet for sentimental reasons. She has managed to save almost half the cash she needs to clone Kabuki, but money isn’t the only obstacle to their reunion. Myra now has a boyfriend in her life, and knowing that a cloned Kabuki would be her top priority, she has to make the tough decision between human love and cloned love.

Edgar and Nina Otto from Boca Raton, Florida will spare no expense to keep their pet’s memory alive. Edgar’s father was one of the founders of NASCAR, and successful business ventures have made the Ottos multi-millionaires. Thanks to their wealth, the Ottos can lavish money on their greatest passion- animals. The best pet they ever had was a golden Labrador retriever named Sir Lancelot. In 2003, the Ottos had a sample of his DNA taken and stored. At the time, a dog had never been successfully cloned, but Edgar and Nina hoped that one day it would be possible.  In November 2008 after Lancelot’s passing from cancer, they were one of the first families to be able to produce a successful clone for the hefty price tag of $155,000.

TLC will air a second installment of I CLONED MY PET with three new compelling pet cloning stories on Monday, May 21stat 10PM ET/PT.





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409 comments

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    May 10, 2012 7:05 amPosted 2 years ago
    Anonymous

    There are so many great dogs out there without a home. This is really unnecessary. I know that when my dog passes on that she would want me to get another rescue dog as she knows what it is like to be rescued from very horrible conditions.

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      May 10, 2012 11:30 amPosted 2 years ago
      Cheryl F

      We all can identify with losing a deeply loved pet, but that’s exactly my reaction to this story – why not visit a shelter and save a dog’s life instead of trying to pretend cloning is actually bringing their former pet back to life? There are many millions of animals living in cages who dearly need the love and care these people could give them. Why let a dog go to its death while spending tens of thousands to clone an animal who has already passed the rainbow bridge.

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    May 10, 2012 11:28 amPosted 2 years ago
    Jane A

    Ok I am going to be a jerk. But this is so wrong. Just imagine how many shelter dogs could be fed and healed for $155k. Donate it in honor of your dog that passed..that will ensure that he lives on and on by saving so many other dogs.

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    May 10, 2012 2:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Sue

    As much as I love my poodle Petey, I know there would never be another just like him. I would use that money if I had it,to rescue others,and find them the good homes they all deserve.

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    May 10, 2012 6:07 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Dennis

    We lost our little doggie last year after 16yrs. We loved him deeply. Even so I would never try this, because it is doomed to failure. The dog they (and I) remember was both the product of genetics and his environment. Who is to say that they remember him as a puppy or that in the absence of the exact same set of circumstances and environment, whether or not the same behaviors would develop.

    For us, in the end we waited a year, then we contacted a Pekingese rescue agency and we are adopting an 8yr old dog that has a similar personality-only calmer but a different coloration as no dog will ever replace our old dog-nor would I ask it too. He will be his own dog and our dog. $155K could have done so much good for so many others, human and canine alike

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    May 10, 2012 6:16 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Ann

    NO!!

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    May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Glenda

    no!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Shannon

    Yes I would.

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    May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Trudy

    too freaky for me

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    May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Cindy

    YES

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  • May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Ashley

    wow! that would be a tough one…

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    May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Dianne

    YES!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Patrice

    not for that much – ever.

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  • May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Vanessa

    me too!!

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    May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Veronica

    Never !!!

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    May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Beto

    In a minute!

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    May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Carolyn

    No way

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    May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Jen

    I’m seeing that Family Guy episode when Stewie makes a clone of himself and Brian. It didn’t turn out well.

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    May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Lisa

    Hell no :) I love that every dog I have rescued has had their own unique personality and place in my heart!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Jacob

    why when there are too many good dogs in rescue shelters who need good homes… stupid waste of money.

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  • May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Melissa

    gotta start savin up now. lol :(

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    May 10, 2012 6:17 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Roxanne

    Absolutely. I love my boy.

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  • May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Robin

    no

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Carolyn

    Some things are better not messed with

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Josh

    Yes I would!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Ashley

    As the animal would genetically be the same….the behavior will completely different

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Stefanie

    no! because the charakter would never be the same

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Trisha

    I currently have purebreds, a rescue, cats, and have fostered many different dogs. They are all wonderful in their own way, so I wouldn’t clone- but I would never be without one just because I felt more of a ‘connection’ with one over another. I love them all.

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Gaily

    No. THe personality will never be the same, and it’ll never be the same dog, no matter how much you want the clone to be!

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Pauline

    No, wouldn’t be the same… just wrong!!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Patricia

    No!

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Kathryn

    Never!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Melinda

    Uh, no.

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Betsy

    can’t clone experience….would only be a constant reminder of lost pet ~ so NO I wouldn’t

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Rhonda

    YES, by all means I would clone my “LEXI” BOXER <3

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    June

    no

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Selena

    Hell, no! There are breeders I can go to and shelters to rescue from! How utterly selfish and a waste of money!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Spencer

    Haha, I can think of a few more things to do with $155k, than clone my dead dog! That’s a lot of cash!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Mary Ann

    Depends…..most likely yes!

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Sharon

    In a heartbeat.

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    May 10, 2012 6:18 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Jimmie

    No. Because I would know that no matter what it’s not the same dog.

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    May 10, 2012 6:19 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Ellen

    Can’t clone a soul or a personailty! I love my dog so much, and he’s a handsome lab…BUT it’s his heart that I love so much!

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    May 10, 2012 6:19 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Lisa

    Hope they relise it will look the same but different personalities. Bad mistake

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  • May 10, 2012 6:19 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Wanda

    I can’t begin to imagine how many existing, homeless dogs could have been saved with $150K, Only in a country of so much wealth and ‘wants’ can something like this happen without batting an eye.

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    May 10, 2012 6:19 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Patricia

    i dont know why u wouldnt just adopt a new one and donate all that money u were gonna spend on an animal that really isnt the same animal as the first.. strange

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    May 10, 2012 6:19 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Rita

    NO

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    May 10, 2012 6:19 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Perry

    No. There are too many animals out there that need a good, loving home as it is! Just think how much that money could help shelters and rescues save thousands of animals…

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  • May 10, 2012 6:19 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Wanda

    No,I would remember my beloved dog by trying to save others with all that money!

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    May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Jenny

    no, there are enough animals in this world who are homeless and unloved without “bringing back” your pet!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Myron

    Mum sure loves me but this would never be an option, even if we had the money!

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    May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Nicole

    No.

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    Reply
  • May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Linda

    No.

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    Reply
  • May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Shaun

    U never really end up with the same pet but yes I would! lol

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    May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Marisa

    No, you born, you live and you die and thats just nature.

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    May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Janet

    No. I would not. The dog might LOOK the same, but it is NOT the same spirit; hence, not the same dog.

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    May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Heather

    I understand the attachment, but not when so many other amazing dogs and cats die because they have no homes. That money could save a lot of lives!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Dolores

    OMG…..

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    May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Shelley

    No! Wouldn’t $155,000 donation to animal rescue and adopting a new mutt from the pound be a far better way to celebrate the life of your beloved perfect dog?

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    May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Jilly

    One may be able to clone a body, but one cannot clone a soul.

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    May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Kimberly

    No! Rescue a shelter dog and fall in love all over again !

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    May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Gummi

    in a heartbeat!

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    May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Jan

    Nope, would not be the same.

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  • May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Sherrill

    that is stupid. They might not even come out looking the same. Genes have a mind of there own .

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    May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Melissa

    no …how disrespectful

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  • May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Angie

    That’s a tough questions?? Not sure

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    Reply
  • May 10, 2012 6:20 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Cheryl

    i have loved all my dogs and each of them that has passed i still miss like crazy but clone one… NEVER…

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Brittany

    Yes yes yes! I would try it.

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  • May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Mark

    Nope & NEVER!! They are a 1 time gift from the man upstairs. I will see mine again when i get to cross Rainbow Bridge and the Lord and my four Legged friends are waiting for me on the Other Side!!

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Kim

    Nope!

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Beth

    Nope, because the clone would be nothing like the original, experiences really do help mold the personality. Plus, if I remember correctly, a clone’s cells wind up being the same age as the original was when the samples were taken, so you really don’t get a full extra lifetime with the pup anyways

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Brian

    How many unwanted and neglected pets would that money have been a better help to? Spend that money to help those pets that are in need.

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  • May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Dan

    Hell to the naw! I saw Pet Sematary

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Danielle

    ADOPT. Adopt adopt adopt. ADOPT. Don’t breed, buy, or CLONE while homeless pets DIE!!!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Lisa

    Rescue!!!

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Dionissios

    No, I don’t like. A beloved dog is unique.

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Jan

    Absolutely, positively…. NO… Not just NO… HELL NO!!!

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Mike

    nope. There is only one Max. I couldn’t love a clone.

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Erin

    The dog may look the same, but it won’t be just like the old dog. It’s hard enough not to expect a new pup to be like your old dog when it isn’t “the same dog” — it’s not fair to put that expectation on a new dog.

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  • May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Ronald

    no. Too many abandoned creatures (human and animal) out there that could use the money!

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  • May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Paula

    NO.. to the question would I clone my pet.

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Lori

    NOOOOOO!!!!

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Suzanne

    No.

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Kimberley

    No every animal is different and unique

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Mike

    Joseph Caruana

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    May 10, 2012 6:21 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Barbara

    Uhhh…no…..its not nice to mess with Mother Nature….

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    Reply
  • May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Jules

    No, I couldn’t imagine it being the right thing to do at all x

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  • May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Elizabeth

    Look at how many rescues that would care for. Sheesh.

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  • May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Jade

    No. I don’t think it is healthy to not properly grieve your pet. I saw a show about people getting their pets cloned and they actually think its their same dog; same personality, same memories, etc. Plus with so many homeless deserving dogs out there I think its only right to adopt a different dog and honor the memory of your late pet by donating in their name or something.

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    May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Andrea

    Not a chance. My fur-babies are one of a kind. Besides, don’t you guys read Steven King? Scarey!

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    May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Joseph

    Nope!

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    May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Louise

    No. I loved my previous dog & I will always remember him as he was so
    Most definitely wouldn’t want another version of him. Nothing & nobody should be cloned!!!

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    May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Jason

    They should realize it will never bring the exact same dog back and instead donated the money to rescues.

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    May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Karen

    I would be tempted, but I would have to remind myself of all the other wonderful, loving pets that are being killed on a daily basis because they don’t have a home to call their own … and $155k would go a long way to save a good number of them!

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    May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Nuria

    No. It would not be the same soul, or essence. Just an exact twin, but I doubt the personality would be the same. Give a homeless animal your love and keep your memories.

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    May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Matthew

    Agreed. There are too many loving dogs looking for homes. Why waste money when you can feel good rescuing one just as worthy as your old one.

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  • May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Hiking

    Yes.

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    May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Jo

    A clone would still not be the same dog… cat… whatever and there are just way too many animals that need rescuing to do that.

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    May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    David

    No, give another pet a chance at the same Loving Life you gave your passed Pet!

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    May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Kate

    No, As much as it would break my heart..no.

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    May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Bijou

    that money could help so many pets in shelters :(

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  • May 10, 2012 6:22 pmPosted 2 years ago
    Greg

    Absolutely not. There are too many deserving animals in need of a home. Besides, they are going to be very disappointed in the outcome. Their cloned dog is going to be a different animal, with a unique personality. It will simply look the same as the other one. All of us, human and animal, have personalities that are largely influenced by our experiences. The clone will not be the original, it’ll just look the same.

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