No Pet Cloning

Despite the fact that an overwhelming 80 percent of the public is opposed to cloning companion animals such as cats and dogs, companies still try on occasion to make a business out of selling cloned pets. These pet cloning companies exploit the grief people experience over the loss of a beloved companion animal, leading them to believe that deceased pets can be ‘resurrected’ through new cloning technology.

However, there is no assurance that a cloned animal will resemble the original physically, let alone in terms of behavior or personality. In addition, more than 96 percent of cloning attempts fail, and according to the CEO of one pet cloning company, 15-45 percent of cloned cats who are born alive will die within 30 days.[1] The Roslin Institute, where Dolly was cloned, posted a statement against pet cloning on its website stating, "...the supposed benefit of cloning a pet is an illusion and the harm to the other animals involved would be real…"[2]

Yet pet cloning companies that sell companion animals to the public are not automatically regulated by the USDA under the Animal Welfare Act (AWA). For example, only dealers that sell animals wholesale are regulated by the USDA. A company that sells animals retail to individuals does not fall under the AWA, and the USDA does not require companies that produce cloned pets to register as research facilities. Thus, these companies are not governed by the USDA’s regulations covering the humane care and treatment of animals in laboratoties, and as a result, no one outside of the labs knows the conditions faced by animals who were part of failed cloning attempts.

While pet cloning companies are charging customers up to $150,000 for a cloned pet, millions of homeless animals of the same species are available in U.S. animal shelters for around $100. Unfortunately, most of these animals are euthanized for lack of adopting homes.

With our No Pet Cloning campaign, AAVS is educating the public about the animal suffering and ethical concerns caused by cloning companion animals and is seeking regulation of cloning activities. We succeeded in getting the only U.S. company that sold cloned animals, Genetic Savings & Clone, Inc., to close its doors, and we will continue to oppose the efforts of other pet cloning companies to exploit animals and people alike.

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References:

[1] "First Cloned Cat Sold in U.S." Associated Press, 12/23/04.

[2] "Cloning of Pets." Roslin Institute, 8/12/02.
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