"SAN FRANCISCO The fur is flying in California as critics spar over a Bay Area company that charges $32,000 to clone an owner's cat. "
My personal opinion is that this service is a waste of money. I do not believe the ethical boundaries we apply to humans are applicable to animals. In areas of using animals as test subjects for research, I feel that since they are not humans you can pretty much do anything you want in the name of research, as long as you have some oversight, though I probably would not buy products (like shampoo that were tested on animals). I do not support animal abuse, not because I feel animals are similar in status to humans, but because I think that kindness to animals is a trait that carries over into other areas of you life. Also, I feel that once you accept responsibility to care for an animal, you have made a contract between the animal and you. One in which another life is entirely reliant on you, and you are honor bound to fulfill.
This service is not cloning humans and they are not abusing animals. In fact, I am willing to bet that the animals they are creating will be better treated than the average animal.
"But some groups say the practice is questionable and the company is playing on the emotions of bereaved pet owners. They also say the procedure is reprehensible since so many cats that could be adopted are put to sleep every year."
The critics are grasping for straws. The are worrying about the humans and the animals which were not chosen to be pets. First, the people who can afford to have their favorite cat cloned are not going to go down to the animal shelter and pick one out. Secondly, if they are in fact "playing with the emotions of bereaved pet owners" they will probably either get sued by their wealthy clients (who have more money than sense) or word of mouth will get out and the company will tank.
"We don't know how long these animals will live or if they will have health consequences as a result of cloning ... And so you could have people that have broken hearts, and down the line, this animal, who they have put so much money into and feel so strongly about, who knows what could happen with them," said Crystal Miller-Spiegel of the American Anti-Vivisection Society"
Well I guess the only way to find out is by cloning a few thousand and see what happens.
If I had kids and our favorite dog died and this service was affordable, I probably would not get the animal cloned. I would use it as an chance to teach my children about death (because none of use are getting our of this life alive), then I would make them watch "Pet Cemetery".