How much is that doggie in the window?

Seven cloned sniffer dogs are now training in South Korea. These are Labrador puppies cloned from a good sniffer dog, with the aim of upping the current 30% of dogs that can do the job well to a notional 90%.

In my ignorance, I would imagine you could just breed three times as many dogs if you wanted three times as many dogs with good smelling skills. Dog breeding costs, erm, nothing, done the natural way. OK. maybe it does have a cost, in practice, given that pedigree dogs can cost a few hundred pounds.

How much do these cloned dogs cost?

The state-funded project cost about 300m won ($300,000; £150,000) (from the BBC).

In a slightly older BBC story, it was reported that an American woman is paying a South Korean dog-cloning company £76,000 to clone her pet pit bull. Well, it looks as if she’s getting ripped off compared to S Korean customs, who are paying about £21,429 for each dog, but then her pet was dead before it got cloned ….

So, here we have 8 dogs that cost £226,000. I could round up twice that many – most of them pit bulls – from my street (and I’m sure they’d happily breed a few dozen more for free.)   It’s not as if dogs are an endangered species. In fact, the local pound puts many times that number to death every day. Hardly money wisely spent in terms of pound of dog flesh per pound.

Do we have to have Brave New World as well as 1984? I really do prefer my dystopian novels to be literature rather than social blueprints.

2 thoughts on “How much is that doggie in the window?

  1. OK, but how many of those cheap dogs will be great sniffers? What would the overall cost of breeding, housing, feeding, testing, and training those dogs over the number of dogs that will come out above average sniffers? The point of the ROK program is to produce a maximum ratio of good sniffing dogs.

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