Woman pays £19,000 to clone cat - but new pet is totally different

A WOMAN in the United States has paid £19,000 to clone her cat, only to find the new one is very different from the original.

Belle the Cat

Ms Anderson paid £19k to clone her old cat (Image: Instrgram) Sign up for FREE for latest news plus tips to save money and the environment Invalid email

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Kelly Anderson said she “couldn’t be happier” with the decision, however, has received stern criticism from an animal rights group. Although rare, Ms Anderson’s pet is not the first animal to be cloned, with Dolly the sheep in Britain becoming the first in 1996. Ms Anderson lost her original feline friend Chai in March 2017.

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Speaking of her ordeal after the death of her cat, who had been ill, Ms Anderson said: "I couldn't sleep that night.

"I just remembered having a conversation with my roommate, who's a vet tech, at some point that night about cloning.”

Speaking to The Sun, the pet owner said: "I started doing a lot of research and looked into ViaGen a lot.“I called them the second they opened the next morning, and the process from there was basically getting my vet to work with them to get a skin biopsy from Chai."4 years on, Ms Anderson enjoys the company of her new pet cat named Belle.In spite of the complicated cloning process, although identical in appearance to her genetic predecessor, Belle is a very different animal.

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Belle and Chai

Belle is a clone of original cat Chai (Image: Instagram)

ViaGen, the company behind the cloning told The Sun it guarantees they'll look identical but the animals will develop their own personality based on external factors.

It said: “Those factors include how many animals are in the house, what the animal is being fed, how the cat is raised, among dozens of other nature-versus-nurture impacts.”

Ms Anderson said Belle's personality "is completely different" from Chai.

She said: "They have some baseline personalities that are a little similar.

“Like they're very bold, sassy, cats, but that could be the breed.

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“But Belle is a totally new cat."

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Chai the cat had skin cells removed in a biopsy to clone the animal (Image: Instagram)


4 years on, Belle is a perfect clone of Chai (Image: Instagram)

Ms Anderson has also adopted other animals.

Speaking of Belle, she said: “She’s the troublemaker.

"I have all my other cats who are between three and almost 13.

“This is my oldest.

"They're all pretty chill, and then there's Belle.

"She's a kitten and she wants to play all the time.

“She's really rambunctious like any other six-month-old kitten.

“She's very affectionate and inquisitive and just bold. She has no fear at all she loves going out to new places.

Keep a pet-friendly home. Your dog or cat is a part of the family. If she’s a kitty, she needs her own litter box in a quiet, out-of-the way corner, a scratching post or tree, her own toys, and a nice cozy spot for napping.

"I bring her outside or to breweries.

“She loves exploring and meeting other animals"

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PETA have condemned the cloning, saying pet owners should concentrate on adopting pets instead (Image: Getty)


PETA said in an email to Ms Anderson she has an "enormous amount of influence and we are desperate to help shelters ... and to not create a cloning trend.

"Your promotion directly and adversely affects the lives of other cats - those who are sitting in shelters waiting for a family.”

Other opponents compare cloning to a high-tech puppy mill.

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Ms Anderson, who works with and trains animals for a living, shared a few of her accomplishments and when she worked with PETA on campaigns.

The cat owner said: "I appreciate your concern but it is very misplaced. And your data is misinformed.

“Cloning does not affect the cats in shelters at all.”

Is cloning pets ethically correct? Would you do the same to your pets, at that price? Where is the line drawn... will relatives and loved ones be next? Let us know what you think about this delicate subject by CLICKING HERE and joining the debate in our comments section below - Every Voice Matters!

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Dolly the Sheep

Dolly the Sheep was the first cloned animal in 1996 (Image: Getty)

She said she has fostered over 100 cats and always has adopted, but losing Chai at five years old was a crushing blow in her life.

Ms Anderson ended by saying: "There was just something special and different about Chai.

“I don't know really, I can't put it into words. She was just that pet for me.

“I've never had a pet like her. And I wanted to carry on a piece of her."

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