(January 15, 2010) The American Anti-Vivisection Society (AAVS) condemns the recent news
that, through a court-ordered settlement, South Korean company RNL Bio Co, Ltd has amassed exclusive rights to clone dogs using various experimental techniques and will attempt to market cloned dogs globally. It also claims that it will open a dog cloning research center this April.
Despite several attempts by U.S. companies, pet cloning has failed to be successful, due largely in part to its deleterious effects on the animals used in the cloning laboratories. Indeed, concerns about animal welfare are among the reasons why one U.S. pet cloning company operating in South Korea shut down. According to the company’s CEO
, surrogate dogs who are forced to be impregnated with cloned embryos and used to give birth to the cloned puppies in a laboratory may wind up being slaughtered for food. Furthermore, many cloned puppies, if they survive birth, suffer serious medical conditions, and/or do not have the desired physical appearance. In some cases, multiple puppies were born through cloning, but only one cloned dog was sought, leaving the lab with a ‘surplus’ of unwanted dogs.
AAVS has continually sought to educate the public about our strong concerns about animal cloning. We view the latest news not as progress, but an expansion of a fringe industry that has been well-characterized as inhumane and controversial.
There does not appear to be a strong law regarding the use of animal in laboratories in South Korea, and therefore, these experiments will continue to proceed largely, if not, totally unregulated. We urge pet lovers and the media to not be duped by false promises and quirky news stories and to consider the ethical ramifications of such endeavors.