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Dog owners warned against cloning

Tuesday July 5th 2016

Dog cloning cannot bring back pet owners' beloved animals nor guarantee exact replicas, the scientist behind Dolly the pioneering sheep has warned.

Professor Ian Wilmut believes keepers would be disappointed with the result.

Sir Ian says that even genetically identical cats or dogs would not retain the uniqueness of the original animal. He says different nurturing would bring different personalities and foetal development cell movement would lead to a different appearance.

Going to pet shops for replacement dogs are equal alternatives to getting clones, the professor claims. His comments come two years after "Mini-Winnie" became the UK's first cloned mutt in a procedure which would normally have cost £60,000.

South Korean scientists copied the dachshund from her 12-year-old "mother" for Rebecca Smith, who won a competition to secure the cloning for nothing.

Prof Wilmut headed the Edinburgh University research team behind Dolly 20 years ago on Tuesday (July 5). No other mammal had ever been cloned from one single adult cell before then.

Copyright Press Association 2016