A YORKSHIRE couple who flew to South Korea to have their dead dog cloned have said they “cannot wait” to bring their two new puppies home with them.
Laura Jacques and Richard Remde went ahead with the £67,000 procedure to clone Ms Jacques’s much-loved boxer Dylan after he died last year with a brain tumour.
She took cells from Dylan and sent them to the South Korean Sooam Biotech Research Foundation in Seoul, where his DNA was extracted to produce two identical puppies.
The puppies, named Chance and Shadow, will need to spend seven months in quarantine with the foundation before the North Yorkshire couple can bring them home. They plan on making several trips to visit them.
Mr Remde told Sky News: “The puppies are doing really well. It has been money well spent and we cannot wait to get them home.”
Sooam has created more than 700 dogs, despite criticism of pet cloning by a number of organisations, including the RSPCA. The procedure, plus the trips to South Korea, will cost the couple well over £70,000.
Ms Jacques said: “Dylan was such a special dog - he was my first dog and I had him all through my 20s. We lost him unexpectedly. He was given six to 18 months to live, within 19 days he died.
“We found out we could freeze DNA and that was our intention, but it turned out his cells weren’t strong enough so we went ahead with the clone.”
Despite wanting her new dogs to have similar physical traits to Dylan, Ms Jacques said she did not want them to replace him in personality.
She continued: “I don’t think they will have the same personality - they would have to live every day the same life that Dylan lived.
“Mine and Dylan’s bond was special to us. This is a reminder of him, so I have still got a piece of Dylan, for his memory to live on. I wouldn’t dream of calling either of them Dylan.
“Other people might choose to spend their money on different things but this is how we have chosen to spend ours.”