Barbara Streisand did it after the death of her beloved dog Sammie and now a Florida-based woman has followed in her footsteps, cloning her dog in a move that has cost her a jaw-dropping $50,000.
Francesca Geertsma was devastated when her dog Osa died in 2019 from canine cognitive disorder, often referred to as doggy dementia. Feeling bereft and unable to say goodbye, Geertsma reached out to a company that specializes in pet cloning.
"The thought of losing such an amazing dog was so unthinkable to me and I decided to revisit the idea of cloning only a few months before her death,” Geertsma explains.
While Geertsma wanted nothing more than a dog that was just like Osa, she also knew it wasn’t going to be easy, after all, her beautiful Osa was known as a ‘super mutt’ consisting of five different breeds. The chances of finding such a dog naturally were slim, which is why she turned to cloning.
And she’s glad she did because just 18 months after Osa died, Geertsma became the proud pet parent to three beautiful puppies, each genetically identical clones of Osa who were grown from cells that were taken from her much-loved pup just before she died.
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"I'm so happy – they are identical to my Osa in appearance,” she said of her three new pups which she has namedOsana, Osaki and Osani. "Our girls are a joy. They are Osa and more to me now.”
Pet cloning has become more popular in recent years, but it’s not cheap. It’s estimated to cost around $30,000 to clone a cat and $50,000 to clone a dog and it’s not without its controversy either, with animal rights groups saying it increases the risk of disease.
And yet Geertsma wouldn’t change a thing, saying that her new pups were worth every penny of the $50,000 that she spent. "They are of course different from [Osa] in many ways," she says of her three fur babies, "but when you least expect it, a little mannerism you had forgotten about shows up."
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Kathryn is a freelance writer who has spent the past two years dividing her writing time between her two great loves - pets and health and wellness. When she’s not busy crafting the perfect sentence for her features, buying guides and news pieces, she can be found hanging out with one very mischievous Cocker Spaniel, drinking copious amounts of Jasmine tea and attempting to set numerous world records for the longest ever FaceTime calls with her family back home in NZ.
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