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Speaking of Clones..

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  • Speaking of Clones..

    While looking on the web to see if I could find any cloned horses that actually had performance records, ( I couldn't find any but that doesn't mean that there are none),I came across this article on the Sidelines site. "Duplicating Greatness, Clones and Sporthorse Breeding". I hadn't realized that the H/J folks were cloning as well. I'm sorry again , can't remember how to post the link.. Google works though.. Does anyone know of a clone with an performance record of it's own?

  • #2
    Not sure about horses.....

    but the bucking bull people are doing it with great success. I think there were 4-6 clones from 2 different bulls competing in their world championships, which says a lot considering only the best bulls are invited to compete at the championships. It is actually uncanny watching them, they were VERY similar to thier "originals" in style and temperments. What the horse folks have not realized that the bull people have, is that it does not need to cost 6 figures to do anymore, I think I read where the bull folks are doing for around $15,000/clone. At that price, competition is not a problem as far as worrying about a $250,000 clone getting hurt.

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    • Original Poster

      #3
      Originally posted by paintjumper View Post
      but the bucking bull people are doing it with great success. I think there were 4-6 clones from 2 different bulls competing in their world championships, which says a lot considering only the best bulls are invited to compete at the championships. It is actually uncanny watching them, they were VERY similar to thier "originals" in style and temperments. What the horse folks have not realized that the bull people have, is that it does not need to cost 6 figures to do anymore, I think I read where the bull folks are doing for around $15,000/clone. At that price, competition is not a problem as far as worrying about a $250,000 clone getting hurt.
      Yes, the cattle people have been at it for quite awhile but I was curious about horse clones. The only horse clones I can find are being bred without any performance record of their own.. I wonder about the wisdom of that practice..Wouldn't it be best to make sure that the clone would be a sound performance horse before breeding?

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      • #4
        Not at $250K to produce....

        I would not do it if I owned a clone that I had to spend that on. Once the technique has been established, and the "new" has worn off, it does not cost $250K to produce a cloned foal...... but until the horse folks stop paying that ridiculous amount, there will probably not be any horse clones in competition. Too risky.

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        • Original Poster

          #5
          I see your point, but ( since clones are not permitted in FEI competitions anyway) wouldn't it be smart just to train the horse to do the work that it was cloned to do, even at a low level (heck, maybe just around the farm) just to make sure that they were basically sound and had a little talent? Before BREEDING them?

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          • #6
            It would make sense to train the clone to whatever level it can manage. The FEI and other governing bodies have been known to change their minds about things, so I would not view and exclusion now as an exclusion forever.
            Where Fjeral Norwegian Fjords Rule
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            • #7
              Originally posted by skydy View Post
              I see your point, but ( since clones are not permitted in FEI competitions anyway) wouldn't it be smart just to train the horse to do the work that it was cloned to do, even at a low level (heck, maybe just around the farm) just to make sure that they were basically sound and had a little talent? Before BREEDING them?
              Most clones are produced for breeding, not for competition.
              Often the original was gelded and sometimes the bloodline has been lost or is in danger of being lost.
              The mantra on this BB is Breed the best and ride the rest.
              You'll see that all the time with mares that have no competition record themselves but come from a mare family that produces top horses.
              Following that logic it makes no sense to compete a clone.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by skydy View Post
                I see your point, but ( since clones are not permitted in FEI competitions anyway) wouldn't it be smart just to train the horse to do the work that it was cloned to do, even at a low level (heck, maybe just around the farm) just to make sure that they were basically sound and had a little talent? Before BREEDING them?
                The originals have already proven the value of their genetics..

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                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  That most clones are produced for breeding is what bothers me.
                  A genetic copy of a horse will not necessarily have the capabilities of the original. I think (fwiw) that they should prove themselves before being bred. It seems that there are already too many unknown factors regarding clones at this point in time. Only time will tell..

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by skydy View Post
                    That most clones are produced for breeding is what bothers me.
                    A genetic copy of a horse will not necessarily have the capabilities of the original. I think (fwiw) that they should prove themselves before being bred. It seems that there are already too many unknown factors regarding clones at this point in time. Only time will tell..
                    I don't understand the 'bothers you' part. Breeding VS performance are not the same thing. Sometimes horses that perform well pass those abilities on to offspring.Sometimes not. Sometimes horses that broke a leg in the field as yearlings produce spectacular sport horses, even though they themselves were never sound enough to be ridden.

                    If you know that horse A was a great Grand Prix horse, then maybe all that you don't know is whether or not it will pass those abilities along. Some individuals are spectacular individuals, but their DNA/traits/abilities do not come out in the next generation.


                    If what you want is to produce multiple spectacular horses through traditional breeding, you might want to breed clone A and see if the wonderfulness carries on down the line.
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                    • #11
                      The cloned mules were used for racing: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Idaho_Gem
                      Erin
                      Dodon Farm Training Center - on Facebook

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                      • #12
                        Not to snark- unless you have the 250 k (which you may) - why does it "bother" you? It's the clone of a proven champion.
                        Come to the dark side, we have cookies

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                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          The breeding of clones that have done nothing but exist bothers (or concerns, if you would prefer that term) me because horse clones are a genetic experiment, not to be compared with performance bred horses(or any other horses for that matter) that are get of a sire and dam.
                          Even a well bred animal that fractures a leg or has other soundness issues would, in an ideal world, not be used for breeding. . We can have no idea how clones will hold up if they are never trained to perform in the sport that they were created for, to represent and carry on the genes of the great animal from which they were cloned.
                          It is the lack of performance results(or even anecdotes) of the horses created from the cloning process,excepting the racing mules, that make me think that the breeding of clones should be a very careful process. I'm sure that some breeders will jump on the clone bandwagon and that others will not.
                          Perhaps clones will be the" be all and end all" of horsedom, I am obviously not qualified to predict the success of the cloning process. I really hope that the breeding of clones will be done carefully and with the best interests of the breed and individual horses in mind. I would love to hear from anyone who has experience riding cloned horses.
                          Merry Christmas!
                          Last edited by skydy; Dec. 26, 2011, 03:59 PM. Reason: Clarity

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