Apparently a Biotech firm has used selective breeding to produce largely hypoallergenic cats–for $4k each. On the one hand this is awesome; I know what it’s like to love cats and yet have really nasty reactions to them. I’m lucky that I found a breed I don’t react to very much (Cornish Rex); otherwise I wouldn’t be able to have cats. On the other hand, I can’t imagine paying that much for a cat, and of course any time selective breeding is involved you have to wonder what else is being bred in or out. However, there’s an argument to be made that perhaps selective breeding overseen by a biotech company is less likely to produce genetic abnormalities and flaws than some random cat breeder’s efforts (depending on the company), so this could be a step up. And since undoubtedly there’s no way the company is going to allow anyone to breed these cats other than them, which means every cat they sell will be spayed or neutered, it could mean fewer unwanted kittens. Except, of course, that the kind of people who are willing to spend $4k on a cat are probably at least marginally more likely to spay and neuter their cats in the first place.
At any rate, hopefully our five-year-old Cornish Rexes will live a long and happy life, and it’ll be a very long time before I have to consider whether or not I want to look into something like this. And by then, they’ll be a heck of a lot cheaper, I hope.
Link found on FARK.
Traditional edit: Darn it, I’ve now read that the guy who runs this company has a reputation as an inveterate con artist. Phooey.