FRIENDSWOOD, Texas - "He would absolutely go nuts for this little toy," said Jeff Baker, who still has the electronic toy, but not his white Maltese mix named Jack.
Jack is no ordinary dog. He is a clone of an abused dog Baker found at the Friendswood Animal Shelter.
"One-eyed Jack was my little rescue that I adopted the day after Christmas in 2011," he says.
One-eyed Jack suddenly passed away on March 31, 2019. The next day, Baker decided to have him cloned.
Viagen Pet Services performed the service. Its website states that dog cloning costs are $50,000, paid in two equal installments.
Tissue biopsies were taken from One-Eyed Jack. After altering a female dog's egg with one of Jack's cells, the embryo was then planted in a surrogate dog for delivery. All genetic material from the original pet remains unchanged, so the new Jack is essentially an idential twin of One-Eyed Jack born at a later time.
Jack was born in August, and Baker brought his new puppy home in October. He went missing last Wednesday, but the flurry of social media attention he's getting has yet to lead to his return.
Baker is offering a large reward of $4,000 for his puppy. He says it isn't about the cost of the dog, he just wants his beloved companion back at home.