Rover Redux

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Did you cry at the end of "Old Yeller"? Or perhaps you had your own Lassie once, and she didn't come home. Well, now that science has opened the door on the possibility of unlimited copies of animals, you may find yourself wishing you had the $5 million a Texas man has paid experts at Texas A&M to clone his dog.

But TIME science correspondent Michael Lemonick points out that this shaggy dog story may go on and on. And on. Indeed, "it's silly," says Lemonick. "In the other cloning experiments they tried many times on many animals with many failures. In this case the chances are quite slim." Lemonick says that in the wake of the mouse cloning success, many other initiatives are being pursued that, while less cuddly than the second coming of Missy, actually have far more practical applications. "There's much bigger money to be made in cloning sheep," he says. But when was the last time a sheep brought you your slippers?