Posted by: brian | July 28, 2007

I like dogs

I found an intriguing piece on Slate about the genetic heritage of dogs. (There’s a reason I won’t get another purebred pooch.) And despite some of the funny names people are coming up with for “hybrids” (bassettoodle, boxador, rat-cha, papshund, frengle, and yes, even dorkie), I’m glad that these so-called “designer dogs” are gaining popularity, because it will go a long way toward diluting the impact of generations of inbreeding.

Nonetheless – is it really so bad that we have this resource that can expand our understanding of genetics, particularly as it relates to heritable diseases? The article seems to take a dim view of the practice, but I don’t think it’s so cut-and-dried.

Besides which, the dog wasn’t the only result of prehistoric genetic engineering. Agriculture, anyone?


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