Seven five-month-old puppies were declared the products of the first successful in-vitro fertilisation attempt made on a dog in a scientific paper published on Wednesday. The pups – five beagles and two "bockers," or beagle-cocker spaniel mixes – were born on July 10 this year after a dog was successfully implanted with 19 embryos by a team of researchers at Cornell University. Beyond being cute, the healthy puppies are a sign that the IVF process can be used to save several endangered species, such as the African Panda dog.
An experiment in 2013 helped pave the way for the 2015 success, a Business Insider report said. Dr Pierre Comizzoli, a reproductive physiologist for the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, which was also part of the research, called this is a "huge breakthrough". Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute doctoral fellow Jennifer Nagashima, who co-wrote the paper, said IVF in dogs could be used in everything from conserving endangered species to removing "deleterious traits from breeds".