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Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Wendy - The Mutated Dog

Wendy - The Mutated Dog

Wendy - The Hulk Dog

Wendy the Whippet has a genetic disorder resulting her being the Incredible Hulk of dogs. She is one rare breed and people refer her to as Arnold Schwarzenegger says owner Ingrid Hansen. Twice the weight of an average whippet at 27 kilograms, she probably won't live as long as normal whippets.

Wendy was recently part of a genetics study done in the U.S. on mutation in the myostatin gene in whippets, which resemble greyhounds in appearance. The National Institute of Health study reported that whippets with one single defective copy of the gene have increased muscle mass that can enhance racing performance in the breed, known for speeds up to 60 kilometres an hour.

But whippets with two mutated copies of the gene become "double-muscled," like Wendy. It has been seen before in one human, and also in mice, cattle and sheep, says the study.

The uber-muscled whippets are called "bullies," not because of their nature -- Wendy likes nothing better than a good back scratch and isn't shy about sitting in your lap to ask for one -- but because of their size. She's about twice the weight of an average whippet, but with the same height and small narrow head -- and the same size heart and lungs, which means she probably won't live as long as normal whippets.

People are often afraid when the muscle-bound dog runs up to them on her dainty whippet-thin legs, but they soon realize she's friendly.

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