"It's a multibillion-dollar business waiting to happen," Hawthorne said.
Hawthorne's company, Genetic Savings & Clone, claims it has a waiting list of those ready to pay $50,000 to clone a beloved cat. Dogs will cost more, reports CBS News Correspondent John Blackstone.
"We have a money-back guarantee that the clone will be healthy and that it will have a very high degree of physical resemblance," Hawthorne said.
Genetic Savings & Clone would not share its client list, but was happy to provide its own video testimonials.
Jeanne Shelby has ordered a clone of her late cat, Tweety.
"It made the death of Tweety at least bearable because I had hope then that I may share a part of him with me again," Shelby said
For many people losing a pet is like losing a member of the family - a deep traumatic event. But even among those grieving at a Humane Society support group, cloning seems desperate.
"To do it right after a pet loss, no, that's too bizarre," said a man named Louis.
Jeanne Shelby thinks Tweety deserves at least one more of his nine lives.
"He had more on the ball than most of the people I've met in my life," Shelby said. "And I can't wait to meet the clone!"
But while Shelby waits for science to replace Tweety, Masa and Corina Kojima tried another approach when their beloved Catapuss died. They went to the pound.
"You know, before they clone they should at least come and see who else is around already and alive already," said Corina Kojima.
And there they found Tortilina - not a clone at all - but very much an individual and already much loved.