Do People Eat Hamsters


Do People Eat Hamsters

Hamsters are small, fluffy, and sometimes even pocket-sized critters, making it understandable why some would consider the idea of eating them. Though the thought of consuming a hamster may seem shocking, the answer to the question of “do people eat hamsters?” is a complicated one.

Hamsters in Food Cultures Around the World

Though it is not as common as pork, beef, or chicken, hamsters are eaten in some cultures. In some parts of China and North Korea, it is not considered bizarre to eat hamsters, as the meat is believed to have certain properties that promote health. In Europe, there have been cases of hamsters used in traditional dishes such as French cassoulet in the 17th century. However, these cases are not common and hamster meat is not present in any major cuisines.

Do People Eat Domestic Pet Hamsters?

In most cases, no. For a variety of reasons including health laws in some countries and out of respect for pets, very few people choose to eat their pet hamsters. Beyond the legality and ethical issues, two major factors go against eating the pet hamster: health and smell.

  • Health: It is risky to consume the meat of a pet hamster without knowing its background and health history. The hamster may have been exposed to viruses or diseases, either through contact with humans or other animals, and eating it may cause foodborne illnesses.
  • Smell: Hamsters, like other animals, produce a distinct smell. This smell can vary depending on their diet, hygiene habits and environment, but it is often a difficult smell to stomach and not one typically associated with food.

It is generally believed that consuming pet hamsters, or any pet for that matter, is not a safe or wise decision. Though some consider it acceptable in certain food cultures, in most cases consuming a hamster would be considered both legally and ethically wrong.

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