Thursday, July 31st, 2008
Electronic Hamsters are the Best Pets for Toddlers
Living hamsters are really cute and very small â€” the right size for tiny hands. So you’d think they are the ideal pet for toddlers. WRONG!
Lil’ Fluffy is cuddly until he sinks his dagger-like fangs into your child’s finger. Congratulations. You just awarded your child a lifelong fear of animals. The next thing you know, he’s wetting his bed, starting fires and taking delight in cruelty to animals. It’s called the Macdonald triad of sociopathy. By age 15, your kid is diagnosed with an anti-social personality disorder and by his 21st birthday he’s a serial killer.
Electronic pets are the safe way to go. Say hello to two fantastic products that condense the home hamster experience to its basic elements of joy.
Joy #1: Watching a hamster run in its wheel.
Product: Hamster Wheel Runner. This 4-inch furry hamster runs on a plastic wheel until the two AAA batteries run out. He comes in assorted colors and retails for less than $10.
No feeding. No cage cleaning. No subscribing to a newspaper just to have a cage liner. Hours of observational fun. Perhaps the only thing that could top this idea would be a hamster DVD. Then he’d take up less storage space and travel well for use in your SUV’s backseat DVD player.
Joy #2: Watching a hamster run in his hamster ball.
Product: Hamusuta the Happy Hamster.
This 1 AAA battery powered cutie runs inside his clear plastic ball or outside the ball. Your choice! Why did the hamster cross the road? Find out! How many times can he cross the road before his luck runs out? I smell science experiment!
Hamusuta features "realistic running action" and is touted as "the carefree & playful pet." But is it really?
Believe the Amazon.com customer who posted this review: "My 5-year-old son wanted a hamster for his birthday and we didn’t want a live one! This one is very cute and fuzzy and runs all over the house. The kids love it."
That’s sage advice. A living hamster is really the parents’ responsibility. Don’t expect a toddler to do a competent job cleaning the cage or remembering to feed Lil’ Fluffy. And then you’re the one who has to dig the backyard grave.
Oh, but not if you bought an electronic hamster! He never dies! Pass him down from child to child. Let your great grandchildren come to know the same love for e-pets as you provided for your own children.
I jest about all of this, except the added parental responsibility. I’ll never purchase an electronic plush animal and certainly not one intended as a pet substitute (not to mention, these might not be safe for kids under 3-years-old).
But as long as I’m talking hamsters, I do know a preschool that let a different child take home the school’s live hamster each weekend to care for it. Everything was peachy until one kid let the hamster run around on his floor and the family dog ate him. I mean, ate the hamster, not the kid.
Please feel free to post your own excellent reasons why electronic pets are great for children, or reminisce about unfortunate animal accidents. It’s Sarcasm and Therapy Day here at Thingamababy.