Hong Kong Enacts Hamster Genocide Amid COVID Spread Concerns

OPINION | This article contains political commentary which reflects the author's opinion.

Remember in January 2020 when we saw headlines about murder hornets and thought, “This is probably the weirdest animal headline I’m going to see for a while”? And then 2021 brought us the Indian monkey vendetta, and we all said, “Surely it can’t get stranger than this!”

Well, it did. Because now, thanks to Hong Kong, hamsters and genocide are now things that go together.

Hong Kong made the decision to kill 2,000 small mammals, primarily hamsters, after some of them tested positive for COVID at a pet store where an employee had been infected. Note that they can’t determine definitively whether the hamsters got the ‘Rona from the employee, but because of mass hysteria, thousands of sweet, innocent, newborn-eating rodents must forfeit their lives.

While people who bought hamsters from the store in question are being forced to surrender their pets for extermination, Hong Kong authorities aren’t quite going door to door rounding up suspect rodents.

“If you own a hamster, you should keep your hamsters at home, do not take them out,” department director Leung Siu-fai said at a news conference. “All pet owners should observe good personal hygiene, and after you have been in contact with animals and their food, you should wash your hands.”

I’m sure these instructions to keep hamsters at home will change the lifestyles of many, if not all, hamster owners in Hong Kong. It may seem strange to picture hamsters out on wee little walkies, but COTR have obtained the exclusive scoop that, yes, there are hamster-sized walking harnesses.

Look, I know that thousands of cute little animals being sentenced to death isn’t funny. In fact, if I dwell on it, it will make me quite sad, so I would prefer to keep this very surface-level and end with a little twist on one of my favorite jokes:

What do you do with your pet hamster in Hong Kong?

You take it for a drag.

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