Hamsters Have an Epic Tolerance for Alcohol

Scientists have long known that hamsters have an affinity for alcohol. They will approach fermented fruit with an eagerness not seen in other species. Experiments show they can drink a lot more, adjusted for weight, than other species as well. Gwen Lupfer of the University of Alaska Anchorage gave dwarf hamsters alcohol to see how they tolerated it. They noted some surprising findings.

1. They didn't have to train the hamsters to drink alcohol, as with other animals and even humans. The hamsters took right to the drink. One hamster named Bacardi would even do tasks to get an alcohol reward.

2. The hamsters showed a great alcohol tolerance. They could ingest 7.5 g/kg without impairment. Lupfer said, "At 1 g/kg humans are too drunk to drive." However, they did not test the hamsters' driving ability.

3. That tolerance disappeared when the hamsters were injected with alcohol instead of drinking it. The scientists think the animals' digestive systems may have something to do with metabolizing liquor.

Read more about hamsters and their drinking habits at Animalogic. -via Fark 

#hamster #alcohol

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