Pets & Animals

Why is this tiny hamster eating a tiny burrito? Viral video's secrets revealed

Pet owners can be fastidious when it comes to feeding their furry pals, but in a new video going viral this week, one man takes this ritual to a whole new level. Not only does he meticulously create a tiny burrito, he serves it to a hamster at a miniature table, complete with dinnerware and mood lighting.

That's the premise of the 90-second clip titled “Tiny Hamsters Eating Tiny Burritos,” which has already racked up more than 2.5 million page views since being uploaded to YouTube.

“Tiny Hamsters” is the brainchild of Hello Denizen, the original content division of the Los Angeles-based ad agency Denizen Company, which recently won a Webby Award for the Best Bus Stop Ever campaign. Joel Jensen, a co-founder of the agency, said the inspiration for the tiny burrito came from the Internet’s preoccupation with small things.

“We were inspired by people's love of miniature versions of things and the way they talk about it online —miniature food being cute in and of itself,” Jensen told “We wanted to heighten that, so it seemed natural to feed it to something similarly cute and small.”

Hello Denizen drafted food blogger Farley Elliot to play the chef, while a hamster named Bogart was brought in via an animal trainer. The video was shot in an apartment a few weeks ago, and took 10 to 15 takes to film, with Bogart eating about 20 burritos throughout the duration of the shoot.

“For how absurd the idea was, it was a pretty straightforward shoot,” Jensen said. “Hamsters aren’t very bright, so it’s really a delight to see them do what you need them to do.”

One of the reasons the video has delighted viewers is the creativity and detailed preparation that went into making the miniature burritos. Elliot devised a way to create the food items by using the dental equipment seen in the video to piece together the tiny ingredients before rolling them by hand.

“He actually used egg roll wrappers as the tortilla because they'd be most pliable at that small scale,” Jensen revealed. “We consulted with the hamster trainers to determine what ingredients they'd like and would be healthy for them.”

Hello Denizen plans on creating future episodes for the “Tiny Hamster” series, and Jensen said that they have been delighted with the “extremely positive” response.

“If we are lucky enough to do this forever, we’ll die happy," he said. "We probably won't be able to, but we'll do our best.”

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