Alchy the alcoholic hamster

Back in 1958, high-school sophomore Diana McGee chose as her biology project an experiment "to make a hamster an alcoholic, then to cure it of the disease." She named the hamster "Alchy". The hamster consumed about a pint of bourbon a month and reportedly "seems to love it." Unfortunately, the news report never followed up on whether McGee was able to cure her hamster of his habit. Nor did it reveal what grade McGee got for her project.

Source: The Salina Journal (Salina, Kansas).

Update: I actually spoke too soon about the lack of a follow-up. Another search revealed that the Salina Journal did report on Apr 25, 1958 that Alchy eventually refused to drink any more of the bourbon-water mixture, leading the paper to comment that "the animal has more sense than some people."

     Posted By: Alex - Fri Jun 06, 2014
     Category: Animals | Inebriation and Intoxicants | Experiments





Comments
Quote: "the animal has more sense than some people"

We know that!
Posted by Expat47 in Athens, Greece on 06/06/14 at 10:25 AM
My mother used to take us to her mother's farm during the summer. We used to do the same with grandma's chickens and pilfered beer. It resulted in much amusement for us kids while we were stuck out on the farm with nothing else to do.

I think those chickens were glad to see us when we arrived at the beginning of summer.
Posted by KDP on 06/06/14 at 12:09 PM
When we were on a southern Caribbean island off the cruise ship (at the beach) you had to watch out for these monkeys that would steal drinks.
Posted by BrokeDad in Midwest US on 06/06/14 at 11:05 PM
Mom grew up in a small town during Prohibition. Everyone had a cow or two for their own milk supply; they would turn them out into the fields during the day and they would wander off into the woods. The older boys would round them up again after school. Many of the men had big stills out in the woods and would dump the mash when they were done with it. The cows would find the mash, eat it, and get buzzed. I never understood why Mom was leery of cows until she told about being chased down the street as a little girl by a drunken cow.
Posted by ScoutC on 06/07/14 at 10:52 AM
Didn't we have a story about a moose that ate fermented app;es and got drunk? Its a wonder that an animal as small as a hamster didn't die of alcohol poisoning during her 'experiment'.
Posted by Patty in Ohio, USA on 06/07/14 at 09:30 PM
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