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Artist Who Makes People Cry With Her Animal Comics Just Released A New One About A Neglected Hamster


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If you’ve ever owned a hamster or several like me, then you’re going to feel your heart break after looking through German artist Jenny Hefczyc’s latest comic. The artist, who is known far and wide as Jenny-Jinya, tackled the harsh reality that some people stop looking after their hamsters because of peer pressure.

Jenny points out that some owners neglect hamsters and similar small pets because they’re cheap to get. A lack of education and empathy can lead to hamsters suffering and having a shorter lifespan. So doing at least some research before getting a pet, as well as being prepared to provide your pets with good living conditions and food are all a must.

Just remember, dear Pandas, the topic might hit you hard: it’s all right to shed a tear because these little hamster fellows are worth every bit of love, just like bigger pets. You will find our other recent articles about Jenny’s art here (lonely swan), here (tribute to shelter staff), and here (isolated orca). These comics always inspire us to have more empathy for all living things. We hope they’ll inspire you as well.

I had another lovely chat with Jenny about her newest comic. She told Bored Panda that hamsters have been on her list for a long time. “But the urge to draw a comic was reinforced when someone on Facebook got a hamster and proudly posted a photo of a cage that was way too small. It was sad how resistant the person was to advice, and the counter-argument was really just ‘the staff at the pet store said the size was sufficient!’”

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Artist Jenny-Jinya decided that it’s time that we talked about hamsters and how some owners neglect these tiny little rodents

Image credits: jenny_jinya

Image credits: jenny_jinya

Image credits: jenny_jinya

Image credits: jenny_jinya

Image credits: jenny_jinya

Image credits: jenny_jinya

Image credits: jenny_jinya

Image credits: jenny_jinya

Image credits: jenny_jinya

I wanted to get Jenny’s opinion as to why there are some people who don’t give hamsters the care and attention they require. “I have the feeling that the tenor ‘it’s just a hamster’ still prevails. ‘If a hamster dies you just buy a new one for 10 bucks.’ Anyone can buy such a small life for little money, often still under false advice because the staff in many pet stores isn’t properly trained. It’s a general wrong attitude towards animals, not just rodents,” the artist said.

According to Jenny, we can all manage to find the time to do some research before getting a pet. All we need to do is sit down and open our minds. “It’s actually not a lot of work to sit down and learn about the creature you want to bring into your home. It’s not too much work and effort to improve their lives either. A few fresh vegetables, generally a healthy, balanced diet,” she shared. Let the hamster explore the world outside the cage every now and then (in a safe and supervised environment, of course). Keep their cages clean and learn about the causes and symptoms of common hamster diseases. Just take responsibility for the little life that depends on you.”

Jenny also added a PSA about the importance for owners to do proper research before getting a pet

Image credits: jenny_jinya

At the end of the comic, Jenny provides a public service announcement, urging hamster owners to educate themselves on how to make their tiny buddies’ lives better. That includes feeding them the right food, getting them a cage that’s spacious enough for them to move about, and providing them with a safe, larger wheel for them to exercise in.

From my own personal experience raising hamsters, I can tell you that giving them the right food is absolutely paramount. Try to mix in some fresh lettuce and bits of veggies from time to time to complement the dry food you get in stores.

What’s more, be sure to change their water daily (and wash the bottle thoroughly so there’s no icky mold growing anywhere) and their bedding at least once a week (more often in the summer). But above everything, engage your hamsters! Play with them, talk to them. They’re a member of your family now after all. It’s always heart-rending when our miniature rodent friends cross the rainbow, but until then, we can fill their lives and tiny hearts with joy.

Here is what some of Jenny’s fans have been saying about her latest comic

Earlier, during my chats with Jenny, I learned that her motivation for drawing is to tell stories and create worlds with her illustrations. Each one of her comics requires a lot of research, besides, the topics can be very emotionally draining for her. So after she publishes a new comic, she takes a few days off to get some rest, relax, and recuperate from all the effort.

Jenny also shared that she often takes in sick and injured animals. Her love of animals is very genuine and she practices it beyond her art.

Though each of her comics takes a different amount of time to finish, she needs around a week for the drawings themselves. That’s on top of the research that she does for each and every story.

“I picked up a pencil when I was a kid and I never stopped scribbling. I always wanted to be an artist. I wanted to tell stories and create worlds,” the German artist said that drawing is in her blood and has been following her all of her life.

What do you think of Jenny’s art, dear Readers? What are your thoughts about her latest comic? Are any of you former or current hamster owners like myself? Let us know in the comment section.

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