This is all true!
An French rental home is giving people the opportunity to live like a hamster in a specially designed abode that features a running wheel and a crate made of hay.
The Villa Hamster, located in Nantes in western France, was the brainchild of Yann Falquerho, a 42-year-old scenographer, who felt the hotel industry had missed out on the little-known animal-transformation niche.
Sometimes, people really do just want to live like their caged pets, was his reasoning.
"We have a lot of success with this little house. It is because of the concept to transform into an animal," Falquerho said in a Tuesday interview with CBC Radio's As It Happens.
The small home, which dates back to the 1700s, boasts cage-like features such as containers of organic grain, a water tube which guests can sip, and a double bed accessible only by a step ladder and a quick scramble on all fours, according to a description in the Guardian newspaper.
Since opening two weeks ago, the Villa has been inundated by media and bookings, so much so that Falquerho, who owns the house, plans to raise the rate from $156 a night to about $230 in 2010.
The hamster villa has been successful enough for Falquerho to consider expanding into other animal worlds.
"Perhaps if we made a special house where you can transform into a dog or a cat, it might be [just as popular.]"
Falquerho said the most difficult part of the venture was finding a hamster wheel big enough for humans. He sought help from an interior designer and an architect. One of his favourite aspects is to see the reaction of his guests.
"When you push the door open to this little house, you think, 'Ahh, my God! What is it? Where am I?' When we see the effect on our customer, it's always amazing," he said.
"We always ask them, 'Why do you want to come into our house?' And every time they tell us, well, 'It was so strange so we wanted to see this house. We've never seen a place where we can transform into a hamster.'"
Vive la Merde!