Zhu Zhu Pets Recall: Toy Hamsters May Pose Health Risk

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Zhu Zhu Pets, the cute robotic hamster popular among kids and one of the hottest toys for Christmas may not be safe, says Good Guide, a consumer group in California.

Goodguide.com says the product (named “Mr. Squiggles”) contains tin, which is potentially harmful to the immune and nervous systems and antimony, which may be linked to cancer and lung and heart problems.

“If ingested in high enough levels [it] can lead to cancer, reproductive health, and other human health hazards,” said Dara O’Rourke, an associate professor of environmental science at U.C.-Berkeley, and co-founder of Goodguide.com.

Cepia LLC, the manufacturer of Zhu Zhu Pets, released a statement to CBS News as a response to Good Guide’s warning. The company says that its hamster toys are “absolutely safe and has passed the most rigorous testing in the toy industry for consumer health and safety.”

“We are disputing the findings of Good Guide, and we are 100 percent confident that Mr. Squiggles, and all other Zhu Zhu toys, are safe and compliant with all U.S. and European standards for consumer health and safety in toys.”