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Hamster butts are cute, cuddly -- and taking over the viral animal scene. / Igor Kovalchuk, Getty Images/iStockphoto

What's up?

Hamster butt!

No, really.

In a world where celebrity kittens write books, adorn memes and rescue boys from vicious dog attacks (then throw honorary first pitches at baseball games), the Internet's affinity for fluffy animals knows no bounds.

The latest adorable animal trend in Japan? Hamster butts, or as they're known to fans, hamuketsu. And they're totally "kawaii" (translation: lovable and cute).

The Wall Street Journal reports that after online success, two books devoted to hamsters' fluffy rear ends have sold about 40,000 copies in Japan, and a third book is on the way.

The two books are titled, in translation, Hamuketsu - So Cute You Could Faint (published April 19) and Hamuketsu (published March 12). The Original Hamuketsu is due out on May 30.

Japan is known for being on top of the cute animal trends, including puppies, kittens, baby turtles, otters, sloths, hedgehogs, sea lions and panda cubs. In 2011, Japanese cat Maru, a Scottish Fold known for its YouTube videos of squeezing into boxes, made a splash in the U.S. publishing scene with I Am Maru.

--

Follow @lindsdee on Twitter.



Copyright 2014 USATODAY.com

Read the original story: Hamster butts are the latest adorable animal trend

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