Target Cancels Zhu Zhu Pet Order Placed In September, Ruins Christmas

Long before the national robot hamster shortage began, before fights broke out over the toy critters, and even before Consumerist took notice of the trend, Stacey’s daughters wanted Zhu Zhu Pets for Christmas. She ordered two hamsters and a playset for them from in mid-September, and waited for them to come off backorder. And waited. Finally, less than two weeks before Christmas, Target canceled her order.

In mid-September we saw a commercial for Zhu Zhu pets & my girls were fascinated…we placed an order with Target on the same day, in my mother’s name for the Zhu Zhu Pet Hamster Starter House. We ordered 2. My kids had been through quite a lot with our house flooding in GA, living in a hotel room over a month while the house was repaired- I wanted a good Christmas for them this year, to make up for a lot of horrible memories. We had no idea what a hot item these things were going to be.

The item showed up as on back order, but said would ship they would within 2-4 weeks so we ordered it, thinking we had plenty of time for Xmas. After a month we contacted them and were told, “they will be in by the end of next week and you should have them the first week of November.” Two weeks later the process repeats itself and we’re continually told “one more week….”

Here we are December 12th, and we get an email from our friends at Target telling us that they’re unable to fill our order and have canceled it for us, and not charged our credit card. This is what we received:

“Dear [Stacey’s mother],

I’m sorry to hear about the cancellation of the
Cepia Zhu Zhu PetHamster from your order.

Unfortunately, our supplier wasn’t able to get us
any this Zhu Zhu PetHamster Toy as we expected, even though
it looked like they would when you placed your order.
Because of this, we had to cancel this item from your order.
You haven’t been charged for this, as we only charge you
when we ship your items.”

Notice how they blame the supplier? The supplier sent them a shipment every Sunday! They just chose to give it to the people IN the store and not those of us who preordered online MONTHS ago……aren’t they sweet to do this?! Leave us hanging 13 days before Christmas?

Now the only option left is to go on eBay and order them where the price for these $8.00 hamsters is now upwards of $30.00. The “fun house starter set” we ordered is now going for over $50.00. My girls are so sure they are getting one, I can’t let them down.


Stacey’s main complaint against Target is that while her order was canceled, the discounter actually does have Zhu Zhu Pets in stock–in its brick-and-mortar stores. Some of them. Sometimes. If you really, really like standing in line.