Whether you’re a dog person, cat person, bird person or the less common but equally enjoyable pig person, it’s hard to deny that an animal companion makes life a little bit better. The right pet can grow to become more than just a non-Homo sapien house-dweller that occasionally poops on the floor and chews on furniture; it can become a friend, a best friend, one as loyal and chipper as the best of humans.
Unfortunately, a trustworthy pet can quickly—and without warning—become a savage, destructive, mouth-foaming terror, a beast bent on annihilating anyone who crosses its master’s path, and occasionally, the master himself.
The lovable monkey Caeser, from the upcoming Rise of the Planet of the Apes, is a prime(ate) example of when a loving creature can turn from good to bad, not adorable aww-look-what-such-and-such-did! bad, but bad bad.
Hollywood has a history of delivering up some of the world’s most pestilential pets—here are a few of the nastiest:
Cujo from Cujo
In Stephen King-land, pets are rarely symbols of cuteness or, uh, cuddly-ness; rather, they are almost always murderous devils, as in the case of cinema’s most infamous St. Bernard, Cujo, a doggone (hehe) serial killer. Remember: Have your pets spade, neutered and vaccinated for rabies!
Church from Pet Sematary
The Stephen King house-pet demonization, Exhibit B.—this time it’s a cat. For some people, cats have an evilness about them naturally, but Church from Pet’s Sematary? Well, she’s a different breed of disturbing, even before coming back from the dead to terrorize people.
Gremlins from Gremlins
Everybody’s favorite ‘80s-movie creature not named E.T. is cute as a little lost duckling poking its little head out of a box. But ducklings don’t spawn reptilian bloodthirsties! Or shoot guns. (Probably.)
Beethoven from Beethoven
Aside from being so huge, cumbersome and rambunctious that he ruins stuff (i.e., family barbecues), there is nothing that technically makes Beethoven a terrible house pet. But that doesn’t stop Charles Grodin’s George Newton from feeling the wrath of God every time Beethoven pulls one of his zany stunts. He would have preferred adopting Cerberus over the infamous St. Bernard.
Harry from Harry and the Hendersons
Who knew Bigfoot could be so gentle and caring and possess a million-watt smile?! Who cares?! He stinks, he ruins everything, and he runs away constantly! And imagine the shedding.
Alvin, Simon and Theodore from Alvin and the Chipmunks
We could deal with Alvin’s smartassery and the combined jackassery of all three chipmunks—and hell, it’d be a cool icebreaker to have those pintsized buffoons hangin’ around the house. But the helium voices…good God, those voices.
Dug from Up
The novelty of an anthropomorphic pooch, like Dug, would wear off quickly, because if every time it barks counts as a human-voiced conversation, it’d basically never shut up. Even if you could program it back to “dog mode,” it’d be impossible to un-remember the creepiness factor of it all.