With Halloween coming up , there is no shortage of Halloween themed articles, mainly featuring animals in both hilarious and adorable costumes.
As much as I enjoy viewing pictures of Chihuahuas dressed as bumble bees, I thought I’d do something different and feature the scariest pets in movies. And then immediately regretted that decision. Pugs reinventing sexy Halloween costumes makes for much more pleasant research material than Zoltan Hound of Dracula (he’s not on this list – I thought he was too hideous. But you can Google him. If you dare…).
So, after sifting through some genuinely terrifying Google entries and getting well and truly in the Halloween spirit, here’s my pick of the spookiest fur monsters in film (and some who are not so furry on account of being infected by a Zombie virus):
1. The cats from Strays
This 1991 horror was made for TV but, as it stars a bunch of feral murderous cats, I had to include it in this list. Admittedly, with the exception of the ring-leader Mookie, these kitties are not the scariest. But then again, the telephone repair man might disagree (you’ll have to watch the film).
2. The bunnies from Watership Down
Ah, bunny-rabbits. Adorable, fluffy little creatures, right? Wrong! This may be a children’s classic and these bunnies may be animated, but it is one of the most terrifying children movies ever made, as this clip so horrifically demonstrates (seriously, it’s pretty graphic so not for the faint of heart!).
3. The Killer Rabbit of Caerbannog, Monty Python And The Holy Grail
Another seemingly adorable ball of white fluff, with, as they say in the film, ‘a mean streak a mile wide’. This may be a comedy and the ‘special affects’ may be distinctly 70s, but this vicious rodent will still have you running for cover!
4. Mrs Norris, Harry Potter
Maybe it’s her red eyes, her superior intelligence, the way she’s always lurking around keeping watch or her unusually strong bond with the equally unnerving Filch, there’s just something about this Maine Coon that creeps me out.
5. Fluffy, Harry Potter
Okay, I know Hagrid’s three-headed dog actually turned out to be a big softy, but, really, look at him!
6. Church, Pet Sematary
This is based on a Stephen King book, which should really tell you all you need to know. A father buries the family cat in an Indian cemetery, only to have it return the next day, acting rather ‘strange’. It’s fair to say the film doesn’t really hit its scary stride until the family’s toddler Gage joins Church in the un-dead murderous antics, but the end credits alone, accompanied by Church meowing in a corner of the screen, are enough to give anyone nightmares for life (I tried to find a clip but couldn’t find one, which is something to be thankful for).
Another Stephen King adaptation (what is it with Mr King and killer pets??). This time the story revolved round a St Bernard who goes mad after he is bitten by a rabid bat and tries to kill his family. One thing is certain – this is no Beethoven!
8. Zombie Dogs, Resident Evil
Dobermans infected with a Zombie Virus to make them viscous, furless killing machines. Lovely. After the last few clips, I thought I’d spare you the fright and post a fantastic little clip of how the zombie dogs were created, with the help of some clever make up and the blissfully non-alarming canine actors.
9. Sam, I Am Legend
This gorgeous German Shepherd spends most of the film being a loyal, dedicated companion to Will Smith, as GSDs usually are. However, after being bitten by a zombie dog (again with the zombie dogs!) she turns really rather disagreeable. This scene manages to be both heart-breaking and scary at the same time.
10. The cats who turn Michelle Pfeiffer in Batman Returns
I am woman, hear me whimper with fear. There might be much debate about who the best Catwoman is (in case you’re wondering, it’s totally Ms Pfeiffer!), but one thing is certain – the scene where Selina Kyle gets mauled by dozens of feral cats is totally, absolutely frightening.
11. Gmork, Never Ending Story
I’m not entirely sure this qualifies as ‘pet’ material – more humanised, demonised wolf-like creature of doom, but this is such a fantastic movie that I thought it deserved a mention. Plus, Gmork is really really scary!
12. Blofeld’s Cat in the Bond films / Mr Biggleworth in Austin Powers
To look at, both of these stunning Persian cats are not scary in the slightest. But it is the air of menace extended to them by their super-villain masters that gives them that distressing edge. Then Mr Bigglesworth transforms into a Sphynx cat, which can be perceived as less pleasing to the eye (but I think is awesome!).
13. Sparky, Frankenweenie
Another zombie dog, but unlike his predecessors on this list, this one is harmless and positively adorable. This means he probably shouldn’t be on this list, but he’s still a zombie dog and Frankenweenie is a great film so enjoy this last clip and have a spooky, jolly and happy Halloween!