Pet in the microwave

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The pet in the microwave is a modern legend from the USA . In technical documentation in particular , this story is often cited as an example when it comes to questions of product liability .

This legend tells of an old lady who kept a pet (typically a dog or a cat). When the animal got wet on a rainy day, she would put it in the oven of her hearth to allow it to dry over a low heat. When the stove broke, she replaced it with a modern microwave oven . The next rainy day she wanted to dry her pet in the stove as usual; including:

  • (moderate variant) the animal slowly died from exposure to microwaves.
  • (radical variant) the animal exploded.

In both variants, the lady suffered a psychological shock as a result . She successfully sued the manufacturer of the cooker for a substantial sum of damages, on the grounds that there was no corresponding safety notice either in her instructions for use or on the device itself . As a consequence of this, microwave ovens are marked with the warning Not suitable for drying pets .

There is no known evidence of such legal proceedings.

However, there have been some cases where animals or people have been intentionally injured or killed by exposure to microwave ovens.

The legend in other media

The comic website Joe Cartoon published in 1999 the interactive Flash -Cartoon- Gerbil in a Microwave , in which the user can set in a microwave by pressing a key different levels, while the hamster out of the machine commented each new step with cheeky sayings, until he finally is killed in the final stage.

This legend is processed in the horror film Dark Legends . Also in the film Gremlins - Little Monsters , a gremlin is killed in a microwave oven. In the superhero film Kick-Ass, a person bursts into a microwave for lumber. In the cartoon series South Park , Kenny, one of the four main characters, dies in a microwave in episode five of the first season (Dance of the Mutants, Season 1, Episode 5, English title: An Elephant Makes Love to a Pig ). In the film Snakes on a Plane , one of the snakes finds its explosive end in the microwave in the cabin kitchen. The death of a pet in a microwave in the episode Gisi's cat also plays a central role in the German comedy series Rita's World .

The legend is also taken up in the computer game Day of the Tentacle . There a hamster is placed in a microwave oven to defrost, but survives the procedure, as the microwave is a device from the future. In the predecessor of this title, Maniac Mansion , however, the hamster exploded while trying to heat it up in the microwave.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Operating instructions LG MS2024U  ( page no longer available , search in web archives ), May 28, 2013 (PDF, page 4, note no.2)@1@ 2Template: Dead Link /
  2. Microwaved cat woman avoids jail, July 23, 2001
  3. Teenager who microwaved his brother's hamster is given four months in youth custody , article at, accessed June 24, 2010
  4. Joe Cartoon - Gerbil in a Microwave , accessed June 24, 2010
  5. South Park Digital Studios: Dance of the Mutants. September 10, 1997, accessed on December 2, 2017 (German).