Fact Check

Doctor Finds Boys Missing Hamster Wedged Into 700 Pound Mom’s Back Fat

No, a doctor didn't discover a long-dead hamster rotting between folds of a morbidly obese mother's fat.

Published Jun 1, 2016

A doctor discovered a boy's missing hamster decomposing between folds of his mother's back fat.

On 10 May 2016, dubious web site Now8News published an article reporting that a small boy's hamster was found dead "in the 'back-fat'" of his morbidly obese mother:

A five-year-old boy is being consoled by his family after his missing hamster, Teddy Bear, was found dead in the back-fat of his 700 pound mother. Michelle Wiggins, 31, was hauled to the emergency room by her sister when complaints of a foul smell had them concerned that one of her bedsores may have been of infected.

However, when examined by the emergency room doctor, Wiggins bedsores were the least of her family’s problems. With her 5 year-old son present, Dr. Timothy Murphy examined the obese woman, feeling an odd “lump” within the folds of her back-fat. When the doctor lifted the skin to examine the area, he was astonished to find a dead rodent decomposing on her skin. According to the doctor, the hamster had been there so long, one of Wiggins sores began to heal around the rodent, sealing it into her skin. This created the foul smell that was emanating from her body.

Unfortunately for the little boy, he witnessed the entire incident of Teddy Bear being removed from his mother’s back fat.

The claim was republished across dozens of fly-by-night "viral news sites" after it originally appeared:


However, this article (like all of Now8News's content) was fabricated.  The attached image was taken from a video about a woman named Pauline Potter, which was published to YouTube in January 2013 and unrelated to any hamster deaths.

Previous Now8News hoax articles (many of which were also circulated across numerous "viral news" sites) included claims a man had sex with a pig in a Walmart bathroom, aborted fetuses were found in McDonald's Chicken McNuggets, Walmart bananas were infested with a deadly parasitic worm, a woman was found engaging in a sex act with a sausage at a Walmart, a different woman was arrested for "trying on" feminine hygiene items in an aisle at a Walmart, a man fed his unfaithful fiancee's remains to her unsuspecting parents, and a woman gave birth to twins in a casket after being buried alive by her husband.

Kim LaCapria is a former writer for Snopes.

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