Iraqi Hedge

Cuteness is worldwide, as you know, and here’s proof. "Specialist C." writes:

"While I was overseas in Iraq, my commander Captain H. found a wild hedgehog being threatened by a python of some sort. Being the kind-hearted man he was, he rescued the poor little bugger, and
brought him to my office so we could release him into our marginally safer area of post (we had a strict policy against snakes in that AO).

Enjoy! I love your site. When the days in the Army get too dark, I open up Cute Overload and get my leavening of sweetness. Thanks!"


No, thank you, Specialist C.!



  1. punkpie says:

    so cute! 🙂

  2. What a sweet pic and a sweet story! 🙂

  3. poopmonster says:

    awwwwwwwwwww!!! adorable.

  4. Weapons of Mass Cuteness FOUND!

  5. That “no snakes allowed on base” thing is just inviting jokes, right there…

    But all this hedgie is inviting is snorgles.

  6. michelle says:

    Wild hedgehogs?

  7. he’s like a wittle teddy bear in a hedgie outfit!

  8. Oh the little twinker! I love his sweet little (terrified) face. They should keep him and make him their mascot. Prickly on the outside, soft on the inside, just like the CO who saved him.

  9. Awwwwwwwww.
    I’m melting. Thank you Specialist C.!

  10. Danger-UXC (Unexploded Cuteness)

    Handle With Care – BEF commands you!

  11. xiii.lucky says:

    aww what a sweety!! do you guys remember POPPLES? he looks like wee prickly ball’o love!!!

  12. OMG, you can’t even see his feet – he’s a little ball o’ spines!

  13. Tony James says:

    I don’t know that a python would be a match for a hedgehog – given that it’s a constrictor, surely if it tried to wrap around Mr. Pricklestein here he would turn into a something resembling a long thin colander.
    But what a cute widdle ball o’prickly proshness 🙂

  14. The ear…the ear is killing me….
    Middle eastern hedgies…cuter than ‘Merican Hedgies? My sources say SQEEEEEEEEEEEE!


    1. Pull pin on hedgehog.

    2. Roll into suspicious area.

    3. After initial cuteness has incapacitated those inside[listen for thunks and brain pops], proceed carefully.

    4. Retrieve hedgehog for later use. Reward with Hedgehog Ration #GF4-H4552

  16. As a hedgehog owner myself, it’s suprising how friendly this wild guy is (believe me, showing his face is friendly — when they are afraid/pissed off they roll into an incredibly tight ball)

  17. MIKE G—LOL!

  18. What a great story. And what a cute hedgehog.

    “something resembling a long thin colander” LOL!

    Good one, Mike G.

  19. Laurie C says:

    Some kind of neat synthesis is going on — Cute Overload just got mentioned in the weekly essay on my *other* favorite site,, in a baseball piece, no less.

    (No, Hedgie, no one’s going to throw you like a baseball, no matter how tight you roll yourself up.)

  20. christina r says:

    ok sorry but he actually looks kinda soft… are hedgehogs soft never felt one… idk but he sure does look soft

  21. jenni joon says:

    Many prickly-spined thanks to Specialist C for sending us international cuties like Iraqi Hedgie! And since I’m feelin’ all Hallmark-like here, most importantly, take care of yourself over there. Glad C.O. brightens your day.

  22. Private 1st Class Pricklestein reporting for duty sir! Was almost abushed by the enemy sir, but thanks to the quck response team, here to sign up for another tour of cuteness! Whooyaa!

  23. I’d never noticed before how cute their little faces are…

  24. C Rations have now become Cute Rations.

  25. Hedgie at full alert with all armor on, SIR!

  26. Jaxotea says:

    Has to be a contender for the next t-shirt….

    Specialist C – Thanks and Take care over there.

  27. TeratoMarty says:

    I’m finding something incredibly dear about big, strong man’s hands gently cradling the spiky, prosh hedgie. Contrast is cute!

  28. Lillith says:

    That’s a sweet story. Its nice to see C.O. is perfoming the all important morale-lifting cuteness for the Armed Forces.

  29. daphnegirl says:

    If you look at it juuuust right…at the leetle spines under his nose, they look like fingers all crossed in a kind of evil-genious-plotting way…he’s saying, “eeexcellent…I haf egained access to their enecampement…now it is for me to …TAKE OVER ZE WORLT!”

  30. ugh! LOVE this shot. I want my son’s first pet to be a hedgehog. hopefully dad won’t want to add a snake to the pet parade later in life, huh.

  31. Dustbunny says:

    In a related story, the Pentagon refused to confirm that the python was being held for questioning.

    The government meanwhile insisted it had never intercepted any hedgie/python communications, with or without a warrant.

  32. Well, thank goodness that hedgie is safe in Iraq and not in a rack!

  33. Thank you for serving our country and being kind to little animals!

  34. Thank you for serving our country and being kind to little animals!

  35. Aubrey: “Hedgies in Iraq”

  36. Eeeek, Aubrey, “Hedgies ‘n Racks” is making me shudder! Cuteness WILL incapacitate the world, Mike G. – Hedgie has a knowing look in his eyes, hehe. I LOVE this picture!

  37. tablemountaingirl says:

    Thank you Specialist C, for bringing some cuteness into our lives! This little guy is great, and what a terrific story. Thanks so much for your service, and I am glad you get some virtual cuteness to help your days!

  38. AuntieMame says:

    It looks like an extra-prickly kiwi fruit.

    Thank you, Specialist C (and Captain H!), and stay safe!

  39. That is the best story!

    I always think that this site is the light that shines thru most of the darkness that’s on the web!Cute overload is my daily happy!

  40. I just want to say Thank You Specialist C. for all that you are doing to keep America safe

    Much Respect

  41. Whoa, I get all busy at work and this is what I miss. What a fantastic post. TEH QUTE supports our troops!

  42. Specialist C. – I hope you were able to keep that sweet little hedgie on as a mascot. I know that a cuddle a day helps keeps the blues at bay – and that lil’ face would brighten up anyone’s day! I also wanted to say I hope you and everyone else out there stays safe. I’m prayin’ for ya, kid – come home soon and come home healthy!

  43. Meow House says:

    Now that’s a Meals Ready To Eat (Cuteness Flavor)!

    (now now, don’t be worried, nobody is really going to eat him)

    Specialist “C”: thanks for the story and thanks for your sacrifice and patriotism!

  44. This story and picture made my day…thank you so much.
    Compassion is something we all need more of..along with empathy.

  45. CO is a worldwide relief effort. Meg, did you ever think what a great comfort you’d offer to an entire world?!

    Specialist C–thanks for all your dedication and kindness.

  46. Meow House says:

    And Captain H! Thank you too!

  47. lauowolf says:

    Of course you don’t see his feet.
    He doesn’t need feet.
    People pick him up and carry him.
    (Ubercuteness pays)

  48. ahhh!! look how he curls up

  49. i have a friend in iraq who has surreptitously adopted an orphaned kitten. that baby kitty is helping keep my friend alive.

    specialist c, your story brought tears to my eyes. i’m glad you’ve been able to maintain your appreciation of teh cute while in the middle of hell. glad your heart isn’t hardened.

    be safe and secure! and thank you…for the story, and for your work.

  50. That is so adorable. I never really thought about where hedgehogs are native from…it would be odd to see one “in the wild!”

  51. Actually, hedgehogs are snake immune. The teeth can’t get through the spikes. Their organs are somewhat immune to poisons, and a constrictor – well, I’ll leave that up to your imagination.

    So, you’ll just have to enjoy that cute face even more!

  52. Driver B says:

    Where are the feets?!?! So cute!

  53. Michelle says:

    That’s one of the cutest picture/stories I’ve ever seen. Daphnegirl’s comment is one of the funniest. Have I mentioned lately how much I love CO?

  54. I’m so glad you posted this and the story. It’s nice to know that the people in the sandbox can still see something so pure and recognize it for what it is.

  55. I’m so glad you posted this and the story. It’s nice to know that the people in the sandbox can still see something so pure and recognize it for what it is.

  56. *snorgles the hedgie*
    ow ow ooowwwww
    It was worth it.

  57. Carlisa says:

    Thank you Specialist C and Captain H. for sharing this cute hedgie pic and touching story. Thank ALL of you serving over there and we look forward to your safe return. God Bless!

  58. Hi, again, Carlisa!! glad you’re back. :))

  59. JessJess says:

    I don’t know what’s sweeter, the hedgehog or the fact that this site is some sort of relief for our troops out there.

  60. Carlisa says:

    Hi Jaypo! Thanks! Glad to have a chance to join in :o)

  61. this whole time i’ve been paying for acupuncture? i should have just been snorgling hedgehogs.

  62. Such a great story. Nice to hear about a touch of humanity in that hot spot. *hedgehog snorgle*
    *Specialist C & Captain H hugs*

  63. You know, I’m a college age male. I have better things to do all day then “pet” a digital photo of a hedgehog with my mouse cursor while asking “Awwwhosafuzzy?” in a ridiculous voice. Yet here I am. Thanks a lot.

    In all seriousness, this is my favorite entry on the whole site. That snout! Those ears! Thanks for bringing this to us.

  64. Oh! The funny li’l face! He’s like a tiny grenade of pure love!

  65. weapons-grade cute!

  66. Juniper says:

    i googled it up, turns out desert hedgies EAT snakes, along with scorpions and other nasties! (maybe not such huge snakes tho…)

    sounds like captain pricklypants is really fighting to make the world a cuter place! (as if those wittle ears weren’t enough)

  67. I’m in love totally cutifully in love

  68. Lovely hedge.

    BTW, most hedgehogs are wild animals. The hedges that are kept as pets are crossbreeds from 2 desert-dwelling African strains.

  69. What a lovery hedgehog!

  70. that is suck a cute little guy. and i am glad that he fell into such good hands with the men that are defending our country. thank you for that (both things 😉 ) take care over there.

  71. Jeannie says:

    I’m a vet and wish we’d had cute overload when I was in the army. I work for DoD as a civilian now, though, and I can’t TELL you how often, when having a hard day or caught in Excel Hell, I turn for a 5 minute Cute Overload break. Many thanks! Hang in there, SPC C! We’re all praying for your safe return and for the Iraqi people’s safety, as well. Bless you.

  72. Squee! I wish my boyfriend had had something that cute to play with when he was over there! I think it would have made him a much happier boy.

  73. OMG… that’s actually not the first middle eastern army hedgehog I’ve seen. A couple years ago, a friend of mine who was over there sent out piccys of a hedgehog that her unit in Saudi Arabia had adopted.

    Is it just me, or are hedgehogs the cutest things ever? The world should unite in peace and brotherhood over the cuteness of hedgies.

  74. It’s so nice to see other hedgies worldwide, and thanks for rescuing this hedgie. Even wild, he’s adorable and willing to show his face. I’ve got 3 hedgies and I wanted to adopt that hedgie. Thanks for rescuing and taking care. Hope you make it back home safely in the future.

  75. Come home to us safely. Give the pricklebaby a kiss for us all. Bless you and your colleague for your sweet kind heart and your courage.