GARDAÍ HAVE helped rescue a wild hedgehog who got itself into a very prickly situation in County Donegal.
Members of An Garda Síochána have been undertaking a campaign of community policing since the coronavirus pandemic hit Irish shores, helping countless people with food deliveries, checking in on the vulnerable and helping children celebrate their birthdays under lockdown-- but its not just humans the Gardaí are helping out.
In Letterkenny, Detective Sergeant Galvin and Detective Garda McGonigle came across a hedgehog who had somehow gotten stuck inside an empty takeaway container while searching for food.
The Gardaí posted a video of the heartwarming moment the officers helped free the poor creature, with the caption 'Everything 'quill' be ok!'-- and the video quickly went viral around the world.
In the footage, the distressed animal can be seen wandering a quiet road at night, with an empty milkshake container-- almost as big as the hedgehog itself-- lodged stubbornly on its head.
"The poor wee hedgehog's got his head stuck," one of the officers comments.
As the officer goes closer, the hedgehog can be seen using its tiny paws to try and pull the container off, but to no avail.
The kind-hearted Garda gently removes the container with a triumphant "Now for ye!" and, as if hardly believing his luck, the hedgehog stands still for a moment before the Garda sends him away with a typically Irish "Good lad, good luck."
The video has found its way onto multiple social media platforms and viral video websites, with the original video from Donegal Gardaí drawing hundreds of comments from delighted animal lovers.
"A very happy ending, well done to the garda," one woman wrote. "You certainly were meant to be there. Heroes."
Many others pointed out that this was the sad reality of what happens to wildlife when people leave their litter behind them, with one man thanking the Gardaí for the rescue but adding, "Folks this is what happens when you throw your litter on the ground.
"Have a bit of consideration for our wildlife if you haven't got it for yourself."
Check out the video below, and remember to always take your litter with you!