Meet Mr. Pokee, the self-proclaimed “world’s cutest adventurer.” He’s not your average social media pet, he’s a 3-year-old African pygmy hedgehog. Just scrolling through Pokee’s Instagram reveals all the fun places he gets to go, and let’s just say we are very jealous of this well-traveled, spikey little dude.
He’s certainly got a thing for sitting in cups, cones, and anything else his teeny quills don’t pop! Like many pets, this little guy has a lot of needs. His human mom, 25-year-old Talitha Girnus, makes sure he’s well fed and warm in the wintertime.
Though he has been everywhere from Italy to Austria, Mr. Pokee is originally from Germany and lives with Girnus. She said his Instagram account, which now has over 700,000 followers, started off by just sending photos to family and friends when he came into her life over three years ago.
“When I picked Pokee up from the breeder, I immediately fell in love with him. He made me smile, even on the worst days,” Girnus revealed on her website.
It wasn’t long that, judging from the responses from loved ones, she realized that Mr. Pokee had star potential. Finally, she decided to start sharing his photos with the world, and thank goodness she did: His photos now average over 60,000 likes! That’s a lot of hedgehog love.
So why a traveling hedgehog? Girnus says it all started when she decided to study abroad.
“Traveling with Pokee started when I decided to go abroad for a semester. At that point, Pokee was already super tame and used to me but generally shy towards others. Leaving him with my family or a friend for five months was never an option for me,” she explained.
Eventually the traveling duo really took off. The little influencer has become so popular, he even has his own website. Girnus runs the site www.mrpokee.com, where she sells personalized Polaroids, calendars, and T-shirts featuring the unbelievably adorable Mr. Pokee.
Girnus wants to spread joy and happiness to the world through Mr. Pokee, and his fans are loving it. “Between all the serious things going on in this world I wanted to give people a reason to smile — even if just for a little while,” Girnus said.
Additional reporting for this article by Rennie Svirnovskiy
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