When you talk about animals in war, most people immediately think of military working dogs, who continue to serve with U.S. troops in support of the Global War on Terror. However, horses, camels, elephants, and birds have all been used to incredible effect in dramatically different locations, wars, and eras.

There’s Cairo, the military working dog who went with Seal Team Six during the May 2011 mission to kill Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad, Pakistan. In World War I, horses were used as mobile weapons platforms, pack animals, and to tow artillery to the front lines, and they paid a heavy price with roughly 8 million dying during the Great War, according to Jilly Cooper’s “Animals in War.” During the same war, when a group a American soldiers were pinned down between a German onslaught and friendly fire during the last major battle of World War 1, a carrier pigeon named Cher Ami, was dispatched to tell the Allied troops to cease fire. The bird flew 25 miles, was shot in the chest, blinded in one eye and lost a leg, but delivered the message and stopped the shelling.

Even as recently as World War II, elephants, the tanks of ancient warfare, were used by James Howard “Billy” Williams, an elephant trainer who helped British troops fight a guerilla war against the Japanese military in what was then Burma.

But, there are some war animals who don’t get a lot of attention. I’m talking about the weird ones — the slimy, bizarre and awkward creatures who have gone to war, or let’s be real, been used in war.

Here are four totally unexpected war animals.

See All Four at Task and Purpose