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How to Choose a Stuffed Animal
Choosing the right type of plush toy can be tough. Should it be a dinosaur or a unicorn? What about a penguin? With Kohl's extensive selection of plush toys at your fingertips, the easiest way to pick the perfect plush is to make the choice personal. Take into consideration if your child is drawn to a specific type of animal or if they have a particular interest. Keep in mind your plush purchase doesn't have to be an animal at all. It could be their favorite cartoon character, creature or historical figure. The options are endless. However, the first step in making your decision is to consider your child's age.
If you are buying for your little bundle of joy, there are a laundry list of things you have to consider. Does the toy have removable parts? Is it "swallow-safe"? A swallow-safe toy will not contain any parts that can be easily removed and get dislodged in your child's throat. So that means checking each piece carefully, particularly those parts that are glued on or are made of yarn, ribbon, or string. Smaller toys are always a good choice because they are often one-piece plushes and they are easier for tiny hands to hold.
Buying for tiny tots still takes some consideration. Similar to buying for a baby you have to consider any potential choking hazards. With that being said, it also comes with a new set of challenges. The biggest being durability. Your little one is most likely going to take their new friend with them almost everywhere. That means that whatever toy you choose will need to withstand harsh conditions, spills, messes, tantrums, and everything in between. Buying a medium-sized toy is probably best for this age group because it makes it a little easier to find if it's lost and medium-sized toys are often made a little sturdier for rough and tumble play.
Yes, this includes adults. Let's face it, the kid in you still loves all things cute and cuddly. When it comes to buying plush for big kids, you may want to invest a bit more. More often than not, this plush will find itself as part of a collection. That's why larger plush toys with more detail or unique features are a perfect choice.
Benefits of Plush Toys
Toys are more than a way to engage your little one in play. These deceptively cute creations work as tools to help your little ones develop. By giving your kid a cuddly friend to assist them in the earliest stages of their lives, your child can start to understand and express complex emotions and build fundamental skills that will last them a lifetime. These inanimate objects often represent living things, and in most cases can be considered your kid's first friend. Fueled by imagination, your little one can quickly associate this toy with its real-life counterpart and ultimately begin to attach a persona to it making the toy more real and providing the opportunity for your child to become emotionally attached. Stuffed animals can help teach your child to manage their emotions through self-soothing. Through this attachment, children gain a sense of confidence and independence. In their eyes, they have a friend to comfort and support them. These toys can also help develop speech and language skills. Have you noticed just how much your little one talks to their stuffed friend? These conversations, no matter how nonsensical, are excellent practice to help them learn how to socialize and communicate better. These are just a few of the ways plush pals help kids grow. That's it is imperative that you properly care for them because they are important to your little one and ultimately vital to you as well.
Here are a few tips and tricks to help keep your kids' plush toys in pristine condition:
Washing Stuffed Animals
Making sure your little one's stuffed animal stays clean is important. Not only does it help with the longevity of the toy it also helps ensure your child stays healthy as well. Stuffed animals can harbor germs and dust mites, regularly washing it keeps these critters at bay. Toss your stuffed animal in the wash with warm water and your favorite detergent. If your machine has an agitator, try placing your stuffed animal in a mesh laundry bag or pillowcase first for an added layer of protection. Set it to the gentle/delicate cycle. Once the cycle is complete hang dry the toy. Clamp hangers and hooks are great for this step.
Repairing Stuffed Animals
Unlike their metal counterparts, stuffed toys usually only require a needle and some thread to fix them. Not only is this an excellent way to get your child involved in caring for their doll. It also helps you set the groundwork to do more crafts!
Replacing Stuffed Animals
Your plush purchase will become your child's best friend, and the reality is that being dragged everywhere can lead to some pretty sticky situations. At some point, you may have to replace your little one's best friend. However, before you panic, we have a straightforward solution—buy more than one! When you are initially selecting your child's stuffed animal, we suggest buying a few more and stowing them away for a rainy day. Kohl's Cares offers plush and accompanying books for just $5 each! That's about the cost of your morning coffee. And you can feel good knowing that you are giving back because 100% of the net profit of your purchase goes towards supporting the health and well-being of communities nationwide. It's also a cost-effective way to stock up on quality plush toys. If you are fortunate enough never to have to use this emergency stash, you can always donate or return them. With Kohl's hassle-free returns, it's easier than ever to get your money back or exchange it for something that better suits your family.