stuffed animals

  • Scientific Reasons Kids Love Stuffed Animals

    Studies have shown that more than 50 percent of Americans are still hanging on to the teddy bears they had when they were growing up. Even though those teddy bears aren’t as soft and cuddly as they used to be, people keep them for all kinds of reasons. For some, it’s because it provides them with a sense of comfort, while others have held onto their bear for so long now they can’t imagine giving it up.

    The idea of keeping a teddy bear for years and even decades on end might seem silly to some people. However, there are actually scientific reasons for why so many kids—and, by extension, adults—love teddy bears and other stuffed animals so much. Here are a few of the scientific reasons behind it.

    Teddy bears are made to make kids feel safe and peaceful

    It’s human nature for kids to yearn for feelings of peacefulness and safety. Often times, they’re able to find those feelings in the arms of a teddy bear. Studies have shown that kids who spend a lot of time holding a teddy bear tend to feel calmer and more secure than those who don’t.

    Teddy bears can help fill a void

    The average teddy bear can’t walk or talk or offer any real emotional support to a child. Studies have indicated that teddy bears can, however, help kids overcome psychological trauma and fill a void in their lives. They can also make kids feel like they have some control over the things happening in their lives since they’re able to use their imaginations with their teddy bears.

    Teddy bears are designed to prompt affection and nurturing behavior from kids

    There are a lot of studies that have been done on the designs used to create teddy bears. Many have shown that teddy bears are built to have many of the same facial features and proportions as humans. So when kids hug a teddy bear, it makes them feel like they are caring for their teddy as much as they believe their teddy cares for them. Even though this stuffed animal is an inanimate object, a bond is formed.

    Would you like to give a teddy bear or another stuffed animal to a special child in your life? The Zoo Factory has countless options for you to choose from, including farm animals, wild animals, and more. Order yours today!

  • Teddy Bears Bring Tears this Holiday Season

    If you spend any amount of time on social media throughout the past week, you probably saw a lot of heart-warming stories.

    One of our favorite “feel good” stories this holiday season involved, you guessed it: a teddy bear.

    One story that took the world by storm last week was the story of Mariana and Sarahy Ramos, two little girls that received a teddy bear that brought them to tears minutes after pulling them out of their packaging. Their older sister recorded a video of them receiving the gift and shared it on Twitter, and the post went viral within minutes.  The video now has over 100,000 likes and 69,000 shares.

    The Ramos girls lost their grandfather, Florencio Jimenez, last year under tragic. The girls Aunt Andrea purchased the two teddy bears for the girls as their Christmas gifts this year.

    Both teddy bears contained an audio message that their aunt had pulled from a video recording of the girls grandfather before he passed.

    The audio message inside of the bear was an inside joke that the girls had with their grandfather, following the sound of his laugh.

    Their aunt wanted to give them something to remember their grandfather by and a cuddly teddy bear playing the the sound of his voice did the job.

    When the young girls opened the gift on Christmas morning, they were immediately brought to tears Warning, you will be too after watching this clip.

    The Zoo Factory also offers this feature, where you can record your own message to put inside of your bear of choice with a small recording device.

    This is a perfect gift for a loved one for a birthday, a holiday, an anniversary, or just because.

    Whether you are a young child saying “I love you” to your grandmother, or a grandmother saying “I love you” to a young child, it will be a priceless keepsake to your loved one.

  • Open Heart Surgery Patients Get Teddy Bears

    If you have recently visited the cardiac unit of a hospital, you have likely seen teddy bears sitting beside patients on their bed and walking hand in hand with surgeons. Many hospitals have rooms full of teddy bears for patients that get cardiac operations, such as open heart surgery.

    The patients are given these teddy bears as a part of their recovery process. These bears are extremely firm and relatively heavy, serving a very important purpose. The bears are used as a chest brace for the patients.

    After an operation, cardiac patients struggle with severe pain from their stitches. WheOpen Heart Surgery Patients Get Teddy Bears n patients need to cough, sneeze, or laugh, they hug the bear against their chest. Patients struggle after surgery to open the air sacs at the bottom of their lungs which causes frequent and painful coughing spells. Pressing the teddy bear against their chest eases the pain and holds the stitches in place. Patients keep the bear at their side throughout their hospital stay and the bear eventually goes home with the patient, serving as a keepsake for the patient.

    The bears do not shed which ensures the cleanliness of the stitches. The bears are also a full-sized teddy bear which allows patients the ability to easily grab a hold of it and find it. It can easily be found when a patient is lying in bed. If the bear falls out of bed, it can be easily grabbed by an arm or a leg. Many hospitals used to use towels or pillows as a brace which were not as effective and not as cute!

    These bears also become a companion for the patients. After a week or so in the hospital, patients get lonely, itching to go home to their family. These bears provide some company for patients, but most importantly, help them heal appropriately and comfortably. If someone you know just had a major operation, consider getting their cardiac bear a friend from The Zoo Factory.

  • Choosing the Perfect Stuffed Animal for Your Little One

    The holiday season is quickly approaching and soon, parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles will be searching for gifts for the children in their lives. In most cases, you can never go wrong with a stuffed animal. But how do you choose the right one for each of the special children on your list?

    Classic Style

    Think back to the childhood stuffed animal you shared all of your greatest adventures with. Chances are it was a classic teddy bear or another soft and snuggly animal like a rabbit or a dog. We recommend choosing a similar stuffed animal friend for your little one.

    Sure, all of our children love the fun characters they watch on T.V., but it is unlikely that their adoration for this particular character will last. This is why a classic stuffed animal makes such a perfect gift. They will never go out of style, giving them the potential to remain your child’s best friend for years to come.

    Neutral Color

    Not sure what color stuffed animal your child will love most? Instead of choosing a bright color or wild pattern, opt for a neutral, natural color like brown or tan. This way, your child will be able to make their own choices with the stuffed animal, dressing then in fun costumes and clothing that match their own personal style.

    Cuddly Soft

    Another important factor when it comes to finding the perfect stuffed animal is how soft it is! Your child will want a stuffed animal friend that they can hug and snuggle when they need some extra support. And with a Zoo Factory stuffable animal, you will be able to choose exactly how much stuffing you use to create that cuddly feel!

    As the holiday draw near and you start your shopping, head to The Zoo Factory to select the perfect stuffed animals (and outfits) from our online selection. We have everything you need to make this holiday season a special one for the children in your life.

  • Stuff Animals Can Cheer Up Those Suffering From Depression

    Teddy bears and toy stuffed animals are usually our first fuzzy friends. We are given them as toys when we are small and they bring children comfort, joy and a cuddle buddy. But can stuffed animals be more than just playthings?

    According to a study done by the UV University of Amsterdam, people with depression, anxiety and low self-esteem may benefit by owning a teddy bear or two to cuddle with.

    Stuff Animals Can Cheer Up Those Suffering From Depression

    Sander Koole, a lead researcher from the university, reported cuddling with a teddy bear for example can soothe existential fears and can give some sense of existential significance.

    It’s not just UV University of Amsterdam that believes teddy bears can help those feeling extra down. A researcher at Boise State University has been doing research among those with dissociative identity disorder and teddy bears. Rose M. Barlow of the Department of Psychology at Boise State wanted to see if stuffed animals would serve clients equally as well as live animals.

    Barlow surveyed a sample of high and low dissociative female college students and those with dissociative identity disorder (DID) about attachment to live and stuffed animals. She found that the DID women had significantly stronger attachments to both live and stuffed animals than any of the other women. She also found that those with high dissociation and those with DID reported higher levels of attachment to stuffed animals than live animals when compared to the low dissociative group.

    The idea of using stuffed animals to cure depression is not new. Stuffed dogs, cats and teddy bears have been given to children during wartime around the world.

    Tel Aviv University has been using stuffed animals on children from war-torn countries with post-traumatic stress disorder to help them cope. Some children started to express themselves through the stuffed animals, which helped their teachers and parents provide better care for them. A study based on parents’ testimonies showed that 83 percent of the children suffered from stress, separation fears, aggression, excessive crying, nightmares and other issues.

    Just three weeks after receiving the stuffed dogs, children showed improvement. Two month later, 71 percent had lost their severe stress reactions. This is twice as many as the children who didn’t have stuffed dogs.

    A stuffed animal can bring comfort and joy to those who might need a friend but are still wary of stepping out into the world and meeting someone new. Just having something soft to cuddle with can help create a safe space for those who need a little extra help.

    So what do you think?

    Could it be possible that a child’s favorite stuffed animal can help him from feeling depressed or anxious? If nothing else, we know that the bond our sons and daughters can form with these fuzzy friends can be tough to break! Let us know what you think about these studies in the comments section below!

  • Japanese Company Gives Old Stuffed Animals New Life

    child with stuffed animal

    When you think back to your childhood and your favorite stuffed animal, what do you see? If it’s a teddy bear with loose stitching or a missing arm, it is obvious that your stuffed friend was well-loved. And while your mom might have replaced a missing eye with a button, or continually re-stitched the same hole, Second Life Toys – a Japanese campaign created by Dentsu Japan – has found a creative and beautiful way to give new life to old stuffed animals.

    A country that has the lowest rate of organ transplants in the industrialized world, Japan wanted to spread awareness for the concept of organ donation and let individuals across the country know how it works with the help of stuffed animal transplants.

    Participants will take a photograph of their toy for approval, sending the actual animal in for “surgery” through the mail once approved. Animals will be given new life with transplanted limbs, showing individuals that organ donation is an enhancement, not a compensation.

    Examples include a deer with new, fuzzy pink back legs and a white bunny with a new, floral printed ear.

    [embed]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=twRsHV0UByA&feature=youtu.be[/embed]

    This program is especially wonderful for introducing the concept of organ donation to children, and we at The Zoo Factory think it is a beautiful project that combines learning with whimsical fun.

    While there isn’t a program like this to bring new life to U.S. stuffed animals, we do have advice to help keep new stuffed critters in the best shape possible.

    Especially for the stuffed animals that your children play with the most, pay close attention to their seams, checking them regularly for small rips and tears. A little hole under a bears arm is much easier to repair than a missing limb!

    We recommend sewing injuries by hand, keeping stitches close and matching the thread to the fur color.

    It is also important to keep your stuffed friend clean, but just throwing it in the washing machine could cause extra wear.

    Our Teddy Needs a Bath Laundry Bags are the perfect alternative, preventing your children’s treasured stuffed animals from being damaged in the washing machine while providing them with the deep clean necessary to keep them looking their best for years to come.

    For all your stuffable animal needs, visit The Zoo Factory online or contact us by phone at 866-993-3325. Whether you are hosting a birthday party or just looking for a fun activity to do with your kids, stuffing 8” or 16” animals is sure to be a fun time!

  • Unplug and Incorporate Imagination into Playtime

    child reading to stuffed animal

    From the games they play on smart phones and tablets to the shows they watch on Netflix and T.V., children are growing up in a technology centered universe where much of their learning is done in front of a screen. And while laptops and cellphones now play an integral role in our society, we also love the idea of unplugging these devices and just playing! Whether your children decide to put on a play, host a tea party for their stuffed animals or have a family game night, there are so many opportunities to actively learn, building social skills and making memories.

    There are so many ways to incorporate more imagination and creativity into your child’s day, so turn off your electronics for a couple of hours and do one of these fun activities together.

    Host a Family Game Night

    Regardless of what game you play and who the winner is, family game nights are always a ton of fun and offer many different learning opportunities. Board games and card games can teach your children about teamwork, taking turns, thinking ahead and much more. Depending on your child’s age there are even games to help them improve their math, science and reading skills!

    Go Outside

    There is nothing better than spending a day outside enjoying the fresh air and summer sunshine. Whether you walk to the park, go for a bike ride or host a backyard picnic, there are so many great opportunities for play and learning.

    Read a Book

    Instead of sitting down in front of the T.V. before bed, pick out a book and spend some time reading with your children. Depending on their age, you can read to them, help them sound out words or let them read to you and a stuffed animal audience. An opportunity to escape into unknown worlds, books are an incredible way to get your child’s imagination flowing.

    Spend some time talking about the stories you read, discussing alternate endings, other adventures the characters could go on and acting out your own version of the story with a stuffed animal cast. There are so many ways to expand upon your reading adventures, all of which are wonderful outlets for creativity.

    Just Play!

    It doesn’t really matter what you and your children do together during your unplugged afternoons, as long as you are having a good time. If your children love playing with stuffed animals when they are away from technology, The Zoo Factory offers a wide array of stuffable creatures that you can make with your children. Dressed up like a superhero, a sports star or a princess, your child’s stuffed animal can accompany them on all of their unplugged adventures, making playtime even more memorable and fun.

    Visit us online to find a stuffed friend for your child, and don’t forget to pick up a bath bag while you’re there. Your teddy it after all the adventures they share in this summer!

  • Ideas For Dressing Up Your Stuffed Animals For Halloween

    Ideas For Dressing Up Your Stuffed Animals For HalloweenWith Halloween quickly approaching, it’s time to get everyone’s costumes ready; including your stuffed animals. Here at the Zoo Factory, we have everything you will need to make this Halloween super special. We have a large selection of outfits for your children to dress their stuffed friends in, so they can match.

    While we do have an adorable pumpkin costume, your choices don’t end there.

    Superheroes

    With the growing popularity of the Marvel and DC comics, superheroes are a great choice for your stuffed animal or doll. Spider bear or super bear would be a great sidekick for your little superheroes.

    Knights & Princesses

    Princesses are always a popular choice for costumes. Consider dressing your stuffed friend as a princess as well or a medieval knight. Fairies and witches would be a good match as well.

    Careers

    Have a doctor or fireman going out trick or treating? We have the perfect companion outfits. We have doctor and nurse’s scrubs, astronaut suits and a pilot outfit, with the accompanying goggles. There is also a variety of military uniforms as well.

    Sports Uniforms

    Basketball, baseball, hockey soccer, karate and more, your sports star will find the perfect costume for their stuffed animal.

    Don’t forget to check out our pajamas section. After coming home from a long night of trick or treating, everyone (Teddy included) will want to put their pajamas on and relax.

    If you’re looking for the perfect stuffed animals, we can help with over 200 options. At The Zoo Factory, you’ll find everything you need for your stuffed friends and dolls. Contact us today!

  • Fall Camping With Your Stuffed Animals

    Fall Camping With Your Stuffed Animals

     

    Looking back, some of the best childhood memories were from family camping trips that we all took. Away from the technology and busyness, we had the entire time to ourselves and our families.

    If you didn’t get the opportunity to go camping this summer, it actually works out for the better.

    Taking a camping trip during the fall months may prove to be a better time to go for your family. The scenery and fall foliage are beautiful and these picturesque views will make you glad you waited a few months.

    Not only are the views spectacular but the weather isn’t too shabby either. Waking up to crisp morning air will make your coffee and hot chocolate taste even better and the cooler temperatures make hiking and spending time outdoors much more comfortable than the stifling summer months.

    There are a variety of different camp activities for the entire family like apple and pumpkin picking, local festivals and even fishing derbies.

    Many children like to bring their friends along for the camping trip and you’d hate for them to miss out on the fun.

    If you’re thinking of taking your stuffed friend or dolls along for the adventure consider adding these items to your packing list:

    • Let your doll or stuffed animal snuggle up next to you in sleeping bag that fits them just right.
    • Feeling hungry after a long day of apple picking and running through corn mazes? With the Coleman stove you will get a light-up stove, iron skillet, spatula, burger, grilled cheese, fried eggs and bacon.
    • Cool down after a long day hiking with some nice cold drinks from the Coleman cooler. It also comes with two glasses of lemonade with straws.
    • Being afraid of the dark is no longer a problem with our Coleman Lantern!

    With dozens of stuffed animals to choose from and a wide variety of accessories, The Zoo Factory has everything you need for your stuffed animals or dolls and your upcoming camping trip. Please check out our selection and contact us today!

  • Cool Extras To Use At Your Child's Next Stuffed Animal Birthday Party

    Parents are always looking for a way to make their child's birthday party memorable. Whether it is special decorations, a character themed party, awesome games, and prizes, parents of little ones want their child's day to be significant in every way possible.

     

    As we scour through dozens of Pinterest pages, get tips from friends and family and even take notes from the things our little ones say, we still may come up short on an idea.

     

    So what is a parent to do?  Cool Extras To Use At Your Child's Next Stuffed Animal Birthday Party

     

    An ideal birthday party activity is one that can be done with the group and can be a great "thank you" gift for attending. We are not talking about the traditional goody bags filled with candy and fun little trinkets. We are talking about putting together stuffed animals.

     

    Stuffed animals are and will always remain a favorite among little children. At your child's birthday party, why not allow all of the kids to stuff their own friend. This is not only fun but memorable for all involved.

     

    Probably one of the coolest parts of stuffing animals at the birthday party is not just the actual stuffing; it's the creativeness that is put into making the friend unique. You can allow the kids to use their imaginations and draw whatever they want on their animals. Maybe the birthday girl or boy would like all of their friends to sign their animal? Or they can draw pictures of their favorite things like sunshine, rainbows, flowers, and animals.

     

    In addition to fabric markers, we also carry home carry boxes which look like a little house for the stuffed animal and also wishing stars where the children can make a wish upon the star and then place the star in the animal before it closes.

     

    At The Zoo Factory, we have all of the above-mentioned accessories to help make the birthday party stuffed friends personal. For more information or questions on the products we offer, contact us today!

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