Mold Found In “Sophie The Giraffe” Teething Toys Spark Parents’ Concerns

A number of parents are voicing serious concerns about the safety of “Sophie the Giraffe” teething toys, after discovering mold growing inside that may pose a health risk for infants.

Information posted to social media suggests that mold may grow within the rubberized outer coating of “Sophie the Giraffe” infant toys, without any external indication. It appears the only way for parents or caregivers to check for mold is to cut the teething toys open.

The stories were first reported by Good Housekeeping, which showed pictures and provided detailed descriptions from parents who found the entire inside covered with mold after their infants had been playing with and chewing on the toys for months.

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The popular “Sophie the Giraffe” toys were first introduced in 1961, as a squeaky toy advertised to be made out of 100% natural rubber. Infants typically chew on the toys, particularly when they are teething.

Some of the reports have indicated the moisture from a baby’s drool can enter the toy through the air hole that allows the toy to squeak, without any way of escaping. When moisture enters the toy and sits dormant without any means of being washed or dried, mold growth is almost inevitable.

One report from a New Jersey mother indicates that she discovered the issue one day when the air being released from the toy smelled musty, leading her to cut the toy open. After cutting the toy open she discovered the entire inside of the Giraffe toy her child had been chewing on was covered in mold.

Mold can cause a wide variety of symptoms, ranging from sneezing, runny or stuffy nose, itchy eyes, throat and nose, to more severe respiratory problems. Those with mold allergies can experience wheezing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness that may develop into more severe conditions if the exposure is prolonged and left untreated.

No official statement has been released by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission or other regulatory agencies, but the manufacturer is warning parents and caregivers that moisture from a baby’s drool or washing the teething toy could cause potential mold growth from water infiltration.

Parents are being advised that instead of submerging the toy in water to clean it they should clean the surface with a damp cloth and check the toys air release port periodically for a musty smell that could indicate mold growth. Parents with concerns that the toys may contain mold are being encouraged to discard them.


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