Zhu Zhu Pets Hamster Toy Safety Questioned

Federal regulators are investigating the popular Zhu Zhu Pets Hamsters following claims by a consumer advocacy group that the toys contain high levels of toxic substances.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has begun an investigation to determine whether the Zhu Zhu Pets “Mr. Squiggles” toy hamster contains levels of antimony that exceed regulatory standards, according to a report by NBC News.

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The consumer advocacy group Good Guide, which rates the hottest Christmas toys every year, raised questions about the safety of Zhu Zhu Pets hamsters, indicating that their own testing shows that the fur and nose of the toys have high amounts of the substance, which can be lethal at very high levels.

Antimony is a substance used to make fabrics flame retardant. However, it is toxic, and can cause dizziness, depression and headaches at low levels. Prolonged exposure can result in lung and heart problems, as well as ulcers and diarrhea. At high levels, it can cause violent, severe vomiting and death.

Federal regulations limit the amount of antimony to a maximum of 60 parts per million. GoodGuide says its own tests revealed that the Zhu Zhu hamsters contained levels between 93 and 106 parts per million.

If CPSC investigators find that the toy has levels of antimony that exceed federal standards, they could potentially call for a Zhu Zhu Pets recall.

The manufacturers, Cepia LLC, released a press release on December 5 saying that the toy hamsters are safe. “We are disputing the findings of Good Guide and we are 100% confident that Mr. Squiggles, and all other Zhu Zhu Toys, are safe and compliant with all U.S. and European standards for consumer health and safety in toys,” said Russ Hornsby, Cepia LLC CEO.

The company says that it tested the toys multiple times and did not find the high levels of antimony found by GoodGuide. The company’s statement also said that the results of its tests have been certified by independent testing organizations. Cepia LLC released some of the testing data on its website.

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  • U.S. CPSC Dismisses Concerns Over Zhu Zhu Pets - AboutLawsuits.comDecember 8, 2009 at 3:05 pm

    [...] that rates the hottest Christmas toys every year, released a report on Saturday that indicated Zhu Zhu Pets hamsters contain toxic levels of antimony, a heavy metal that can cause severe illness, heart and lung problems. However, according to a [...]

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