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When Can Babies Sleep with a Stuffed Animal? | Baby Shusher Blog

When Can Babies Sleep with a Stuffed Animal? | Baby Shusher Blog

Welcoming a baby into your life is filled with joy, excitement, and a myriad of decisions. Among the many questions parents face is when it’s safe for their little one to sleep with a stuffed animal. Stuffed animals can provide comfort and companionship, but safety is paramount. Read on to explore the right time to introduce a stuffed animal to your baby’s sleep routine, the benefits of doing so, and how to choose the perfect cuddly companion for your child.

When Can Babies Sleep with a Stuffed Animal?

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), it is safest to keep your baby’s sleep environment free of any soft objects, including stuffed animals, until they are at least 12 months old. The primary concern is the risk of suffocation and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). At around one year of age, most babies have the physical ability to move objects away from their face and are at a lower risk for SIDS, making it a safer time to introduce a stuffed animal into their crib.

Always be sure and consult with your pediatrician if you have any concerns about introducing a stuffed animal into their sleep routine.

Benefits of a Stuffed Animal or Lovey

  1. Comfort and Security: A stuffed animal can become a comforting companion for your baby, providing a sense of security during sleep and nap times. This can be particularly helpful during transitions, such as moving to a new room or adjusting to a new sleep schedule.
  2. Emotional Support: Stuffed animals can help babies develop emotional connections and coping mechanisms. They can become a source of reassurance and a way to express emotions, especially as your child grows and starts to experience new feelings and situations.
  3. Sleep Associations: Having a consistent sleep association, like a stuffed animal, can help signal to your baby that it's time to sleep. This can promote better sleep habits and routines, leading to more restful nights for both your baby and you.
  4. Developmental Benefits: Interacting with a stuffed animal can encourage imaginative play and social skills. As your child grows, their stuffed animal can become a part of their pretend play, fostering creativity and cognitive development.


How to Choose the Right Stuffed Animal or Lovey

  1. Size and Softness: Choose a stuffed animal that is small enough for your baby to hold easily but not too small that it becomes a choking hazard. It should be soft and cuddly, without any hard parts that could cause injury.
  2. Safety Standards: Ensure the stuffed animal meets safety standards for children's toys. Look for labels that indicate it is free of harmful chemicals and materials. It should also be securely stitched to prevent any small parts, like buttons or eyes, from coming loose.
  3. Washability: Babies can be messy, so opt for a stuffed animal that is machine washable. This makes it easy to keep the toy clean and hygienic, reducing the risk of allergies or illness.
  4. Age Appropriateness: Select a stuffed animal that is designed for your baby's age group. Toys meant for older children might have small parts or other features that are not safe for infants.
  5. Personal Preference: Consider your baby's interests and preferences. Some babies may have a favorite animal or color, which can make their stuffed animal even more special and comforting.


Introducing a stuffed animal into your baby's sleep routine can bring numerous benefits, from providing comfort and security to supporting emotional and developmental growth. By waiting until your baby is at least 12 months old and choosing a safe, suitable stuffed animal, you can ensure a positive and reassuring experience for your little one. Always prioritize safety and observe your baby's cues, and consult with your pediatrician if you have any concerns.

Shusher Sloth Solution

Looking to introduce a stuffed animal to your little one's sleep routine? The Shusher Sloth is the latest addition to the Shusher family of soothing products designed to make bedtime a breeze for both parents and babies.


This adorable sloth is more than just a stuffed animal - it’s a sleep aid crafted with love and backed by science. With its soft, plush exterior and a removable shushing sound device, the Shusher Sloth is designed to calm and soothe your little one. And, if they aren’t old enough to sleep with a stuffed animal yet, Shusher Sloth can be hooked to the crib or sat on a side table to ensure a safe sleep environment.

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