Sophie the Giraffe has been a favourite among teething kids for decades. Despite the toy’s popularity, parents are warning against a possible health risk.
Multiple parents have shared pictures online showing mould growing inside the chew toy.
Pediatric dentist, Dana Chianese told Good Housekeeping that she noticed a musty smell inside Sophie The Giraffe while trying to clean it.
"I decided to cut into Sophie out of curiosity and discovered a science experiment living inside," Chianese told the publication. "Smelly, ugly mould living in my infant's favourite chew toy!"
The mum added that she always follows the cleaning instructions. "It still hurts my heart to know that for months I allowed my babies to chew on mouldy toys," she says.
Another mum took to Amazon to share her horror when she cut the legs off her Sophie toy.
"Beware!! If you have a drooly baby, moisture will get in the hole and you'll end up with mould, she wrote on Amazon. "We've had ours for two years and the entire inside is coated with black mould!"
Vuilli, the Sophie The Giraffe manufacturer, based in France, released a statement to The Huffington Post UK pointing out that mould may appear if the cleaning instructions aren’t followed.
“It’s important to know that Sophie The Giraffe is composed of 100% natural rubber, so the cleaning instructions have to be carefully respected,” the company stated.
The statement continued: “As indicated on the packaging and in an explanatory leaflet inside the packaging, we recommend to clean the surface of Sophie The Giraffe with a damp cloth.
“It should not be immersed in the water nor rinsed off, to prevent water from getting inside, as she may become damaged. We thus would like to emphasise on the fact that it is important while cleaning the product, that no water gets inside the hole.
“Furthermore, please know that the safety of children and satisfaction of their parents is our main priority.”