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I have four children so tend to buy their Christmas present through the year to spread the cost. I always check UKhotdeals and money saving expert for the latest deals and glitches, and that is how I came across this lovely bear. Argos had a huge toy sale back in May and this cute little bear was available for just £4 which is a huge bargain compared to its £20 retail price. There is no need to add batteries as these are supplied when you buy the bear and have lasted 4 months so far without any tiring of the voice.
When picking this up from store I was very impressed. For my money came an adorable brown bear with a bottle to feed her. She was presented in a clear box that would be sure to attract any little girl instantly. We received the brown bear, but they are available in different colours. She is named Honey bear but of course my little girl has chosen her own name. Argos does not seem to sell this version anymore, (probably why they were being sold off cheap) but they are available on Amazon and other online retailers.
The first thing you notice when removing the bear is just how incredibly soft she is. Her fuzzy fur is so huggable, and I even found myself tempted to give her a squeeze. She has a lovely pink body suit on with bees and flowers instantly attracting a child's attention. Her whole body is soft which makes it perfect for carrying around or enjoying as a soft toy. The idea is to feed the bear her bottle and generally look after. If you squeeze her tummy she yawns, gets the hiccups and giggles all to my daughter delight. It is a simple toy but something that really appealed to my little girl.
Of course the first thing my daughter wanted to do was feed the bear her bottle. You need to push the bottle into an opening in the mouth for it to activate the sensor, and then by magic the bear begins to enjoy her milk. It can be a little hard to push the bottle into place at times, but as it has been used more this has definitely become easier. When the bear is full she begins to hiccup and this is a sign that she is ready for other love and attention. My daughter has lost the bottle a few times, but any dolls bottle seems to work. You can also place you finger in the bears mouth and she will still make the corresponding noises.
By pressing the tummy of the bear you are greeted with giggles, yawns and hiccups again. This seems to run on a loop and indicates whether the bear wants to play or just go to sleep. The bear giggles so when your little one plays games with them they are delighted at making the bear laugh. It is great for pushing the imagination. It is a role play toy as the bear needs to be cared for, and my little girl loves her 'pet bear'. She really enjoys caring for her toy and it is a great distraction for when they want to help out with baby. The activation button is very easy to find despite being hidden under lots of big thick fur. This is what I like the battery pack and mechanics are all well hidden in the toy so it just feels like a soft bear.
This toy has received a fair amount of use. It gets used often but for short periods as my daughter becomes bored quickly with it. It does get used nearly every day which for four months in our house is an achievement. Compared to other Furreal variations we have seen this is one of the simpler ones with less interactive features, but this just makes it perfect for a younger girl. My little girl is four and I would say that is the perfect age for this toy as she can use it easily, and there is enough to keep her happy. The bear responds really well and there are no fiddly parts, so perfect for smaller hands. The bear only reacts when it is receiving play, so it saves batteries and there is no annoying tune to try and entice the child back.
My one main downside is that the bear is incredibly difficult to clean. The fur seems to attract every single smudge from my daughter's hand, and because of the materials it is made from it becomes rather matted after you wash it. You need to brush the bear after sponging it down, but my daughter enjoys this as it is just another way to care for her. It has left the bear looking less than perfect, but her fur is still dreamily soft. The clothes the bear wears are not removable. Again it would have been nice to put them in the wash, but they are wipe clean only. Also my daughter has tried many times to get the bear undressed without success, and she was not very impressed.
My little girl really loves this bear, and while it does not hold her attention for long periods it is one of her most loved Christmas presents. It is a perfect soft toy but still has interactive features to boost your child's imagination. My little girl can play independently and she loves having a pet to take care of. This is an older toy in the collection and it can be purchased at Amazon for around £20. It is also available online at eBay and a number of other places. For the price we paid I think this was a great find, and I would have been willing to pay around £20 for it anyway