(WTNH)– Reports of mold growing inside a popular baby teething toy has parents horrified. According GoodHouseKeeping.com, there have been several recent complaints from parents who found mold growing inside “Sophie the Giraffe.”
Pediatric dentist Dana Chianese told the magazine’s website that she was cleaning a “Sophie the Giraffe” toy last month when she smelled something musty coming from inside.
“I decided to cut into Sophie out of curiosity and discovered a science experiment living inside. Smelly, ugly mold living in my infant’s favorite chew toy!” said Chianese.
Chianese added that she had always followed the cleaning directions, by using hot soapy water with a damp sponge. She also said she followed instructions that stated to never fully submerge the toy underwater.
“It still hurts my heart to know that for months I allowed my babies to chew on moldy toys,” she told Good Housekeeping. “I no longer buy any chew toys with a hole or recommend any to my patients.”
Chianese wasn’t the only one with the issue. GoodHouseKeeping.com reports that there have been several similar complaints on Amazon.
One Amazon user wrote: “Beware!! If you have a drooly baby, moisture will get in the hole and you’ll end up with mold! We’ve had ours for two years and the entire inside is coated with black mold!”
After the story went viral, a spokeswoman for “Sophie the Giraffe” issued the below statement to Goodhousekeeping.com:
“First of all, it’s important to know that Sophie la Girafe [Sophie the Giraffe] is composed of 100% natural rubber, so the cleaning instructions have to be carefully respected. As indicated on the packaging and in an explanatory leaflet inside the packaging, we recommend to clean the surface of Sophie la Girafe 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 emphasize on the fact that is it important, while cleaning the product, that no water gets inside the hole. As of now, we have not been contacted by Mrs. Chianese … and were not aware of the situation before reading your article. It is thus difficult for us to comment on the current situation, as we haven’t had the chance to examine the products. Please know that each complaint received is taken very seriously and that the return of the product is always asked for further examination. Furthermore, please know that the safety of children and satisfaction of their parents is our main priority. For the past 55 years, we have always strived to exceed security standards and all of our products comply with the most stringent global standards.”