What We Like
Cute look and design
Multiple learning features
What We Don't Like
Pull string is too short
Singing voice isn’t enjoyable
Another battery-operated plastic toy
By the time your child has turned 1, he or she has probably accumulated a lot of toys. My son sure did! However, all I really want for my toddler is a few great options that will engage him and help with his development and motor skills as he grows. I decided to see if the VTech Pull and Sing Puppy fit the bill. The battery-operated plastic dog boasts a ton of great features meant to entertain and educate, and it’s cute to boot. So when my son woke up from a nap, I surprised him with this toy. Was it engaging or did it end up at the bottom of the toy box? Read on to find out.
Design: Cute look, but a few design flaws
This plastic, battery-operated toy takes the form of an adorable black and white puppy, which my son loves. Every time we see a dog, he points and says, “dog!” The VTech dog carries a key ring in its mouth and has colorful buttons on its side. A pull string extends from his collar, which kids can pull to activate music and sounds. His nose flashes along with the noises.
The string was too short for my son, though, and when he played with it, he just sat down on the ground and pushed it around. When not in use, the string can be tucked into a storage compartment. On the dog’s back is a switch that controls the volume (choose either low or high) and turns the toy on and off. There’s also automatic shut-off.
The string was too short for my son, though, and when he played with it, he just sat down on the ground and pushed it around.
Entertainment Value: Fell short with our toddler
I was initially excited for my son to play with this toy, which plays songs, melodies, and sounds. It seemed like it would be a win! However, once the “new toy joy” wore off in a day or two, my son barely touched it again. And when he was playing with, he wasn’t as engaged as he is with other toys that he loves and has had for a while.
Once the ‘new toy joy’ wore off in a day or two, my son barely touched it again.
As a parent, I didn’t feel that the singing voice was appealing at all. We have a lot of singing toys, and this was probably the worst one; I just wanted it off!
Educational Value: Playful introduction to different concepts
According to VTech, the buttons on the side promote fine motor skill development, and the phrases encourage language learning. Through the songs and sounds, the toy also introduces numbers, colors, and parts of the body.
Age Range: Better for an older infant than for toddlers
VTech recommends this toy for ages 6 months to 3 years. Based on my experience, I would recommend it for those in the younger age group. In my opinion, those older than a year would be even less engaged than my child was, but an infant might find it more appealing.
The Pull and Sing Puppy is currently available for less than $13, so it’s definitely an affordable toy if you are on a budget.
Ease of Cleaning: Wipe with damp cloth
If you need to give this dog a bath, simply wipe clean with a damp cloth. Obviously, you shouldn’t submerge, as it’s an electronic toy containing batteries. There were no specific directions for the string (which is the only non-plastic part of the toy), but I think if needed, I would just clean with a little bit of gentle soap and water and let air dry.
Price: A budget buy
The Pull and Sing Puppy is currently available for less than $13, so it’s definitely an affordable toy if you are on a budget. The two AAA batteries required are included in the package, but they’re just for demo purposes. You’ll need to replace them with fresh ones (simply unscrew the battery cover). Overall, you get what you pay for: The low price is evident in the low engagement level.
VTech Pull and Sing Puppy vs. VTech Roll and Surprise Train
We have a few VTech toys, and the one that my son plays with the most is the VTech Roll and Surprise Train. Its available at about the same price point as the Pull and Sing Puppy, features a pull string, and plays a wide variety of songs, melodies, sounds, and phrases. However, it is much more engaging. It features three mechanical knobs that your child can push, slide, or turn to pop up colorful animal characters. The animal part is challenging, making the toy more engaging. My son was so determined to get each one and then close the lids and do it all over again (and again, and again). In my opinion, the Roll and Surprise Train is definitely the winner here and one that I would gift any tot.
- Product Name Pull & Sing Puppy
- Product Brand VTech
- MPN 80-502800
- Price $12.97
- Weight 13.3 oz.
- Product Dimensions 4.2 x 7.9 x 6.7 in.
- Required Batteries 2 AAA batteries (included for demo purposes)
- Manufacturer Recommended Age Range 6-36 months