Safety and softness for your little people are of the utmost importance to us here at Dou-Dood HQ, that's why all our toys undergo strict safety testing before sale. We also make it our business to know that all our suppliers commit and work to FairTrade standards, especially including no child labour.
All Dou-Doods toys are tested to the following international safety standards. They test the toy for their suitability for a child from birth to three years of age. This includes the mechanical and physical properties of the toy, flammability and chemical composition (this means testing of the fabrics and dyes to ensure they are 100% safe for baby to snuggle and suck).
EN71-2: 2011 + A1: 2014
EN71-3:2013 + A1: 2014
Formaldehyde EN71 - 9/10/11
AZO Dyes as per REACH regulations 1907/2006 (Annex XVII)
All toys wether sold commercially or independently as "handmade" should undergo safety testing, however many do not. Please check all your toys for CE markings before you buy.
SAFETY AND USING A COMFORTER/DOUDOU TO SLEEP
Understandably a lot of mums often worry about how to use a comforter/doudou in the early days/months of their new baby's life. As long as you understand about safe sleeping then the use of a doudou shouldn't be a problem. Your Dou-Dood comforter can be included as part of the baby's nap time or sleep time routine from an early age. Firstly it is important to transfer your 'mama scent' to the doudou so baby recognises the familiar smell (stick it down your top for a day). Then start using it as part of babies bedtime routine by cuddling with it while you feed, read or sing before bed. Always remove the doudou as soon as the baby is left unattended. Please always ensure baby's head and face remain uncovered at all times. Studies have also shown that simply being able to see their "comfort item" is enough of a comfort for baby, so you can also place it in baby's line of sight.
The website 'Red Nose' has written this reassuring article on the guidelines for the use of a comforter during sleep. They refer to an attachment/transitional object such as a comforter/doudou for children over the age of 7 months.
The website 'The Sleep Lady' also talks about a baby’s need for a transitional object normally occurring around 6-8 months of age. That certainly doesn't mean you have to wait until 7 months to use a comforter/doudou. We found that this was much earlier with our little lady so introduced her doudou when she was about 3 months old.
It's important that you monitor the wear and tear of a favourite toy, as over time they can become quite worn. It's always the 'worn' bits that help the babes self-soothe the most (like the rubbed through ears and feet). Normal wear and tear is of no real concern, it's just being vigilant to observe if the actual safety of a toy has been compromised. And if so, it is best to replace it.
Our little Doods make the perfect newborn gift as they grow with baby taking on more character as baby’s imagination and understanding develop, they become more that just a comfort object they become their best friend along life’s’ great, big new adventures. Plus they love posing for a photo!
HISTORY AND MEANING OF THE WORD 'DOUDOU'
An little peek into the history and meaning of the word 'doudou'. As a parent I think of the word 'doudou' to mean a soft piece of fabric which is used as a comforter for babies and toddlers. As a child I always had a ‘doudou’. It was a soft blankie I dragged around around everywhere with me and couldn’t go to sleep without it.
And as the name suggests it has its origins in French, but it is actually Creole French (French spoken in the West Indies) from the word 'doux' meaning 'sweet' and is also used as a term of endearment or girlfriend or boyfriend or lovie.
The Website 'Speak French' describes a doudou as a 'blankie' and states that it is not derived from the word 'dormir' to sleep but from 'doux' meaning 'sweet' as above. The word 'dodo' however does come from 'dormir' and means to go to sleep or nap.
The website The Lullaby Trust is also a great source of information and support. Safer sleep for babies, Support for Families.