Almost every year, there seems to be at least one toy that stores can't seem to keep stock of. In years past, we've seen the craze has been for toys likeTickle Me Elmo, Cabbage Patch Kids or Webkinz. This year, the rage is all about Zhu Zhu pets.
These little guys are made to look like real hamsters, so that children can have a closely simulated experience to owning a real pet. This is leaps and bounds past toy pets of even a year or so ago by incorporating real hamster like motion and activity without the need to actually take care of one or the risk losing a cherished pet.
But what makes it worth the money? Live hamsters themselves can be found for as little as 8-9 dollars a piece, but the abundance of accessories to make a play land for them can get costly in a hurry. Certainly anyone can see the perk of not having to clean cages or replace food and water every day, but many are concerned with the educational values of this type of toy. These people believe that the kids aren't learning real responsibility to care for an animal, when it never dies or needs any cleaning up after.
Some parents will get their child a Zhu Zhu pet to satisfy his or her curiosity about pets or in lieu of a real one. While these pets can't replace the responsibility of caring for a live pet, one point to consider is that your child might not be ready for a pet and all that has to happen to successfully look after a hamster, or any pet. But caring for a Zhu Zhu pet, might inspire a greater response to caring for a creature than you imagined.
A point to be made is that not all kids are ready to have pets. Take for example a two year old who loves an older friend's or sibling's hamster and always wants to play with it. A parent may not feel in good conscience that getting the child a hamster is the right thing because a very young child is simply not able to properly care for one. The same child, however, care for a Zhu Zhu Pet without any fear of it being hurt or dying.
The cool thing about the Zhu Zhu pet is that it really is like having a hamster without the mess. From real hamster sounds, to an exploration mode similar to the behavior of real hamsters, this is the closest thing to having one. Along with the exploration, the hamster also features the "loving mode" which allows kids to hold their hamsters close and hear noises reacting directly to human contact that a real hamster would.
Zhu Zhu Pets might be the next Tickle Me Elmo or Furbee and are only a hot commodity for a season. They might soon be forgotten about. But, they are admittedly quite cute, so you should consider getting a Zhu Zhu for your little one and to let them experience the fun of having a pet, or maybe just having a new pet, without the messy tasks of caring a pet that no one likes.
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