In our FurReal Friends Newborns review, we tested a button-cute Dalmatian (starting at $13, Amazon) from the newborn line of mechanical pets with our 8-year-old toy reviewer. Her initial reaction was to "ooh" and "ahh" as the puppy stretched and wriggled and wagged. Soon, however, she honed in on what her automated doggie couldn't do. "I wish he could walk," she lamented. The pooch scored points for snoring when he went into sleep mode, which our tester thought was adorable. She was disappointed that he didn't open his mouth to take the bone included in his packaging, however. This sentiment is echoed in other FurReal Friends Newborns reviews, including one on Amazon that similarly notes the Newborn Piglet's push-button oinking, bowing, and tail wiggling isn't sufficiently entertaining for children older than six or seven.
Parents of toddlers and preschoolers, like these posters on Target and Amazon, say their tots grow attached to their furry friends. A FurReal Friends review on Epinions, on the other hand, reports that older children quickly lose interest because of the limited possibilities for interaction with these toy pets. Our eight-year-old toy tester was ready to move on to other toys after running through a couple cycles of tricks with her FurReal Friends newborn.
There's no denying the cute quotient of these precious pets, and with prices starting at around $12, they make affordable gifts. Most FurReal Friends reviews agree that younger kids find them quite captivating. One last note: while their fur is soft, the internal mechanics keep Fur Real Friends from being as cuddly as they look.