13 Best Stuffed Animals To Sleep With In 2024, Sleep Consultant-Approved

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Children love stuffed animal toys and enjoy cuddling and playing with them. So, we have compiled a list of the best stuffed animals to sleep with to help you find a suitable one. Teddy bears and other plush animal toys are intended to be transitional objects. The stuffed animals can provide little ones with a sense of comfort and protection while bringing out their inner nurturer. These best-selling plushies also serve as nighttime comforters and security blankets for your child. Hugging their favorite animal friend to sleep every night can help your child feel safer and cozier. So, keep scrolling as we list some of the cutest stuffed animals to keep your little one company at night.

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13 Best Stuffed Animals To Sleep With

1. Best Comforting Nightlight:Ontel Star Belly Dream Lites Stuffed Animal Night Light

The soft and cuddly blue puppy generates moving nightlights at the press of a button and transforms the room’s walls and ceiling into a starry sky filled with stars and different patterns. It also makes for a suitable travel and sleepover companion, and your child can sleep with it anywhere, anytime. Moreover, this parent-recommended plush animal toy is available in different designs, including a unicorn, kitty, and dinosaur, making it an engaging stuffed animal for babies.

Item Weight: 1.23 pounds | Product Dimensions: 7.28 x 5.5 x 14.61 inches

Pros

  • Produces six colored lights
  • Two speed options
  • Auto shuts off after 20 minutes
  • Can be made to sit up or lay down

Cons

  • May require frequent battery changes

Our Reviewer's Experience

"This plushie and its unique ability to project a comforting light show on the ceiling has come in handy to keep my son’s nightmares at bay. Plus, its build quality and battery life have also been decent."


2. Best Huggable Plush Pillow:Franco Kids Bedding Plush Cuddle Pillow Buddy

The expert-approved plush pillow is made of 100% polyester and comes complete with embroidered eyes, a stylish dress, and a flower headband. Its soft plush material makes it huggable when sleeping or lounging, and the fun character-inspired designs make it suitable for your child’s playtime.

Item Weight: 1.63 pounds | Product Dimensions: 24"L x 13"W | Cover Material: Polyester | Shape: Flower | Color: How to Train Your Dragon Toothless | Fill Material: Polyester.

Pros

  • Easy to clean
  • Three-dimensional, embroidered features
  • Travel-friendly
  • Multiple options

Cons

  • May not be evenly filled

Our Reviewer's Experience

"My daughter's eyes lit up joyfully when she got this stuffed toy as a birthday present. I did notice some stitching imperfections, but the color and detailing have been top-notch."


protip_icon Did you know?
A survey commissioned by Build-A-Bear Workshop indicates that four in ten American adults still sleep with a soft toy or a teddy bear (1).

3. Best Realistic Appearance:Melissa & Doug Burrow Bunny Rabbit Stuffed Animal

4.7
Melissa & Doug Burrow Bunny Rabbit Stuffed Animal Image: Melissa & Doug

The cuddly bunny by Melissa & Doug is made of durable polyester material, and its white and brown fur makes it look realistic. Moreover, the bunny features extra-large, floppy ears that make it endearing, and its eyes, nose, and paws are well-detailed to let your child engage in pretend play.

Item Weight: 0.952 ounces | Product Dimensions: 5 x 4.5 x 12 inches

Pros

  • Soft and huggable toy
  • Easy to clean
  • Can be made to lay down or sit up
  • Suitable for essential skill-building

Cons

  • May not be sewn well

protip_icon Quick tip
Keep your stuffed toys free from bacteria by washing them in warm water every two weeks. Sun-dry or use a dryer at a high heat setting for 45 minutes or more.

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

The product has garnered more than 11,837 positive reviews on Amazon.

4. Best Fluffy Texture:Winsterch Large Sloth Stuffed Animal

The sloth doll makes one of the best baby stuffed animals to sleep with due to its large size, well-detailed features, and soft fur. This toy animal for babies measures 20 inches and is made of plush PP cotton that is soft and fluffy, making it suitable for cuddling when lounging and sleeping. Moreover, its realistic eyes, smiling mouth, and cute paws make it endearing.

Item Weight: 1.63 pounds | Product Dimensions: 14 x 11 x 20 inches

Pros

  • Easy to wash and clean
  • Lightweight
  • Doubles up as a pillow
  • Available in brown and ivory

Cons

  • Fur may come off

Our Reviewer's Experience

"I gifted this sloth plushie to my nephew, and he now loves carrying it around the house. The stuffing on its arms may take some time to reach its full size, but its softness makes it perfect for hugging, and the detailed features have been great for imaginative play."


5. Best Durable:Niuniu Daddy Dog Stuffed Animals For Kids

Niuniu Daddy Dog Stuffed Animals For Kids Image: Niuniudaddy

The cute stuffed dog by Niuniu is made of extra-soft microfiber material that is durable and can easily withstand your child’s constant hugging and playing. The little dog is chubby and cuddly; any child will love having it by their bed at night for a relaxed sleep. This medium-sized plushie also serves as a full-bodied pillow and makes an ideal snuggle buddy.

Item Weight: 11.3 ounces | Product Dimensions: 20 x 7 x 7 inches

Pros

  • Finely embroidered features
  • Cute T-shirt
  • High-quality stitching
  • Washable
  • Breathable material
  • Travel-friendly
  • Ideal gift for kids

Cons

  • Might flatten easily

6. Best Easy To Clean:Tammyflyfly Sleep Polar Bear Plush Animal Toy

The adorable polar bear in hibernation is plush and has soft fur that is not harmful or harsh on your children’s skin. Detailed with bright white features, this 14-inch-long bear can serve as a constant companion and sleep aid for your little one. It is safe, durable, and easy to clean, so your child will love snuggling their toy to sleep every night.

Item Weight: 8.4 ounces

Pros

  • Appropriate for a wide age group
  • Detailed design
  • Low-maintenance design
  • Premium-quality materials

Cons

  • Maybe slightly thin

Our Reviewer's Experience

"Besides being soft to the touch, its design has also allowed comfortable snuggling during car rides or naptime. It was a bit petite than expected, but it has maintained its plushness through washes. Hence, it gets my approval."


7. Best Skin Friendly:Demdaco Large Maine Coon Cat

If your child likes cats, or you’d like to introduce your child to a toy feline before a real one, this can be a suitable stuffed animal for baby boys and girls. This realistic-looking toy animal for babies is plush and has soft fur that is gentle on the little one’s skin. Detailed with lifelike features, this Maine Coon cat has been made of high-quality and safe materials that are long-lasting and easy to clean.

Item Weight: 4 ounces | Product Dimensions: 11.5 x 4.5 x 8 inches

Pros

  • Air-brushed accents
  • Appropriately sized
  • Flexible
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Not suitable for machine wash

Our Reviewer's Experience

"My daughter loves carrying this cat plushie wherever her real-life furry friend can not accompany her. I had to snip some of the fur on its face to prevent poking, but it still feels very soft and cuddly. Plus, its stuffing has stayed intact even after being used roughly."


8. Best Sleep Aid:MMTTAO Stuffed Polar Bear Plush Animal Toy

The adorable sleeping polar bear is one of the best stuffed animals for toddlers and newborns alike, thanks to its soft, comfortable form and huggable body. Whether your child has trouble getting to sleep or loves having a cute bear as a companion, this is an excellent toy to bring home. Filled with soft down cotton and sewn with high-quality polyester and acrylic fabrics, this soothing toy provides a sense of comfort and is durable and easy to wash.

Item Weight: 5.6 ounces | Product Dimensions: 13.8 x 7.1 x 4.7 inches

Pros

  • Suitable for home decor
  • Embroidered features
  • Versatile
  • Meets all toy safety requirements
  • Available in multiple sizes

Cons

  • Might have some creases

Our Reviewer's Experience

"This stuffed bear toy has been a cherished addition to my son’s toy collection. He finds its presence comforting and loves having it beside him during naps. Although it came with some creases, it has quickly become his preferred cuddle buddy."


9. Best Sensory Relief:1i4 Group Warm Pals Microwavable Lavender Scented Plush Toy Magical Unicorn

The unique plush toy comes with various features, such as a relief bead bottom that acts like a weighted blanket, a cuddly stuffing top that’s a joy to hold, and a French lavender scent that helps children relax and enjoy the soothing benefits of aromatherapy. You can cool or heat the magical unicorn in a freezer or microwave, adjusting it to the temperature your little one finds most comfortable. This quality-tested dreamy stuffed animal makes a suitable bedtime companion for your child.

Item Weight: 1.43 pounds

Pros

  • Filled with all-natural grains
  • Suitable for adults and children
  • Travel-friendly
  • Helps relax muscles

Cons

  • Stitching might come apart

Our Tester's Experience

"This microwavable plush has always comforted my little one, including when suffering from minor stomach aches and headaches. Its lavender scent is not my daughter’s favorite, but its weighted body makes her feel secure and helps her sleep better."


10. Best Supreme Quality:MaoGoLan Giant Teddy Bear

Made from polyester with ultra-soft stuffing, this teddy bear can act as a source of comfort while sleeping, watching television, or reading a book at night. You can also present it as a gift on various occasions like Valentine’s Day, Children’s Day, Christmas, or your little one’s birthday. This comfort toy animal for adults and children measures 39 inches in height and is available in various colors.

Item Weight: 14.8 ounces | Product Dimensions: 5 x 5 x 0.7 inches

Pros

  • Surface-washable
  • High-quality stitching
  • Durable zipper on the back
  • Well-designed detailing
  • Ideal gift for kids and adults

Cons

  • Might be slightly too large for some

Our Reviewer's Experience

"It took some time to fluff due to the compressed packaging, but its size has been impressive. My children love using it as a chair and prop during their pretend play sessions. Plus, the zippered back has made it easy to maintain its plushness."


protip_icon Caution
Never wash your teddy bear in a washing machine, as this may distort the teddy bear and cause it to tear.

11. Best For ThanksGiving:Cuteoy Star Projector Plush Night Light

If your little one requires some extra stimulation to sleep soundly at night, this safety-tested Night Light Star Projector stuffed animal will give their room a beautiful, gentle glow shaped like stars and moon projections. One of the perfect bedtime companions, this teddy creates a peaceful and soothing atmosphere for your child with its colorful lights and lullabies. The calming music is ideal for helping your baby fall asleep faster, while the illumination is a fascinating way of learning about colors and shapes from an early age.

Item Weight: 10.2 ounces | Product Dimensions: 2 x 2 x 2 inches

Pros

  • Adjustable volume
  • Designed with glitter horn and hoofs
  • Comes with ten lullabies
  • Portable and easy to clean

Cons

  • Doesn’t turn off automatically

My Personal Experience

"It has been the perfect companion and night light for my little one, who finds it difficult to sleep alone. While its softness and durability are commendable, an improved battery life would have enhanced its practicality."


12. Best Wildlife Bedtime:Puzzled DolliBu Plush Moose

Stimulate your young one’s imagination while helping them sleep better at night with this sitting moose that looks and feels huggable. If your child loves wildlife and nature, this can be one of the perfect gifts for their birthday. The ultra-soft fabric is filled with fluffy polyester and made from durable, child-friendly materials that are safe for your child. Clean up any mess with cold, soapy water and allow it to air dry to ensure you give your child a clean, cuddly nighttime pal.

Item Weight: 5 ounces | Product Dimensions: 7 x 3.5 x 0.2 inches

Pros

  • Compact and portable
  • Well-stitched
  • Lightweight
  • Realistic features

Cons

  • Might be slightly small for some

Our Reviewer's Experience

"Although it looked small in photos, the plushie is perfect for my daughter’s small hands. Its moose structure, with its horns and soft paws, looks realistic, and the fur-covered exterior is soft on her skin. Overall, it has made playtime more enjoyable."


13. Best Premium Stitching:MaoGoLan Teddy Bear

Crafted with a soft plush cover and stitched with high-quality and safe materials, this tested and trusted bear is suitable for cuddling and offers your child the necessary security for a good night’s sleep. You can also present this as a gift to your loved ones on Valentine’s Day, Christmas, or your anniversary, giving them some extra comfort at night. It measures 23 inches in height, and its soft fur is gentle and cozy.

Item Weight: 1.17 pounds

Pros

  • Two color options
  • High-quality stitching
  • Does not lose the fluffiness
  • Easy to maintain

Cons

  • Might shed

Our Reviewer's Experience

"With this option, I have found a stuffed brown bear that ticks the boxes for the correct size and cuddliness. Initially, there was a slight shedding issue, but that disappeared after the first wash. In sum, it has maintained its shape well and has been the ideal find for everyday playtime."


*The prices provided in this article are based on the latest available information. However, they may vary due to changes in pricing by the seller and/or promotional offers.

How To Choose The Right Stuffed Animals To Sleep With?

Here are a few factors to consider when choosing the right stuffed animals to sleep with.

  1. Interests: Whether your little one loves horses or bears, you can find different stuffed toys based on what excites them. You can gauge your child’s interests from the kind of drawings they make, cartoon characters they relate to, or animals they love. To ensure you pick the right plush sleep buddy, you can also ask for their preference by taking them through the many options.
  1. Filling: Ensure the toy has ample cotton or polyester filling to make it huggable and squishable. You can also choose a toy with a zipper cover to adjust the filling based on your needs.
  1. Materials: Choose a stuffed animal made from high-quality, child-safe materials that live up to the industry’s safety standards. Since children tend to get attached to their cozy plushies, it’s important to ensure that the toys you choose are durable and can endure the whims and fancies of a child. It should also be washing machine-safe and easy to clean to avoid hygiene issues.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. When can my baby sleep with a stuffed animal?

Ideally, your baby should not sleep with any stuffed animals or soft objects until they are 12 months or older. Sharing the crib with soft toys can increase the risk of suffocation and SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome) in younger children. Since most 12-month-olds can roll over, sit up, and move objects away from their faces, it is safer for them to sleep with stuffed animals.

2. Does my baby need a stuffed animal?

Stuffed animals are important for babies because they provide them with a much-needed sense of comfort in times of distress and keep them company at night. Their favorite stuffed toys tend to represent familiarity and reassurance, which is why children get easily attached to them.

3. How do I know if the stuffed animal is safe?

When buying a stuffed animal, make sure it is well-constructed and does not have any loose seams or strings that could get caught around your little one’s throat. Additionally, the toy should be made from child-safe materials and not contain any small pieces or ties that may pose a hazard.

4. How many stuffed animals does my baby need?

There is no minimum or maximum number of stuffed toys that a child can have. However, what matters more than the quantity is the quality of the toys they play with. Ensure the toys are soft, engaging, and durable.

5. Is sleeping with a stuffed animal a trauma response?

No, it’s not a sign of trauma. Some children or adults sleep with stuffed animals out of habit, while some sleep to feel secure and safe when they experience mental health issues like anxiety.

6. When should a child stop sleeping with a stuffed animal?

By the age of five, your child may no longer need a stuffed animal or plush toy. However, if they like sleeping with a stuffed animal, don’t forcefully terminate the habit. They might automatically stop sleeping with stuffed objects when they feel comfortable and secure.

7. Is it good to sleep with stuffed animals?

Sleeping with a stuffed animal makes children feel relaxed and comfortable. It helps in eliminating stress and being pressure-free.

Nicole Johnson, a baby sleep consultant and founder of The Baby Sleep Site, says, “Using a stuffed animal as a lovey can give your baby a sense of security and help them sleep much better at night. But, do not put any pillows or loose bedding in your baby’s crib or bed until your baby is a year or older to guard against SIDS and accidental suffocation.”

Why Trust MomJunction?

The above quality-tested products in our list of the best stuffed animals to sleep with have been included after extensive research into the features, benefits, and consumer reviews showcasing people’s experiences from multiple e-commerce websites. Priti Bose, our writer and product reviewer, has filtered the most recommended toys and handpicked ones that are gentle, engaging, well-constructed, and made of breathable fabrics. These animals are designed to be durable and make your little one’s nights more comfortable. She has also taken the quality of materials and the safety standards into account while curating this list.

The Bottom Line

With the right stuffed animal, your little one will soon find themselves inseparable from their new cuddle-buddy. Not only do adorable plush animal toys make for great gift ideas for kids, but they can also help children sleep better and feel more comfortable at night. The best stuffed animals listed here are fluffy, come in several interesting designs, and are safe for children. While buying, look for animals that are well-made, appropriate for their age, and tailored to their interests. To create a soothing sleeping environment for your children at night, choose the Ontel Star Belly Dream Lites Stuffed Animal Night Light. And to make their pretend-play sessions more engaging, choose the Melissa & Doug Burrow Bunny Rabbit Stuffed Animal, a soft and huggable bunny with realistic details. Furthermore, if your child just needs a plush bedtime companion to snuggle with, then the Winsterch Large Sloth Stuffed Animal with its soft fur makes an ideal choice. Make sure to read the brand’s age guidelines to confirm that the toy is right for your child’s developmental stage. We hope our list of the best stuffed animals to sleep with can help you understand the available designs and features.

Infographic: How To Ensure A Good Night’s Sleep For Your Child?

Sleeping with a stuffed animal gives a sense of security and an avenue to cuddle, thus ensuring good sleep to a certain extent. It’s crucial to regulate their sleep time to improve the quality of your child’s sleep. Check out the following infographic to learn more about enhancing your child’s sleep.

Tips For Better Sleep For Children (infographic)

Illustration: Momjunction Design Team

Get the high-quality PDF version of this infographic.

Download Infographic in PDF version


References

MomJunction's articles are written after analyzing the research works of expert authors and institutions. Our references consist of resources established by authorities in their respective fields. You can learn more about the authenticity of the information we present in our editorial policy.
  1. Survey: 4 in 10 adult Americans still sleep with teddy bear
    https://studyfinds.org/teddy-bears-stuffed-animals-adults/
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