Friday, March 16, 2012

Puppy Surprise by Playskool

I am going to veer away from my normal doll talk to share two things with you.  First, an awesome toy called Puppy Surprise.  Remember how I mentioned a while back about how much I like surprises?  Well, this toy is perfect for me.  It's perfect for a lot of kids in the 4-8 year old range, too, in my experience.  I think I have bought one of these for almost every kid I know in that age range.

What is Puppy Surprise?  It is a plush dog who is pregnant (stuffed) with removable puppies.  The surprise is, you don't know how many puppies she has until you open the box (and the dog).  She could have anywhere from 2 to 4 puppies, and if she has 4, one of them is likely to be a runt.  It's awesome.  The puppies are also gendered, so you don't know if you're going to get boys or girls...or both.  Playskool isn't making Puppy Surprise anymore, but there are plenty to be found on eBay for about $4 (opened) to $20 (unopened).

In the early 90s, Hasbro made a similar toy, also called Puppy Surprise, but these dogs had vinyl faces.  The older toys are also still available on eBay, but they tend to command higher prices, especially if the set is complete and in good shape.  I like both versions, but slightly prefer the newer ones because they are all plush.

A few years ago, when these started to go on clearance, I hoarded a ton of them so I could give them away as gifts.  I have a few left over.  Let's have some fun with them!

Playskool Puppy Surprise (discontinued).
The dogs are about 9 inches tall and come in a fairly simple window box.  The box emphasizes the surprise element, which works like a charm to get me to shell out my money:

I hope it's 4!  I need to know!!
The box also gives you the exact odds of getting each number of puppies, which I think is very nice:
2 puppies: 1 out of every 4 boxes
3 puppies: 2 out of 4 boxes (interesting)
4 puppies 1 out of 4 boxes

It also says that all twins are girls.  The chances of having a boy are 1 in 6.  Those are good odds for the fellas.

Each mother dog has a pattern on her cheek called a "Pretty Patch."  The patch will match that of her puppies.  This way, if you have lots of these dogs, you can always reunite a mother with her original puppies by matching the patches.  The gender of the puppies is indicated by the lining of their ears. If the lining is pink they're overheated girls, if it is blue, they're holding their breath boys.


There are lots of different colors and styles of dog to choose from.  I have seen purple poodles, pink poodles, black and white spotted dogs, pink and white spotted ones with fluffy ears, cream ones with fluffy ears, pure white ones, tan and pink ones...and maybe that's it.  Playskool also made some different animals, like cats and rabbits.  This one is a bit drab.  She was on a massive clearance sale:


You have to wrestle her out of three wire ties, and that's it.  She comes with a little card to record the names of the puppies (my kids loved this feature) and a plastic brush that is attached to her collar:



The brush is held on to the collar with a velcro loop, and you could easily fashion a little name tag to hang there instead:


The collar is removable and made out of shiny ribbon:


The dog is a fairly nice, soft stuffed animal on its own, but there's no way it'd be worth the original ~$20 price tag unless there were surprise puppies inside.  Let's get right to that part.  The puppies are in the dog's belly, which opens and closes with velcro.  It's nicely done and the dog has enough stuffing to be cuddly even without the puppies.  Of course you can't tell how many puppies there are inside until you open her up.  My kids and I used to hold every single box in the store and try to tell from the weight which ones had the most puppies.  

Here is the exciting moment!  


These dogs should come with a scalpel and sutures. 
It's a girl!  She looks just like her mother:



And it's...another girl.  Who also looks just like her mother.  Ah, well.  


These babies are essentially identical, but the way they are stuffed gives them very different personalities.  The firstborn is very cute and normal and maybe a little shy-looking, and the second one has some serious attitude.  She'd be telling dog jokes and running all over the place making trouble if she were real:

Hey, hey!  Did you hear the one about the chihuahuas and the light bulb?
Ok, let's try again.  I happen to have another one:


This is my favorite out of all of the colors.  She reminds me of my very first dog:


She has a different Pretty Patch:


Here we go!

Scalpel!
Forceps!
 It's a girl!  Whoa...look at her face:

Suction! 
That's a seriously smashed face.  I bet I can fix it, but still:

Boston terrier?
Another set of (almost) identical twins:


Here are two babies that came from one of my son's dogs (a pink poodle) so you can see that they're not always identical.  There was a third puppy with this one, but we must've lost it.

A boy (left) and a girl, and she's got a little top knot.
Well, my examples here didn't fit at all with the odds on the box, but my sample size is pretty small.  I do have one more of these toys, but it's a cat (called Kitty Surprise) and I am torn between opening it now or giving it as a prize.  

A prize for what, you ask?  Well, I had a little "puppy surprise" of my own yesterday, which is the second thing I wanted to share with you:


He's a rat terrier crossed with a chihuahua (ratahuahua?). He looks like a kitten...or a lemur.  I didn't expect to get a new dog yesterday, but sometimes life has little surprises.  This was a good surprise!


Right now, we're calling him "Monkeypants," and this is how he feels about that:

Actually, he's just yawning...
The problem with adopting a dog spontaneously is that you don't have a name ready.  So, my challenge for you is to help us think up a great name for the new dog. You can submit as many suggestions as you want.  Please do that.  We need help.  

Destructo?
Just write your suggestions in the comment section, below, and my family will vote and the winner will get this kitty (I threw in dolls, too, for extra incentive):

Kitty Surprise, Easter Chelsea and Stacie (very sweet)
Now, forgive me, but I have some newspaper to change...

29 comments:

  1. For some reason he looks like a suave Roberto to me!

    Or if you're into a little less conventional naming, Charlemagne.

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    Replies
    1. Tabitha--that is so funny because Robert is my dad's name (so maybe Roberto is out?) but my dad also loves Roman history, so it's neat that you also suggested Charlemagne! That is a very cool name.

      Roberto makes me think of Francisco, which makes me think of the movie "Elf," which always makes me laugh. :)

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  2. I like cuddles or chalupa. lol

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    1. Chalupa! That's awesome. Is that a Mexican food? I need to look it up. It makes me think of those infamous Taco Bell commercials....

      The sound of that name suits him.

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  3. What a cool name and a cute (real) puppy! I vote for Bruce or Charlie, he looks like a Charlie to me.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Molly! Charlie does suit him. Something about "C" and "S" names seem to work really well for him. I have a special family member named Charlie, though, so I probably can't do that. ;)

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  4. So adorable. He looks like a Pepe or pepito to me.

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    1. Thank you, Frannie. He is a piece of work. He is certainly very peppy, so those names definitely suit!

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  5. We have a chi-weenie (chihuahua + dachshund) and I wanted to name her Hoover, or Oreck or Kirby because she picks up everything she finds on the floor and eats most of it. But Mom named her Toffee.

    For this little guy, maybe Ringo (rings around his eyes) ... Chico ... Chaplin (Chaps for short)?

    Also on the toy, my bad self would put baby rabbits in the dog and puppies in the cat and give them away like that.

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    Replies
    1. A chi-weenie?? That's awesome. I bet she is a cute dog. I love the idea of naming a puppy after a vacuum cleaner...and I especially like Oreck.

      Ringo will get votes from my kids because they're huge Beatles fans. I like Chico and Chaplin (those "C" names again!)

      I like the way you think, Barb--if a Puppy Surprise dog had the potential for giving birth to rabbits and kittens, that would up the element of surprise to truly epic levels! I wish Playskool had thought of that....

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  6. Replies
    1. LOL! He definitely has some rodent-like qualities... :)

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  7. Replies
    1. Gotta love Pedro! Especially when he played for the Sox. :)

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  8. I hope whoever wins this shares some pics of what's inside. Especially if they are going to be handing it over to a little one.

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    1. Oh, me, too! Good idea. I will ask them if they mind sharing. :)

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  9. This dog is soooo cute. I think Pepe or Chico are two good names for this dog. Also, I agree with the person above. The person who wins should post pics. That would be awesome.

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  10. I had the pink poodle when i was little. there's also a tiny one who i think might be a runt. he is my favourite

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  11. I would be willing to buy the kitty surprise from you, if it hasn't been given away yet....

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  12. Are u selling any??

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  13. Hello.i was interested in them are u selling any of them i.will buy them thanks

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    Replies
    1. Sorry...I don't have these anymore. :( I only kept the ones that belong to my kids.

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  14. I had one of these as a kid. I ended up with two puppies, both females, one being a runt

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  15. I prefer the original puppy and kitty surprise. They were cuter and I actually played with mine so am biased:) still have it actually. Anyway some names up for consideration. . . dasher, rebel, Oz, ranger, avalanche(due to the coloring), shadowfang, Duke, baron, Link, Lasombra, ravnos, Venture, Gangrel, wolfspirit or wolfric, moltov, volcano and artemes. Or mercury due to his small size! Hope u have fun with the gorgeous pup!!

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  16. How cool! I remember having a purple one, but I've never seen a kitty. Thank you for sharing! :D

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  17. These are my suggestions.
    . Rudolph
    . Rascal
    . Princeton (prince for short)
    . Chico
    . Captian McWoof
    . Charles
    . Patches/Patchy

    ReplyDelete
  18. These are my suggestions.
    . Rudolph
    . Rascal
    . Princeton (prince for short)
    . Chico
    . Captian McWoof
    . Charles
    . Patches/Patchy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Let me know if i won. Plus maybe Romeo, Ricky or Ringo

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