Moms Share Warning After Disgusting 'Sophie the Giraffe' Discovery

Mom Dana Chianese discovered mold inside her son's Sophia the Giraffe toy
Julie Dolan/Facebook

There are many things parents don't (ever) want to hear: the sound of their child screaming in agony, the non-sound of their child being super quiet and likely up to no good (expect a mess), and news that baby's beloved toys could have mold issues. As much as door number three stinks (literally), parents are reportedly finding mold inside Sophie the Giraffe teething toys -- and it's gag-worthy in a very bad way.

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Dana Chianese was shocked to discover nasty mold inside of her baby son's Sophie last month after opening up the toy, thanks to a rank odor Dana smelled from the hole that prompted her inquiry.

"I decided to cut into Sophie out of curiosity and discovered a science experiment living inside," Dana tells GoodHousekeeping.com. "Smelly, ugly mold living in my infant's favorite chew toy."

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Needless to say, Mom found the culprit.

Julie Dolan, an WLKY news anchor, shared Dana's cringeworthy photo on her Facebook page as a warning (and reminder) for parents to check their kids' toys for mold.

Yeah, that definitely does not look good ... at all.

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Given Dana is a pediatric dentist, it's pretty easy to assume she followed the cleaning instructions that came with the Sophie the Giraffe toy, which she said she did. "It still hurts my heart to know that for months I allowed my babies to chew on moldy toys," Dana mentions to GoodHousekeeping.com. "I no longer buy any chew toys with a hole or recommend any to my patients."

And it appears Dana is not alone, as Stephanie Oprea posted this photo of a moldy Sophie the Giraffe on Amazon.

"Beware!! If you have a drooly baby, moisture will get in the hole and you'll end up with mold!" Mom wrote on Amazon.com. "We've had ours for two years and the entire inside is coated with black mold!"

Mom Stephanie Oprea shares a troubling photo of Sophie the Giraffe with mold
Stephanie Oprea/Amazon

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A representative for Sophie the Giraffe responded to Dana and Stephanie's claims in a statement to GoodHousekeeping.com.

First of all, it's important to know that Sophie la Girafe [Sophie the Giraffe] is composed of 100% natural rubber, so the cleaning instructions have to be carefully respected. As indicated on the packaging and in an explanatory leaflet inside the packaging, we recommend to clean the surface of Sophie la Girafe with a damp cloth. It should not be immersed in the water nor rinsed off, to prevent water from getting inside, as she may become damaged. We thus would like to emphasize on the fact that is it important, while cleaning the product, that no water gets inside the whole.

The spokesperson also tells Good Housekeeping that neither Dana nor Stephanie reached out to their company about finding mold inside their toys.

"As of now, we have not been contacted by Mrs. Chianese nor Mrs. [Oprea] and were not aware of the situation before reading your article," the representative notes in the statement. "It is thus difficult for us to comment on the current situation, as we haven't had the chance to examine the products. Please know that each complaint received is taken very seriously and that the return of the product is always asked for further examination."

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Since news of parents' finding mold inside their Sophie the Giraffe toys made rounds across the Internet, reactions have been mixed.

One mom felt inspired to post a video of her 4-year-old Sophie toy that appears to be free of mold.

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I'm crossing my fingers that no one else's Sophie has mold inside. Aside from the fact that that's all sorts of yucky, no parent ever wants to imagine their little one playing with a toy that has furry growth on it.

God knows I don't.

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