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Warm bear hugs: Koala soothes kids’ aches, fears

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Whether a child is sick, injured, or even afraid of the dark, Thermal-Aid stuffed animals leap, gallop and hop to the rescue with some warm — or cold — comfort. The terry-cloth stuffed animals can be cooled in the freezer or heated in the microwave to create an ice pack or heating pad that can be hugged.

The animals’ bellies are filled with “a new, dry, and hardened corn material that is mold-resistant,” said Thermal-Aid founder Matthew Mills. “It evenly maintains hot and cold temperatures longer than any other natural heating pack.”

We adopted Ollie the Koala from the Thermal-Aid Zoo and couldn’t be happier with its ability to soothe a child who was fearful of sleeping alone, warm a cold bed on an autumn night, or relieve a stiff neck.

With just 30 seconds in the microwave, Ollie’s belly was warmed up and ready to snuggle! The cuddly, gray animal is a comfort for children of all ages, and their aching parents, too! Other animals waiting to be adopted from the Thermal-Aid Zoo include Tiny the elephant, five teddy bears in a variety of colors and names, Baxter the bunny, Happy the hippo, and JoJo the monkey. There are also travel-sized Zoo Minis (pictured) which can be heated in just 10 seconds.

These are a fantastic gift for a new parent that will be used again and again. (Although for any child under 3, close parental supervision is required, because if the animal were to become ripped or torn, the pieces of corn could be a choking hazard.) Otherwise, this is a must-have for every family.

Thermal-Aid Mini Elephant, $7.99, ThermalAidProducts.com.

Updated 1:08 pm, November 6, 2018
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