Both my kids are animal mad and given half a chance would likely fill the house with as many pets as possible. Two dogs, two cats and far too many fish to count is kind of my limit though. So when I was offered the chance to review Zhu Zhu Pets it seemed the perfect opportunity to give the kids a hamster without any of the associated smell and mess.
Zhu Zhu Pets
There are a number of different Zhu Zhu’s to collect and despite only expecting one, we happily discovered we had been sent two, great for avoiding squabbles over whose turn it is! We received Pipsqueak and Mr Squiggles and both children were immediately taken with them.
Unlike most toys these days, the Zhu Zhus came with batteries already installed so the kids were able to play with them the minute the packet was opened. When you pat the top their heads the hamsters make lots of cute little squeaky noises and when you press down on their backs they start moving off and spinning round, exploring their environment. All the hamsters have sensors in their noses too so when they bump into something they can back up and move in a different direction.
At 4″ they are bigger than I was expecting and a huge plus that they can’t disappear under the couch along with all the other lost toys. I love their bright colours and and the tuft of hair on top of their heads is slightly reminiscent of the old style trolls of my childhood.
While the Zhu Zhus are cute and fun enough to play with on their own, it’s the playsets that make them feel more like real pets. We were lucky enough to receive the Hamster Wheel and Tunnel and the Adventure Ball to try out.
Hamster Wheel and Tunnel Playset
With this little set you simply point the hamster towards the tunnel and press down on it’s back and off it goes. It will climb through the tube and onto the wheel and have a run around it for a couple of minutes before turning and coming back down the tube for another wonder about. Both kids loved this set, but Pipsqueak seemed to have trouble getting onto the wheel sometimes and would come straight back out again. This didn’t seem to bother the kids though and they would simply help him on. The fact the top of the tube can be easily lifted to rescue a stuck hamster or place them directly on to the wheel is a big plus.
As is often the case with real hamster balls I had a bit of trouble getting the two halves of this ball to slot together but since then it hasn’t come apart again which had been a concern of mine. There is a hatch in the top for you to put the hamster in and out of. The first time we used it the hamster kept falling on it’s side and not working, then I discovered there was a piece of plastic you need to attach to the underside of the Zhu Zhu’s first to prevent them tipping. Once we had that figured they were off and it brought back lots of memories of the my old hamster from when I was little, he used to get his own back on the cat and chase her around the house whenever he was in his ball.
Overall we were really impressed with the Zhu Zhu Pets and Playsets we received and think they’re pretty reasonably priced, with the hamsters retailing at around £12.99, the ball at £9.99 and the wheel and tunnel at £14.99 from most online toy retailers (prices accurate at time of writing).
Disclaimer – I was sent these items free of charge in exchange for an honest review. All thought and opinions are my own in accordance with my disclosure policy.