Teddy Scare

Parents in India might think twice about letting their kids cuddle with stuffed animals: a new study found high levels of lead and cadmium in plush toys made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) in Mumbai. An article that appeared Friday in The Hindu said that the heavy metals in the toys could cause all kinds of medical problems for children, “from liver damage to disruption in mental growth.”

Of course it’s best to keep kids away from toys that could make them sick, but we can imagine some really traumatizing Velveteen Rabbit-type scenarios coming from this news. (Efficient nanny takes PVC-teddy to the trash as crestfallen child looks tearfully on.) All this on the heels of the finding that some sodas in India contain dangerous levels of insecticides. Sad news, considering the fact that stuffed animals and soda are two major perks of childhood.