My daughter loves dogs.  She also loves toys that move around and make noise (think zhu-zhu pets – she loved those!).  So when I was given the opportunity to review Skippy the Smart Pup from VTech, I was excited for Emma.  I was hoping the toy would be very interactive and that she would enjoy it as much as she did the zhu-zhu pets.

Before I get into our opinion of this toy, let me tell you a little bit about it.

Skippy the Smart Pup is a colorful, interactive electronic toy dog that comes with a “bone remote”.  It isn’t necessarily controlled by the remote, but it “interacts” with the remote.  From the website: “Your child will love the fun interactions with their learning puppy using a wireless infrared sensor bone, pressable head button, light-up nose button, swinging ears, four leg buttons and moving joystick tail. The puppy actually moves in the direction of the bone, when it is waved! (Interjection by me: see my comments on this below) Skippy the Smart Pup teaches your child about self awareness, following directions, music and more!”

Skippy moves about using two small wheels and can make some incredible turns – he is very mobile, no doubt about that!  This toy is recommended for ages 18-36 months.

A Mom’s Thoughts:

First of all, Emma (19 months) loves this toy.  It may not be as cuddly as a zhu-zhu pet, but it is much more interactive!  When you touch the ears, legs, nose,or tail, he says things like, “This is my back leg!” and “That’s my tail!”.  Actually, when Emma grabs the joystick “tail”, it makes a noise that sounds like whimpering to me, lol.  I think that’s wise since we wouldn’t want our children thinking it’s okay to grab the tail.  Not that Emma actually realizes it might be whimpering.  ;-)

Skippy has two modes of play: With the remote, and without the remote.  Playing with the remote is kind of pointless for Emma at her age because she doesn’t really understand that it’s a remote.  But that doesn’t mean that she doesn’t enjoy carrying it around!  In fact, she keeps making me laugh because she’s constantly putting it to her ear like it’s a phone.  ;-)

When you shake the remote, Skippy is supposed to come to you.  Unfortunately, I haven’t been very successful in making this happen.  When I shake the bone, he says things like, “There’s my bone!” but he doesn’t come to it – he continues to move around doing his little twirls and such.  I would say that if you wanted a remote-control dog, this is not the toy to buy.   The buttons on the remote work, though, and my toddler certainly doesn’t care that the doggie doesn’t come to the bone.  In fact, she carries him around, enjoys pushing his buttons and watching him run around, and dances when he sings and plays music.

As an educational tool for a small child, I think Skippy is a nice find.  He tells the child which legs are front and back, his ears and legs are labeled, and he names his nose, tail, ears, and legs when played with.

What I don’t love…

  • As a mom, I do find the toy a bit loud and obnoxious.  It would be nice if there was a volume control.  Nonetheless, Emma loves it.  Oh, what moms go through for their children… lol
  • The toy doesn’t seem to “follow the bone” like it says on the package.  My daughter doesn’t care.

Now watch this video and see Skippy and my daughter play together for yourself:

What I do love:

  • As you can see, Emma is pretty rough with it.  Skippy has been thrown and dragged and pushed and pulled and he’s held up nicely!  So yeah, this toy is durable.
  • We’ve had this toy for over a month and the batteries that came with it haven’t died!  That’s nice.

Conclusion:

Emma loves her electronic puppy.  Today she was carrying him around and putting him in her little fold-up chair, lol.  I recommend him as a fun canine friend for little ones.  Remember, though, that he doesn’t come to the remote like I thought he would.  Other than that, the remote works fine and is a fun accessory to the toy.  I would recommend this for ages 18 months to 2 years old.

Ready to buy?

You can purchase Skippy the Smart Pup for $29.99 at stores like Target and Walmart in the toy section.

I received Skippy the Smart Pup from VTech free of charge in exchange for an honest review.  This review is my own opinion, my own experiences with the product, and in my own words.  I was not compensated in any other way.

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