New research has revealed that parents are prioritising washing the pet’s toys over washing children’s cuddly teddies.

The survey of 2,000 parents from, found that almost two thirds (64%) revealed they place importance on washing their pets’ toys – higher than their children’s teddy bears.

Despite this, an overwhelming 88% of parents said they are fully aware that children’s cuddly toys carry germs and a further 60% of parents admitted to knowing they need to be washed frequently.

The data also looked at the items which were prioritised for the wash, with bathroom towels and kitchen tea towels (92%) taking the top spot. This was followed by everyday wear and bedding (90%) coming in joint second.

Sophie Beckett-Smith, large appliances expert at said: “It’s interesting to see the importance placed on certain items for the wash by parents, especially considering the last 22 months.

“We know that frequently used items, such as cuddly toys are essential to be washed, especially as our little ones are likely to cuddle them throughout the day and night, if not cough, sneeze and snuffle on them or close to them. Luckily, it couldn’t be easier to wash teddies. Firstly, check the label and if they can be washed, pop them inside a pillowcase and in the washing machine on a 60-degree wash to help protect them. For those that can’t go on a regular wash cycle – pop them in a plastic bag and in the freezer overnight before washing on a gentle hand wash.”

The survey also found the main reasons why parents don’t wash their children’s cuddly toys, with nearly half (40%) revealing that this was due to lack of awareness of teddies needing the wash and worry about the washing machine ruining their child’s prize possession.

This was followed by 29% who admitted it doesn’t look visibly dirty so they don’t think it needs to be washed, 24% who don’t think germs on teddies will do any harm and 17% who said they can’t prize the cuddly toy away from their child to put it in the wash.

The research has been released following the launch of the AO Teddy, Bear. For more information, please visit: