Littlest Pet Shop
In 1992, Kenner Toys (at the time a division of Hasbro) introduced a new line of figurines under the brand name Littlest Pet Shop. These toys were modeled after everyday animals, and they all had some sort of action built in--such as the ability to wag their tails, flap their wings, or move in some other way. The line was successful right off the bat, and in 1995, Sunbow Entertainment produced an animated TV show featuring the pets as characters. The series ended in 1996, and the hype around the toys died out for several years.
By 2005, Kenner had officially been absorbed by Hasbro, and the parent brand decided to re-launch the once popular toy brand. It introduced new Littlest Pet Shop figurines with bigger eyes and bobble heads, and the toys caught on among a new generation of kids. Unlike the relatively modest success of the first release, the revamped Littlest Pet Shop was a huge hit. Hasbro has created more than 3,000 unique animals in five different generations of toys. The characters have become the stars of various video games, and a new TV show about the pets debuted in 2012.
Babies & Kids Merchandise
The staples of the Littlest Pet Shop line have always been the small figurines made out of plastic and rubber, which depict a certain animal. Some toys feature common household pets like cats, dogs, birds, and fish, while others branch out into much more exotic animals like armadillos, honey badgers, hippos, and raccoons. Since the brand makes so many different figures, Littlest Pet Shop keeps venturing further into the animal kingdom to find new inspirations. These pets might be sold individually, in pairs, or in multipacks. Additionally, you'll find a very broad assortment of playsets and accessories that can be integrated into playing with them.
The digital incarnations of the Littlest Pet Shop characters are almost as popular as the toys themselves. Video games are available for both consoles and handheld systems, and they allow kids to interact with their pets in fun ways. Many of the more recent figurines can also be paired with the Littlest Pet Shop website--giving you the opportunity to play with a digital version of your characters online after buying the toys. Other popular products include the DVD releases of the Littlest Pet Shop TV series, as well as books about the characters.
A keen sense of nostalgia is very prevalent among children of the '80s and '90s, and Hasbro has found a way to harness a love of the retro with its re-release of the Littlest Pet Shop line. Young parents who grew up playing with the toys are now able to introduce them to their kids, and children find the adorable animals as appealing as ever. The brand also strikes a good balance between old-fashioned toys and the digital age by embracing both. Since there are so many Littlest Pet Shop figurines, it's almost impossible to collect them all--making it easy for parents to shop for animals their kids don't have yet. The products are also evergreen, so they are the perfect toys to buy secondhand. We give Littlest Pet Shop 4.5 stars out of 5.
Littlest Pet ShopAbout
- Established 1992
- Animal figurines
- Sold at:
- Major retailers and online
- Types of items:
- Figurines, plush toys, playsets, video games, DVDs, books
- Related brands:
- Hasbro, Milton Bradley, Parker Brothers, Playskool, Tonka, My Little Pony, Nerf, Play-Doh, Transformers, G.I. Joe