We got hold of two toy sets from Fuzzikins Craft, a brand from Interplay UK Ltd., called Dozy Dogs and Crazy Cats. Both are intended for girls aged 4+ and both are based on the same concepts: color the cute dogs (or cats, depending on which set you buy) however you please. The sets come with their own washable, felt-tipped markers – black, pink, and a sort of copper color for the dogs, and green, yellow, and pink for the cats – so you don’t have to purchase anything yourself, but you could probably use markers or pens at your home, too.
There are also felt beds for each set, which you can fold yourself. The dogs come with light blue, purple, and green beds with bones on them, while the cats come with pink, white, and orange beds with light blue fish on them. There are also a couple of accessories, like eye masks, that you can put on the animals.
Everything is also laid out for you in an easy-to-read instruction manual with few words, large font, and big pictures.
The cats and dogs come in all white, ready for your coloring. Each set has a small, medium, and large animal, and, as an added bonus (but probably not so surprising given the brand name) – they’re fuzzy and soft to the touch, and their heads can move. I hadn’t expected that latter part from the pictures on the box.
My first impressions were that I’d really love these sets when I was younger (with a preference for the Dozy Dogs, since the only cat I liked back then was Garfield). The names and designs are eye-catching, and the entire prospect of making something your own would appeal – and still appeals! – to me.
I remember eyeing all the crafting kits and wishing I could buy all of them. I also vaguely remember splashing a lot of neon yellow, brown, and red on a white teapot and really loving its very, um, acidic color palette because I was able to take that template and paint it. I can imagine that my younger self would probably do the same with these two sets, though a slightly older me would probably put a bunch of thought into it. Maybe some hearts around the eyes and cheeks, because I tended to do stuff like that before.
Whatever the case, you can draw whatever you want – and that’s really why these sets – and so many like them – work. I also might have a bad memory, but what sets these apart is indeed the notion of fuzzy animals. Many of the craft toys in my heyday, or at least the ones I had an eye on, were really more about putting jewels on jeans, or making your own T-Rex out of wood. I don’t remember anything quite like Dozy Dogs and Crazy Cats.
I do also think that the toys are age appropriate, though younger children should have some supervision. The markers are a little thin and smaller than one would expect, and there are also a few small, thin parts for the felt beds. The smallest one I could find was a little smaller than an inch.
There are a few things I wish the creators had included, like more of a color selection for the markers. And though I’m personally a fan of the simplistic design, the templates could be varied in other ways. For example, maybe there could be three different looking dogs or cats, as well, instead of the same one but differently sized – or maybe the same one in different poses. There’s a lot to tinker with here. It’s also, like many crafting kits, pretty much a one-use toy.
All in all, with a price tag of £9.99, I think Fuzzikins Craft did a great job with Dozy Dogs and Crazy Cats, as they take a simple idea and execute it nicely. The instructions are clear and to the point. They’re available online, too, in case anyone happens to misplace them. Finally, the dogs and cats are well designed, sturdy, and let kids get creative. Looking online, I saw that Fuzzikins Craft has released other sets based on animals, too. No matter what, however, these toys would be a great way to spend an afternoon or evening with your kid.
Image credit: Fuzzikins Craft