Aussie mum shares 'worrying' issue with toy sold at Big W: 'It was slowly melting'

The mum had noticed a burning smell in her home but couldn't find where it was coming from.

A Big W shopper has issued an urgent warning to others after discovering her son’s battery operated toy pig was slowly burning in her home.

The New South Wales mum alerted other parents to the issue on a Big W fan Facebook page after she discovered the cause of a “faint burning smell” she had noticed in her home, but previously couldn't explain.

“For the last couple of days, I could smell a faint burning smell, but couldn’t for the life of me find it,” she wrote. “Well, my son found it this morning. Slowly over time, it seems to be melting above the battery pack.” She said her post was to warn other parents who also owned the Little Live Pets My Pet Pig toy.

Big W Pets alive recall
The worried mum shared photos of her son's toy after discovering it had melted away near the battery compartment. Source: Facebook

Sharing an image with her warning post, the mum showed a burnt patch on the back of the toy that had a “gooey and melted” feeling. Once the burnt spot was pulled away, the battery pack underneath was revealed.

Over 600 comments were made on the post from other concerned parents, many of whom said they too owned the popular toy which is also available at Kmart and Amazon.

'It happened to us too'

Her confronting warning saw dozens of other parents investigate whether their toys at home had a similar issue. Within two days, a considerable amount of others said they realised the same thing had happened to their toy too.

“Thank you for this post. I just looked for my daughter’s one and it looks the same. I'm going to take the battery out and keep it aside as I'm sure this will be recalled,” another mum wrote, adding that their toy was about one-and-a-half to two years old.

“I just went and checked my daughter's and noticed this dark mark on its back under the skin, is this the same for anyone else? I checked the batteries and the inside seems fine but the top looks suspicious after seeing this post and where it burnt through,” another commented.

Big W Pets alive with dark patches on their bums.
Several other mums shared photos of their children's toys which had the same damage. Source: Facebook

“Just went and looked at Miss 3's piggy... OMG, it's doing the same thing. We ALL need to contact Big W so everyone is aware,” another advised. An alarming amount of concerned mums also commented saying they had discovered a black discoloured spot on their child’s toy in the exact same spot.

Another mum added that it wasn’t just the pig version of the toy that had the issue with her daughter’s toy from the Pet’s Alive range having a similar problem. “My daughter had the chameleon little live pets and it’s done that same thing within 8 months of buying it,” she said.

Hundreds of other mums praised the original mum for speaking out saying that the dangerous toy needed to be reported. “Holy moly thank god you posted this. You’ve opened a can of worms. And potentially saved lives!” one said.

Several mums said they had reached out to the toy’s manufacturer Moose Toys and received a response saying that they are investigating. The response said the potential issue “appears to be related to rusting of the capacitive sensor” not the battery itself. The toy had not been recalled with the company adding that they see “no risk of injury”, but advised consumers to return the toy if they were concerned.

Manufacturer says 'no evidence of burning or melting'

A spokesperson for Moose Toys told Yahoo News Australia that the safety of their consumers is their “top priority”.

“Before sale, this product was extensively tested, and passed all relevant safety tests,” the spokesperson said. “After reviewing the posts on the Big W Mums page, our Quality Team has undertaken further extensive testing and has found there is no evidence of burning or melting.

“Our testing shows that the discolouration is due to the rusting of the copper used in the touch sensor on the pigs back and general wear and tear, which causes the pigs skin to darken and soften.” They confirmed that the issue is not related to the battery or electrical components and does not pose a safety risk.

Big W Pets alive toy in packaging.
A spokesperson for the toy's manufacturer Moose Toys said they have investigated the complaints. Source: Big W

They said the popular toy was sold more than 1.8 million times globally over the past three years, with Moose Toys only recently becoming aware of the issue. Findings from the toy investigation will also be considered in the design of future products.

Big W responds to mums' concerns

Big W told Yahoo that they were aware of the issue and confirmed that the manufacturer, Moose Toys, had completed an investigation into the toy.

“At Big W the safety of our customers is our priority and we have worked with the supplier to investigate the issue affecting some of the Little Live Pet Pigs toys,” a Big W spokesperson said.

“It has been identified that there is currently no risk of injury with the product however should customers wish to return the product they can do so at their local Big W store with their proof of purchase.”

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