The claim: Parents are sewing their children’s teeth into dolls
Parents do a lot to celebrate their children’s development. However, there is no evidence anyone is sewing human teeth into dolls, as a viral meme claims.
“Parents are Sewing their Kids’ Teeth into these ‘Tooth Monster Dolls’” states a recently resurfaced meme.
The same false claim went viral years ago after popular parenting Facebook page Perfection Pending by Meredith Ethington shared it on Dec. 20, 2017. Ethington clarified that the meme was inaccurate in comments several weeks later, however, that didn’t prevent confusion from spreading across platforms.
“For the record, I have since discovered that these are NOT real teeth (Thank GOODNESS!) However, these dolls still make me shudder and may cause nightmares. Buy them here if you hate someone and want to gift one of these little horror story dolls to someone,” Ethington commented and shared a link to the Fuggler doll website.
When USA TODAY contacted Ethington about her post, she directed us to the Fuggler site.
USA TODAY also reached out to Boy Mom, a parenting Facebook page that recently posted the meme, for comment.
Fugglers: Monster dolls with fake teeth
Fugglers are colorful, monster-like dolls. While the dolls range in color, they all share a distinctive set of human-like teeth. Fuggler urges customers to adopt a “toothy weirdo,” warning that customers will “immediately regret” their decision to “actively sabotag(e) (their) own happiness.”
“Look deep into the vacant eyes of all the Fugglers up for adoption,” Fuggler says. “Narrow it down to the one that repulses you the least. Or the most – we don’t know your life.
“Not made with real teeth. Probably,” the bios read.
Fuggler addressed the false meme in a Jan. 6, 2018, Instagram post by sharing an image with the meme and the word “NOT” inserted.
Website Café Mom debunked the meme in 2018, noting that images of Fugglers go viral every few years “after people see them, assume they’re made with real baby teeth, panic, and then go on a tear about ‘parents these days’.”
Fugglers did not respond to USA TODAY’s request for comment.
Our rating: False
We could find no evidence parents are sewing their children’s baby teeth into dolls as claimed in a viral meme. The meme shows images of Fugglers, monster-like dolls made with fake teeth. We rate this claim FALSE because it is not supported by our research.
Our fact-check sources:
- Boy Mom, Feb. 7, Facebook Post
- Perfection Pending by Meredith Ethington, Dec. 30, 2017, Facebook Post
- Fuggler TM, accessed Feb. 9
- Fugglers, accessed Feb. 9, Twitter Bio
- Fugglers, accessed Feb. 9, Instagram Bio
- Fugglers, Jan. 6, 2018, Instagram Post
- Café Mom, Jan. 3, 2018, “‘Baby Tooth Monster Dolls’ Are Freaking Out the Internet — but It’s Not What People Think“
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Our fact check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.