WebKinz 101


Four things every parent should know about the wildly popular WebKinz pets and online social network.

WebKinz: More Than the Average Stuffed Animal

WebKinz plush toys come with secret codes that allow your child to log into a Web site where they can play games and send messages to other kids with Webkinz, while caring for virtual versions of the pet they purchased. Just like the Beanie Babies craze in the '90s, most kids want to collect as many Webkinz as possible, and the little virtual pets keep them visiting Webkinz.com day after day.

The pets range from bears to frogs, puppies to pandas and can be found at Walgreens, Hallmark and most major toy stores for about $15. Each animal comes with its own unique code, which allows access to the Webkinz site for one year.

WebKinz Require Constant Care Online

Each online version of Webkinz must be cared for, almost like a real animal.

To do this, kids log onto the site and feed their pet apples, make sure it has a bed to sleep in and they can even have their own books to read. If the pet is neglected for several days it will grow ill, indicated by a green nose and an ice bag on its head. Players can contract an in-game veterinarian by going to the Thing To Do tab located on the bottom right of the screen and click on Dr. Quack's clinic and he will help your bet get well at no charge.

Originally published