15 Best Pull Toys for Your Baby and Toddler

pull toys toddlers

Pull toys are one of the most common playthings that are recommended by child development psychologists and toy experts alike for the optimum growth and development of children in the first 3 years of life. Choosing the best pull toy for your kids is therefore crucial in helping them reach their full potential.

Our 15 Top Pull Toys for Kids This Year

In a hurry? Check out our best picks from the list:

Hape - Walk-A-Long Puppy Wooden Pull ToyHapeWooden
Plan Toys Dancing AlligatorPlan ToysWooden
TOMY Cheese Squad RacersTOMYPlastic
Plan Toy Pull-Along SnailPlanToysWooden
Fisher-Price Brilliant Basics Lil Snoopy (Colors May Vary)Fisher-PricePlastic
Hape Shape Sorter Turtle - Wooden Pull Along Toy - 5 Shape BlocksHapeWooden
VTech Pull and Learn Car Carrier Pull ToyVTechPlastic

1Walk-A-Long Puppy Wooden Pull Toy by Hape

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Age range: 1 to 3 years old

With a very sleek and colorful body that would remind you of a colorful Pluto, the Walk-A-Long Puppy Wooden Pull Toy is excellent for strengthening the arm and leg muscles of your little ones. The toy is made of premium quality wood sourced from sustainable forests and finished with child safe and non-toxic materials. The 4 wheels of the pull toy dog is rimmed with rubber to allow for more efficient rolling on any surface as well as help prevent scratches off your floor and minimize the noise that may be present once your kid pulls on the toy.

What We Like about It – The dog design of the toy is an excellent introduction to walking a real dog. It thus lays the foundation for make-believe play while at the same time fostering a sense of independence as your toddler will be tugging along with his or her wheeled friend anywhere around the house. 

2Dancing Alligator by Plan Toys

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Age range: 19 months to 12 years old

Crocodiles and alligators are 2 of the world’s most feared animals. However, they are also some of the few creatures to have lived on the surface of the planet a lot longer than man. You can teach your young kids about these often-maligned animals with the Dancing Alligator pull toy. It’s made of organic rubberwood to make it really environmentally friendly and then finished off with equally safe, non-toxic materials. When your kid pulls on the wooden body of the alligator, it creates a unique click-clack sound.

What We Like about It – The non-threatening appearance of the toy can help teach young kids not to be afraid of an alligator. Additionally, the toy is made of completely safe materials so that is an added bonus. More importantly however, is the toy’s ability to help stimulate imaginative play while at the same time fostering mastery of gross and fine motor skills.

(Hey! If You Like Wooden Toys, You May Want To Read: Best Wooden Toys For Toddlers)

3Cheese Squad Racers by TOMY

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Age range: 1 to 5 years old

Imagine the 3 blind mice except that they aren’t blind and that they are riding in a 3-carriage train-like vehicle and you now have the Cheese Squad Racers. The racer is more like a 6-wheeled soap box derby car with 3 drivers seated in 3 cheese-shaped sections corresponding to the wheels. Pulling on the Cheese Squad Racers will produce a tick-tick-tack sound which corresponds to the rhythmic bobbing of the 3 colorful mice up and down their respective cheese racer cockpits. The 3 mice are also removable for standalone make-believe play.

What We Like about It – The design is simple. Pulling on the toy rotates the wheels which push the mice up and down their cockpit seats to create the tick-tack sounds. It’s therefore excellent for auditory stimulation as well as fine and gross motor skills enhancement. It can also serve as a basis for make-believe play.

4AlphaPup Toy by LeapFrog

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Age range: 1 to 3 years old

If your kid loves dogs, then you might want to give him or her the AlphaPup Toy first so he or she can practice how to walk a dog. The toy is a pull toy that doubles as an activity center. Its long slender body, like that of a dachshund, contains colorful stripes that doubles as a piano-like activity center for learning the alphabet including the sounds of the different letters. Pulling the toy triggers the same action. It also has 2 dedicated buttons for playing fun doggie phrases and 3 learning songs. The pull-along cord is connected to a bone-shaped handle for easier pulling.

What We Like about It – It’s a very sensory experience walking with the AlphaPup. Pulling it plays music while at the same time it waggles its tail. It’s excellent for make-believe dog walking play as well as help facilitate the development of language skills.

5Quack Along Ducks by TOMY

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Age range: At least 10 months old

It is always fascinating to see ducks with their ducklings in pond streaming one after the other. This behavior can now be mimicked with the Quack Along Ducks pull toy. The train comes with a brightly colored mother duck in front of 2 equally colorful and cheerful-looking baby ducks. Whenever kids pull the Quack Along Ducks, the duck trio play quacking sounds making playtime very interesting.

What We Like about It – The toy is great for the development and enhancement of gross and fine motor skills. For younger children, the quacking sounds provide additional sensory stimulation to the bright colors of the ducks.

6Pull-Along Snail by PlanToys

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Age range: 19 months to 3 years old

If your kid has seen the animated film Turbo and believes that he or she can find another Theo in your backyard, maybe you can make this dream come true by giving him or her the Pull-Along Snail pull toy. This uniquely-designed and award-winning pull toy creates a very interesting movement. When pulled, the bright wheels representing the snail’s shell spin which in turn moves the body of the snail in an up and down motion. This creates the impression that the snail is actually contracting its body to propel itself forward. The toy is also made of organic rubberwood that has been 100 percent recycled.

What We Like about It – The bright colors can help in visual stimulation while the snail’s body movements can help encourage young children to walk and run. These can help stimulate creativity and imagination as well as provide a rudimentary understanding of how snails actually move.

7Brilliant Basics Lil Snoopy by Fisher-Price

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Age range: 1 to 3 years old

Dogs are the most fun pets to walk. While your baby and toddler may not be able to control a real puppy yet, he or she can surely exert his or her control over the Brilliant Basics Lil Snoopy. This pull-along toy dog barks, turns its head, wiggle its ears, and shakes or wags its tail when pulled. It does not require any batteries as the gears are fully activated by motion. The more Lil Snoopy is pulled, the greater the number of movements.

What We Like about It – It’s a really innovative way of introducing the concept of walking the dog to your kids. This helps them pretend that they are walking their real puppy. This helps train them on how to properly hold the leash, developing their fine and gross motor skills, and at the same time enhancing their hand-eye coordination.

8Playful Puppy Pull Toy by Melissa & Doug

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Age range: 18 months to 3 years old

For a different kind of make-believe dog walking experience for your toddler, you may want to give him or her the Playful Puppy Pull Toy. Made of synthetic materials and painted and finished with non-toxic paint, this pull-along toy dog simulates the walking action of dogs with its 4 legs attached to the rubber-lined wheels. As the wheels turn, the dog’s feet move up and down in a wobbly fashion pivoting at the top of the dog’s body.

What We Like about It – It cannot get any simpler than this. There are no complicated parts to tinker with; just plain old pulling action. It is therefore ideal for helping young children master their walking skills while at the same time help facilitate imaginative play. While the manufacturer recommends the toy for children at least 18 months old, some parents have found it useful for children younger than 18 months.

9Shape Sorter Turtle – Wooden Pull Along Toy by Hape

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Age range: At least 1 year old

One of the essential developmental tasks of young children is to exhibit early simple problem-solving skills. With the Shape Sorter Turtle Wooden Pull Along Toy, this should not be an issue. In addition to the built-in shape sorter in the turtle’s shell, the pull along toy also comes with 5 blocks of different colors including blue, red, yellow, orange, and purple. Each block is also printed with a picture and numbers. The wooden wheels touch the circular turtle shell such that when the wheels roll, the turtle shell also spins.

What We Like about It – It’s a pull toy that doubles as an activity center. The different blocks can help teach young kids about the different shapes and colors as well as develop or reinforce their numerical skills and picture recognition. This can aid in expanding their vocabulary. This is an excellent toy to consider if you want your kids to master their developmental tasks early on.

10Pull and Learn Car Carrier Pull Toy by VTech

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Age range: 1 to 3 years old

One of the most fascinating toys a kid can ever have is a toy car. Now imagine giving your little tot the Pull and Learn Car Carrier Pull Toy and he or she will simply be playing with amazement. The toy set comes with a huge car transporter with a fully operational flip-down ramp to allow access to the upper deck of the transporter. It also comes with 3 colorful cars with 3 cute animal figures. The transporter head has a built-in activity center that features a CB radio that activates lights and sounds for additional children’s learning. It also has several buttons that play interactive phrases about colors, animals, and numbers.

What We Like about It – It’s one massive toy to pull. This makes it ideal for exploratory and imaginative play especially when shared with other kids. Helps foster the development of language skills and the enhancement of fine motor skills, creativity, and problem-solving skills.

11Pull Along Dachshund by Brio

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Age range: 12 months to 3 years old

Imagine the very sleek and shiny elongated body of a dachshund with its matching pointed face and large drooping ears as well as a tail that is standing straight up. What you now have is the Pull Along Dachshund from renowned toy maker Brio. The toy has a thick, easy to grip pull-along cord. When pulled, the Dachshund’s head moves, its tail wags, and its ears flap as if it is very happy and content on following your little kid wherever he may decide to go.

What We Like about It – What makes this toy really interesting is that it has been more than 60 years since it was first introduced in 1953 and it hasn’t changed a bit. It still is well-loved by both parents and their children. In fact, many adults who were born in the 1950s can still fondly recall the fun times they had with this toy in their younger years. This speaks well of the toy’s quality and enduring simplicity.

12Children’s Frolicking Frog Pull Toy by Melissa & Doug

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Age range: At least 18 months old

For children who love Kermit and other lovable frog characters, they can now add to their collection the Children’s Frolicking Frog Pull Toy. This shiny green wooden amphibian on blue wheels is sure to make playtime more interesting for your little kids. The moment the Frolicking Frog is pulled along, the wheels also turn the hind legs of the frog to mimic a hopping motion while the front wheels attached to a mechanism will wiggle the frog’s eyes. This combination of hind leg action and funny eye movements can make for an enjoyable pull along toy.

What We Like about It – The design is so simple enough that it does not require any complicated parts to tinker with if you need to adjust something. It is a very straightforward approach to helping children develop their fine and gross motor skills while at the same time help stimulate imagination and creativity.

13Stack and Pull Train by Manhattan Toy

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Age range: 1 to 5 years old

There is something about locomotives and trains that really fascinate young people. While realistic electronic train sets might be the way to go, these are nonetheless composed of very small parts that may endanger very young children. As such, it is better to give your kid a Stack and Pull Train. This 21-piece toy set is composed of 15 highly colorful geometric shapes, 3 character head pieces, and 3 train cars that can be linked together. Each train car has two wooden posts used for stacking the blocks in different configurations.

What We Like about It – The toy is a unique way of augmenting the organizational skills of young children especially in terms of stacking the blocks. Additionally, this helps facilitate the development of simple problem solving skills as children will have to determine which geometric shape will fit best in a particular train car. More importantly, the toy lays the foundation for creative and imaginative play.

14Pull Along Duck Baby Toy by Brio

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Age range: At least 1 year old

There is something elegant in the way ducks flock and fly together. They rely on each other to basically ensure the survival of everyone. You baby or toddler may not appreciate this yet. But try to give him or her the Pull Along Duck Baby Toy and he or she will instantly recognize that the duck is actually following your kid. The pull-along duck toy is made of high grade solid wood and finished in materials that are guaranteed child safe. When babies pull on their ducks, the toy’s head also moves left and right while its wings flap up and down. Both of these movements are initiated and maintained by a unique mechanism inside the toy duck’s body.

What We Like about It – It’s a classic toy. With large colorful wheels under an immaculate white body and adorned with yellow wings and beak, this toy is an excellent starter pull toy for babies.

15Pull-Along Zoo Animals by Melissa & Doug 

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Age range: 2 to 4 years old

Kids love the zoo as well as any other place where there are animals. Their fascination with these creatures can now be supported with the Pull-Along Zoo Animals pull toy from well-respected toy manufacturer Melissa & Doug. The toy follows a mix-and-match design to help children form an entirely different animal from the wooden pieces that make up an elephant, a zebra, and a giraffe. This means that kids can actually make their own zephant (a combination of zebra and elephant), a girbra (the combination of a giraffe and a zebra), or even an eleraffe (a combination of elephant and giraffe.

What We Like about It – It’s a very interesting way to stimulate your kid’s creativity as the stackable animal blocks can produce a variety of combinations. This helps enhance their problem-solving skills while at the same time improves their fine motor skills.

How We Chose Our List

As there are plenty of products to choose from, making the correct decision as to give your baby or toddler can be quite daunting especially to first-time parents. This is why we came up with our list of the 15 best hand picked toys for your children below 3 years of age.

Our list of the top sellers includes research on the pull toys that have excellent quality, good safety profile, well-established toy manufacturer’s reputation and credibility, and positive remarks from parents who have seen remarkable developments in their respective children. More importantly, our research is largely based on the ability of these toys to help stimulate or enhance the development of infants and toddlers. We are thus, optimistic that our list of the 15 leading pull toys for babies and toddlers will be beneficial in your own search of what’s best for your kids.

The Benefits of Playing with Pull Toys among Infants and Toddlers

For the first 3 years of life, it is crucial to provide children with the correct kind of toys for their various developmental needs. Young children, particularly infants and toddlers, require a lot of sensory stimulation as well as physical activity to help fast-track their growth and development especially the development of their cognitive skills, social skills, and emotional skills.

Pull toys help infants develop both their gross and fine motor skills which they can refine until they reach toddlerhood. Pull toys require good control of the muscles of the hand as well as the arm especially when pulling on the toy. Additionally, young children will need stronger leg muscles, a steadier gait and stance, and excellent coordination of the body and limbs as the young child attempts to move with the pull toy in tow.

As the baby learns to master the control of his or her bodily movements, mobility and physical activity are enhanced. At the same time, the kid’s sense of exploration and experimentation is also stimulated. This leads to the discovery and appreciation of the things around the child which, in turn, can help impart an understanding of how the real world operates. This is especially true among toddlers as they already have the physical capacity for increased exploration. This generates new knowledge and new experiences which leads to social and emotional development.

Pull toys can also help in the development of inferential skills and problem-solving skills as the toddler tries to navigate his or her pull toy around obstacles. These playthings can also help facilitate creativity and imagination especially among older toddlers who may already start showing signs of make-believe or pretend play.

Pull toys are important in infant and toddler development as these toys provide the necessary sensory stimulation, physical activity, and cognitive development that will become the bases for optimum growth and development for these kids.

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Selina Marie
Selina Marie is our head of content for MyKidNeedsThat.com, mum of two and a self proclaimed toy geek. When she isn't juggling the madness at home, on a school run or baking her world famous blueberry muffins, you will find her product researching and keeping the site freshly updated with the latest toys and fun for our readers!
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