Potty Duck Toy Turns Toilet Training Into Play

For immediate release
Contact: Shelly Mann, MD
Date: October 17, 2017                                 
Email: contactus@pottyduck.com
Website: www.pottyduck.com

A South Bend inventor and Chicago-area pediatrician have repurposed the iconic bathtub rubber duckie to create a toilet toy that teaches toddlers what to do when nature calls.

The Potty Duck Potty Training Toy leverages widely-recognized best practices in childhood education – play, imitation, relaxed expectations, and fun – with a hands-on experience that lets kids see what’s going on when one sits on the commode.

They help the duckie drink (squeezing it under water), then press out the “pee” and flush the toy toilet’s handle to release the water into a tub, sink, or big-person toilet where the toy toilet can be attached with suction cups.

“Potty Duck is the most magical potty training motivator available today,” says Dr. Barton Schmitt, the American Academy of Pediatrics’ leading expert on potty training, who recommends it to parents who contact his call centers across the United States.   

Fred Longenecker of South Bend was working on a prototype for the toy when he mentioned it to Dr. Shelly Mann, a Goshen College classmate who practices pediatrics in Grayslake, Ill., at a Goshen College soccer game.

“I said ‘that is so cute – I think it will be a great idea for the potty training,’” Mann recalls. The collaborators hired a designer in Connecticut who recommended a manufacturer. The toys went on sale this year on Amazon.

Mann and Longenecker say the toy can help young children become familiar with the function through play long before they begin training. Mann recommends it to parents when their children are 18 months old.

“I’m not talking about early potty training,” she says. “I’m talking about preparing a child – ‘This is just something you do as a part of a natural routine.’ When the child is ready, you can train them.”

“Gradual learning is the way that potty training should happen,” Longenecker says, contrasting educators’ and pediatricians’ recommendations with some parents’ expectations. “It shouldn’t be dropped on kids to be done in a week. Why not treat it like learning to walk, learning to hold a spoon? These simple tasks that children learn take time.”