How to Fix Stuffed Animals

  • By: Mohammed Zeliche
  • Date: December 8, 2021
  • Time to read: 5 min.

“Some people have a stuffed animal that is their favorite, and they’re always having to fix it. Here are some ways you can fix your favorite stuffed animal.”  “First, try using the hose from a vacuum cleaner on the stuffing that has come out of the toy. Next, if this doesn’t work or you need help with other parts of your stuffed animals’ body, take them to a professional seamstress for repair.”

How to Fix Stuffed Animals:

So you’ve had your stuffed animal for years, and suddenly it has a tear in the seam. Or maybe one of its legs is ripped off entirely.  Or perhaps it got really dirty, so you washed it in the washing machine, but now it’s uneven on one side … not to mention several inches shorter. 

How are you supposed to fix these things? Well, there are several ways, depending on how big the problem is…

Small Repairs

One way would be to use thread to sew up any rips or tears in seams (and re-stuff if necessary). For removing stuffing that’s come out of part of an animal (example: when its leg falls off), put some glue on the end of a toothpick and use it to stuff the hole with some stuffing. Another thing you can do is sew up any holes in floppy parts of an animal (example: floppy ears, legs that bend back and forth). For all of these things, just use a needle and thread and take your time sewing!

If there’s a small tear in the seam, you can also use fabric glue to reseal it… but make sure you allow the glue to dry completely before using or washing your stuffed animal (otherwise it’ll come undone again!). 

You may need to hold the place where the cut is together with one hand while gluing with another. Also, because fabric glue doesn’t stick well to cloth later down the road if you’re going to wash your stuffed animal a lot, it would be good to sew up the seam using thread instead after you’ve glued it.

Bigger Repairs

For bigger, more serious problems, such as ripped seams or even ripped off limbs that have been torn from the body of an animal (example: if a bear’s head falls off), you will need to completely restuff your stuffed animal! To do this, turn your stuffed animal inside out and get some stuffing. 

You can buy new stuffing at a craft store or fabric store for pretty cheap, but sometimes you can also repurpose old stuffing from another project or something else- just make sure whatever you use is clean before putting it in! Then gently put the stuffing in through a hole on one of the seams (if there is one) or around the area that needs to be restuffed.

Try to distribute the stuffing evenly throughout your animal, and use a pencil or something else thin and hard to poke it in if necessary. Once you have finished putting all the stuffing in, turn your stuffed animal right-side-out again through whichever way will give you access best. Then stitch up any holes with a needle and thread, being sure not to come too close to where you put the stuffing so it doesn’t fall out!

For very big problems, such as ripped seams along almost an entire side of an animal or ripped off limbs that are detached from their original part of an animal’s body (example: if the whole arm came off), don’t just stuff it back in! You will need to sew up the seams on that area of the animal. 

For this, you will have to turn your stuffed animal inside out, which is done by putting your fingers inside its body and pulling upwards so that none of the insides are showing. 

Once all of the insides are turned outside, use a needle and thread to sew along where you ripped or cut- be sure not to sew through any part of the original seam so it doesn’t come undone later down the road! Again, take your time sewing so your stitches are nice and tight.

Never do what I did when I was younger: rip open seams instead of simply cutting them with scissors. Not only is ripping much harder work because you have to sew it back together later, but you’re also much more likely to rip open a seam again in the future because you’ve cut that section of thread. That might not seem like a big deal for a stuffed animal that’s just going to sit on a shelf and collect dust, but if you actually intend to play with your animal or wash it from time to time, cutting the seams is much better.

When stuffing comes out, don’t put it back inside! That looks terrible and provides no support whatsoever… 

Why would you do that? 

Small brown bear placed on log in nature

Just leave the stuffing out until you have time to fix whatever problems there are instead.

For little rips/tears/dents in floppy areas of an animal (such as under the arms of a bear, or at the bottom of a cat’s head), it is best to simply stuff that area with paper. For example, if you have an animal missing an arm, just take some scraps of paper and stuff it into that floppy area any way you can until the stuffing looks about right inside. 

Don’t worry about being neat because nobody will ever see your secret little touch! The same goes for any other floppy parts- keep them supported so they don’t look weird when you put the animal down.

If necessary, try to find fabric in matching colors next time you are shopping so you can stitch up seams without needing much thread. But this would only be necessary if there are large amounts of exposed white thread showing.


If you have a stuffed animal that needs to be fixed, here are some quick ideas to get started. You can find more information about specific sewing techniques and materials on the internet. Have fun with your new project!

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