A great way to help your child prepare for or get comfortable with having a feeding tube is to make or buy a doll or stuffed animal equipped with a feeding tube. When a child has a toy that looks like him or her and feeds in the same way, your child will likely feel more confident and comfortable with the feeding tube.

There are several options available for obtaining a stuffed friend with a feeding tube. One is requesting one from Tubie Friends, a nonprofit that uses “surgeons” to create a stuffed animal with the exact type of feeding tube your child has. The stuffed friend can have an NG-tube, G-tube, or GJ-tube. In addition, they are able to create Tubie Friends with other medical technologies including trachs, oxygen cannulas, and central lines. Tubie Friends are available free of charge, though they request a donation to cover shipping. No family will be turned away.

Making Your Own Tube Doll or Stuffed Animal

Another option is to make your own doll or stuffed animal with a feeding tube. A pictorial is presented below.