Have you noticed DockaTot’s are all the rage these days on Instagram? I have long wondered what is so amazing about this baby item and why moms seem to like it. When DockATot offered to send me one to try, I was pretty stoked to see what the fuss was all about! I will say upfront that it would have had a better lifespan if I had this from day one. However, even at 5 months, there are ways this has come in handy!
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If you didn’t know, the DockATot comes in two sizes. The smaller one (see the Deluxe here) is made for babies 0-8 months and has a toy set attachment you can purchase separately. The larger is called the Grand and it is for babies 3-36 months.
It’s used as a place to set your baby down safely, a portable bed, and for co-sleeping. The thing that is unique about it is that it’s tested for breathability, so if your baby turned their face into it they could still breath.
Each DockaTot is handmade in Europe, made from 100% cotton, and OEKO-TEX certified.
What I use our DockaTot Deluxe for with a 5-month-old
I have never been a co-sleeper with any of our babies, so I cannot speak to its usefulness there.
Setting him down.
It’s not designed to keep a baby from rolling, but he can’t get that leg over yet with the tall sides. Desmond can almost roll over though so that’s why I cannot use this anywhere unless it’s on the ground now. Sometimes he loves being on his back, but not as much as he used to now that he is always trying to roll. So I’d say this is the most useful prior to the roll stage.
Cool thing is the DockATot Deluxe now has a toy arch that can be bought separately so that it takes the place of those other toy arch play mats! The timing couldn’t have been better as he just started reaching for everything.
He LOVES to be on his tummy, so I put his arms over the rounded top part and he just sits there happily for a long time! It props him up so he doesn’t have to work so hard to see us and keep that giant noggin up.
We have not traveled since getting this, but I will be taking it as his bed. It’s smaller than a pack N play and makes him feel tucked in when sleeping.
Features good and bad
Ok…my favorite colored DockATot is white…which means dirty sibling fingerprints all over it. If you have one baby and you are the only one to touch it, dismiss my warning! But with older kids, you will have to wash the cover often to keep it white.
Washing the cover is easy! I can just unzip it, wash on cold, and lay flat to dry. (I don’t use heat as the cover could shrink). Also, beware of toddlers who like to unzip everything that has a zipper in the house…this will be included.
Handles along the sides make it easy to carry. I take this upstairs and downstairs a lot. (But beware, toddlers are tempted to pull this around so I’m teaching mine not to pull for safety reasons).
This comes with a clear bag with a zipper and handle, so it would be easy to carry this to the car or airplane and keep it clean that way!
One downside for me is that I can’t rock him to sleep in it like he is used to in his Fisher Price Rock’n’Play. I think he is just used to that motion so he doesn’t fall asleep without a fuss if not rocked.
The toy arch is removable! I’ve noticed with a toddler around the hanging toys and hooks disappear a lot…so I kind of wish they were just sewn into the arch. I also wish the toys hung down farther or had a pull type spring because he can’t reach them well without pulling the whole arch down. However, Desmond LOVES holding the detached toy and making scrunchy sounds.
The arch is not washable and it is white…which means after a couple of months ours is now pretty dirty and I can’t really get it new looking again.
Update at 7 months:
He now falls asleep fine in it as we practiced putting him down after nursing and letting him cry for a couple minutes. He then goes right to sleep if he is actually tired. If not, I just get him up. I think he likes the ‘cuddled in feeling’ because he kind of rolls sideways as close to the edges as he can get.
He found his hands about one month ago (and toes), which seem to be great chew toys when nothing else is around.
Overall I’d say this DockATot Deluxe would be a great thing to have from day 1, as a clean, safe place to set your precious new baby. It would give the peace of mind that your baby is safe, and would substitute putting them on a blanket or something. It would also be ideal for moms who want to sleep with the baby in their bed but do it safely.