If you’re a first time mom then you don’t know yet that unless you are incredibly strong willed you will eventually succumb to the co-sleeping option with your child. There are just some nights where you are so utterly exhausted and they are so ornery that there is nothing else you can do but bring them into your bed and snuggle with them all night long. And that is OK. You should also realize that there is an art to co-sleeping and some steps for safety that absolutely must be taken. One of the best tools that The Baby Cubby has found is DockAtot! Designed in Sweden and made in Europe, these little baby loungers are absolutely fantastic for SO many reasons – even more so than just co-sleeping!
The DockAtot Deluxe
The Deluxe DockAtot is the premiere dock for little ones. Accommodating infants from birth until about 8 months old (or longer depending on the size of your babe. According to the DockAtot parents tend to think their infant has outgrown the Deluxe dock before they actually have!), the Deluxe dock is perfect for supervised naps, tummy time, co-sleeping, snuggling, play time, use as a changing pad and more! Measuring in at 18″ wide and 29″long with the child friendly clip closed, this Dock will have your new babe snuggled in and ready for anything. And, weighing in a t only 3.1lbs, the Deluxe DockAtot is incredibly easy to transport!
Some guidelines to always remember when using the DockAtot Deluxe:
- This is not for use in a crib or bassinet. You must only use it in the center of a firm mattress or on the floor.
- When co-sleeping please take these extra precautions:
- Remove all toys
- Remove excess bedding like pillows and mattress padding
- Never use on a waterbed
- Always place the infant face up and in the center of the dock
- Ensure no window cords can be reached from the bed
- Do not let your infant co-sleep with older children
- Do not co-sleep with both infants and pets simultaneously
- Adults who are extremely obese should not co-sleep with an infant
- Never place the dock on the edge of the bed. It should always be placed in the center.
- Never carry baby while in the dock
The DockAtot Grand
The DockAtot Grand dock is the “graduate” dock for your littles! From 9mos – 3 years old your darlings can call this dock home as they snuggle between the comfy arms that they know and love! Perfect for bed transitions, a portable bed, or just plain old snuggle time – trust me, you will get a lot of use out of this dock. The reason the Grand dock is perfect for bed transitions is because of the amazing side bumpers. Just like on the Deluxe dock, these bumpers help your little one feel cradled and secure – almost like they are being held. These are feelings that children often feel like they lose when they are transitioned from a smaller crib or toddler bed, to a larger single or full sized bed. By providing your child with this sense of security the transition will (hopefully) go a lot smoother than bed transitions tend to have! Measuring in at 24″ wide and 39-47″ long (depending on if the clasps are closed or open) your Grand DockAtot should be able to fit anywhere and everywhere you need it!
Some guidelines to always remember when using the DockAtot Grand:
- The Grand DockAtot should always be used with the legs unbuckled. The buckle on the Grand is solely for ease of transportation and storage.
- When placing on a bed, the Grand dock should only be used in the center of the bed and at a height that is manageable for the child to get down from on their own.
- The DockAtot Grand is only for use in a toddler or kid-sized bed.
- The sides of the the Grand DockAtot are less firm than those of the Deluxe, to allow for the child to use the sides of the Grand dock as a pillow as needed.
Now for the Good Stuff
Ok, so those were all great features. But do you want to know what makes both the DockAtot Deluxe and Grand so special? There’s quite a few things!
Yes, you read that right! From the 100% cotton cover to the breathable bumper tube, everything is machine washable! However, please be advised that the mattress pad should not be bent ever, which means that machine washing it could cause irreparable damage to the pad. This means that the mattress pad is hand-wash only!
Some things to keep in mind when washing your DockAtot:
- The cover is 100% cotton which means that it will shrink too much if not washed properly! The DockAtot cover should be washed in cold water with like colors, a non-bleach detergent, and laid flat to dry. Any tumble drying or “blitz drying” (using hot air or a hot surface to dry it) will cause too much shrinkage. Always wash in a wash bag.
- The bumper tube should hardly ever need washing, usually shaking it out and letting it ventilate for a day will clear anything out just fine. However, if you do need to actually wash the tube then place in a wash bag, wash in cold water with a non-bleach detergent, tumble dry low, shake out, and lay flat to dry if still damp.
- The mattress pad should only ever be hand-washed with a gentle detergent and laid flat to dry. Do not ever wash in a washing machine as it will cause irreparable bends to the pad.
In Britain there is a standard for all infant pillows that dictates a pillow should allow 12 liters of air per minute through it, which is how much a baby typically breathes. This is to ensure that if a child had their nose and mouth pressed against the pillow they would still have access to fresh air and avoid asphyxiation. Although DockAtot is not technically a pillow, they felt it was important to ensure that they complied with these standards. So, DockAtot can officially say that they meet the British standard BS4578 for air-permeability for infant pillows! That is definitely going above and beyond. You can rest easy knowing that even the squirmiest baby will be able to breathe fresh air throughout the night, even if they wiggle into the tiniest corner of their dock.
Because everything a DockAtot is made out of is air-permeable, non-waterproof, all-natural materials that work to not harbor heat you can kiss the days of wondering if baby is too hot or too cold goodbye. As long as your child is dressed correctly for the season and temperature of their room, baby should stay at just right all night long. That is why the area inside of the DockAtot is referred to as a “micro-climate.” It is affected by the “climate” (AKA the room you are in) but because of its design and materials, the DockAtot works hard to keep it’s own climate just perfect.
Reinventing the Womb
One of DockAtot’s beliefs, “Reinvention of the womb,” is probably the perfect representation of their product. The bumper is designed to be close to baby so that they feel cradled and wrapped up, just like in the womb! This is especially helpful for babes who tend to startle themselves awake due to the Moro Reflex. In their dock, babes feel such a sense of closeness that they are immediately comforted even after being startled, which allows them to drift back to sleep peacefully.
DockAtot’s covers will seem quite small for the dock itself, especially on the Deluxe dock. This is done on purpose! The reason the cover fits a little small is so that the Deluxe DockAtot will have the correct firmness for the bumper in order to use the dock for tummy time. Because you will need to pack the bumper tube inside of the cover, you will be able to feel (and see) the extra firm bumpers. This again not only provides a great tool for tummy time, but also helps us parent rest a little easier knowing that babe won’t be able to roll over the bumper. For the Grand dock’s, the covers do not fit quite as snug so as to reduce the “fill” and create a softer bumper for children to use as a pillow.
Keep in mind as well that because the covers are so tight, your mattress pad will have a natural curve to it. Although harsh bending is not ok for your mattress pad, this natural curve is just fine.
Guarding Against Accidents
Because the DockAtot was created with breathability in mind, the use of any waterproof materials will essentially ruin the function of the DockAtot in terms of its air-permiablity and micro-climate. DockAtot refrained from using any anti-dustmite, anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial chemicals in the fillings, which means you must do your best to keep the dock dry, well-ventilated, and clean to avoid any hygiene problems with your dock. If you added a waterproof sheet, or even laid the dock on top of a waterproof sheet or mattress you will prevent the ventilation of the dock, which in turn could lead to dampness in the dock’s filling causing problems in the future.
Because of the risks of ruining your dock with the use of a waterproof sheet and of your child overheating, DockAtot recommends that you place a muslin crib sheet over the dock, which will help protect the cover from accidents.
The Cardboard Base
When you receive your DockAtot you will feel a cardboard base where the mattress pad is. Simply dispose of this piece – it is simply there to prevent the mattress pad from being bent during shipping.
How to Store Your DockAtot
Always store your DockAtot in a cool, dry place that is not too tight and will not have anything laid on top of it. Always be mindful of the mattress pad being at risk for getting bent.
As you can see, DockAtot is a versatile piece of equipment that is useful for parents in any situation. Your little bugs will be safe and snug in their docks, and you can sleep peacefully knowing that no matter where they sleep, DockAtot will cradle them all night long.