Tough to say kind words about the louse...but ain't he cute?
Our Stuffed Louse Toy
This engaging, realistic-looking stuffed louse is soft and floppy. It is made of durable soft plush. The legs and antennae are made of plush fabric. Our louse is gentle and loving and promises not to bite. Check out our other lice toys and gifts.
The word louse, singular for lice, is a common term for a large number of different kind of lice. Different kinds of lice are found on a myriad of host animals, including humans. Lice are so differentiated that various body parts have their own kind of lice. Humans are afflicted primarily by head lice (Pediculus humanus capitis), body lice (Pediculus humanus humanus), which live in clothing, and others, which live in body hair. The louse looks like a small flat ant. It feeds on skin debris and sucks blood. It produces eggs called nits which attach to the host's hair. The louse is an irritant for many animals, especially birds and monkeys. Much itching and scratching are the result of bothersome lice. Many animals get help from other animals to pick them off. Humans can treat head lice by cutting hair shorter, combing with a stiff comb and by shampooing with various special conditioners.
The Tag on Our Stuffed Louse Says:
FACTS: Lice infestations are one of the most common communicable conditions suffered by children. Nevertheless, as unsanitary conditions are sometimes believed to promote lice, their appearance can quickly put sufferers (not to mention parents and school administrators) in a very hairy situation!
In fact, head lice are generally indifferent to environmental conditions beyond their natural territory, namely the scalp. (Most lice can't even survive for more than a day or so away from the heat of the body.) In addition, lice can't fly orjump, so transmission most commonly occurs through direct bodily contact or through sharing of personal items such as combs, hats, sweaters, and towels.
Still, close quarters can certainly contribute to the spread of lice. In the World War I trenches, lice was rampant and soldiers cropped their hair short to try to avoid the "cooties" (a term thought to derive from the Malay word kutu, or biting parasite - though how the word traveled to the trenches is unknown.)
If you do discover a lice infestation, there are special shampoos, and even chemical treatments, that can be used to address it. Specialty fine-tooth combs can also help pick lice and nits (or lice eggs) from hair. Finally, bedding and clothes should be well cleaned - and perhaps even discarded. Worth remembering if you're feeling lousy!