In 1980, CBS Toys released a 22-inch tall Big Bird plush under the Child Guidance label. It had a vinyl beak, plastic eyes, yarn "feathers" on the top of its head and a yarn tail. A string on its back could be pulled to make it say a number of short phrases such as "I live on Sesame Street, "I love you very much," and "I eat birdseed". Caroll Spinney recorded the voice for the doll. There was also a hole in the back of Big Bird's head where a child could use his finger to move the beak.

Another version was released in 1984 with fatter legs and a slightly different shaped body.

The toy makes a cameo appearance in the 1984 film The Muppets Take Manhattan, during Miss Piggy's Muppet Babies dream sequence. In the scene, Baby Piggy sings "I'm Gonna Always Love You", listing all the things that she'll do when she grows up. Baby Rowlf chimes in with the lyric, "She'll be a doctor of diseases, and help you with your sneezes!" Rowlf is dressed up like a doctor -- and his patient is the Big Bird talking plush.

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