We tend to forget that it does not take a lot of effort to amuse our pets. The same goes with toys. Before dipping into your savings to buy the latest fancy toy for your pup, consider making a personalized one using things that can be easily found around your house. All you need are two or three items that can creatively be recycled and lots of imagination. Try a couple of these crafty toys and you never have to overspend on keeping your pet amused again!
One of the easiest toys to make is made of a ball and a sturdy sock. Make sure that the ball is big enough so your pup can’t swallow it. Most people use tennis balls, but you can even use newspaper that’s crumpled together to form a tight ball. Place the ball snugly inside the sock and tie a tight knot to complete the toy.
Another way to create a ball toy is to tightly compress some sheets of newspaper into a ball, then completely cover all of the surfaces with duct tape. This toy would give hours of fun for your dog to swat and chase around. Make sure to supervise your pooch when playing so they wouldn’t swallow the ball or chew through the duct tape.
In most DIY tutorials, you literally need one thing to make a tug toy work – a piece of fabric. Whether it’s fleece, an old kitchen towel, old shirts, or denim jeans, the possibilities are endless with the type of pull toys you can create. I have even tied varies “body parts” of old toys together to create one “new” toy. Braid the fabric to create a simple pull toy. Durable fabric such as denim would make for a sturdier toy when braided tightly.
Chew toys can come in all forms and sizes. One of the simplest chew toys that you can give your pooch is a plastic bottle (without the label and the plastic cap). Flatten the bottle and enclose it around some fabric. A sock, cut up denim jeans, or old towels would do. Sew any openings shut before giving it to your dog. The crinkly sound of the plastic bottle will keep them entertained for hours!
Treat Dispensing Toys
This is a great toy for dogs with separation anxiety. You can insert a few treats in the toy before you leave and they wouldn’t even notice that you’re gone! Plastic containers are great for small breeds or dogs that are not chewers. The tougher material, like PVC plastic tubes, are recommended for bigger dogs and dogs who tend to chew through anything and everything. Cut small holes in the containers big enough that would allow the treats to go through. Fill the container with some dry kibble treats and make sure to securely close the container. Show your pooch that treats fall through the holes and let them go wild with it.
Most of these toys are easy to make with no time at all. A note of caution, though – it helps to remember that we should ALWAYS supervise our pets’ playtime. Most dogs will chew through anything and swallow everything! Knowing your dog’s personality and using common sense will save you from a trip to the vet and a heavy medical bill.
Also, be certain to know the signs and how to act should your pup start to choke – take a pet first aid & CPR class NOW!