Dog toys can get expensive. Making your own not only saves you money but can be a bonding session with your favorite furry animal. Here are 15 dog toy hacks that are not only easy to make, but will keep your dog occupied for hours—or at least several minutes.
Note: While it’s crucial to always supervise your dog when they’re playing with their toys, it’s also important to regularly inspect them for damage. Throw away any toys that are coming apart. You don’t want your dog to ever swallow anything harmful.
1. Cut a one-inch hole in a tennis ball and fill it with peanut butter or small dog treats.
The best part about this DIY chew toy is the felt on the ball that keeps the rubber from tearing. If you do see the tennis ball coming apart, take it away immediately.
2. Scrunch up an empty water bottle, put it in a sock, and knot it.
3. Bake a sliced sweet potato and pull a strong rope through the pieces.
Use a cookie cutter to cut the insides out of sweet potato slices so there’s a large enough opening to fit the rope through the center. Sweet potatoes are packed with nutrients for both you and your furry friend. Follow the recipe and instructions here.
4. Cut the bottom off an old pair of jeans and tie it into a solid denim knot.
5. Put treats inside an empty cereal box and tape it up.
Your pup will have a great time tearing apart a cardboard box to get to the treats inside. It also helps make more room in the recycle bin.
6. Fill the fingers of an old glove with treats and sew up the open end.
7. Drill holes into a 12-inch PVC pipe and place treats inside.
This is the kind of toy that challenges your dog and puts their mental and physical abilities to work. You’ll need a PVC pipe, PVC cap, a threaded cap, and 1/2 inch to 1/4 inch drill bits. Follow these instructions on how to make it.
8. Put a tennis ball inside a sock and tie knots on both ends.
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9. Put treats in a paper towel tube and fold up the ends.
Another option is to cut slits on both ends and fold them in. Expect to clean up afterwards.
10. Hide treats in a muffin pan under tennis balls.
Your dog can go into sleuthing mode to try and figure out where the treats are hidden.
11. Braid and knot two sets of colored fabric strips, then knot the center.
Follow these instructions here.
12. Fill a bucket with water, chicken broth, and dog toys, then freeze overnight.
Help your pooch keep cool in the hot summer and spend hours tasting their way to their toys.
13. Cut a hole in a plastic, lidded container and add treats.
Your dog will have fun rolling the container around to force the treats out. For extra security, duct-tape the lid down. Remember to never leave your dog alone with a toy like this.
14. Roll a towel lengthwise and tie a knot at the end.
This makes for a sturdy toy to chew on that’s still soft on your dog’s mouth.
15. Cut a hole on both ends of a tennis ball and pull a rope through it.
Tie a knot on both ends of the rope and play a game of tug of war with your dog.