Paw-ssion project: DIY dog toys
Dog toys are a very important part of your dog’s life. Our little buddies love having a variety of toys, which they use for expressing love, playing, sleeping with and generally keeping by their side.
The general recommendation is to limit the number of toys your dog has access to at a certain time. This ensures that if your dog grows tired of a toy, you can simply hide it and bring out another one. Over time, he’ll grow tired once again, at which point you can take out the toy you hid, and as he hasn’t played with it in a while, he’ll get very excited about it.
However, from time to time, we do have some issues with toys, as he seems to be bored with his ones (even if I pull the switcheroo), tired of the same games, or simply needs something new in his life (just because they’re dogs, doesn’t mean they don’t have preferences and/or can need some change).
Thus, I’ve done research and found, as well as came up with, some toys that you can make easily at home, and I’m pleased to share them with you! Some are quite simple, while others may need some effort to make. Check them out!
This one is barely even a project. I’ve noticed since my dog was a young puppy that he loved playing with bottles. I remove the plastic over the bottle and the lid before giving it to him, and place the bottle in an old sock, which I knot at one end, and it instantly becomes a toy he can play with.
The sock helps protect him in case he breaks the plastic, which can cut him otherwise. Either way, make sure to monitor the state of the toy to make sure it’s removed if it’s about to break or anything else that may be dangerous.
I usually go for half a liter or smaller bottles, as he’s a Maltese and these are a good fit for him to easily hold with his mouth. You can choose a bigger bottle based on your dog’s size.
Knotted rope or T-shirt
If you have extra rope hanging around, or have an old t-shirt you no longer need, you can try braiding it to make a thick, tug-able toy for your dog. Basically, take three rope pieces, or cut your old shirt into three pieces, and make a classic braid, tying the two ends with extra pieces of rope or shirt. This is really fun to play tug-o-war with, and you can also use it to toss and play. Fun for the whole family!
Tennis ball toys
If you have any old tennis balls lying around, you can try making some toys for your dog with them! For instance, you can consider putting a rope through it and making a knot at both ends, which makes for a fun game of tug. Alternatively, you can put it inside an old towel or any other cloth and tie it in, which makes it easier to throw and play with.
If you have any old jeans you no longer need, consider cutting pieces of them and simply knotting them together, until you’re sure its intact and well-knotted. Not only is denim durable, it’s also a great toy for your dog to play catch with or just play around with on his own. Definitely recommended!
If your dog is athletic, or you want to train him to be more athletic, you can try getting him to jump over different blocks for practice. Similar to the concept of the toilet paper wall challenge on Tik-Tok (click here to watch some incredible adorable pups try the challenge), you can create different blocks using anything stackable, such as books, water bottles, plastic cups, toilet rolls (like the challenge).
Hiding treats in places that are challenging for your dog to access is great for improving your dog’s cognitive skills and can also help entertain them with little help. This interactive dog toy is a great and simple way to get your dog thinking while playing around, and needs little to nothing in order to prepare. All you need is some treats, a bowl, and some empty toilet rolls.
Toys like these aren’t limited to the version I linked though! Similar to the concept behind Kong toys, but much more budget friendly, you can try hiding treats inside tennis balls, ice cubs or popsicles, PVC pipes, bottles or many other ideas, which gets your dog to put his skills into the test and get his treats on his own.
These are some of my favorite DIY dog toys and games, but I know there are many more out there. Have you ever tried any of the ones I mentioned? Did your dog enjoy it? Or do you have better ones to suggest? Let us know in the comments below!
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Have a paw-some day!