Have you ever been to the pet store and seen the price tags on even the simplest of dog toys? You’d be amazed to find that a chew toy can cost up to $15, or a ball will run you between $5 and $10. Why spend a fortune on your dog toys when you can just make them for your pet at a much lower price? You’ll need a few simple items – most of which you can find around your house – and you’ll be able to make great toys for your dog yourself.
Want a good toy to throw around with your dog? Get yourself an old, sturdy sock – preferably woolen, as the natural material is much more durable than cotton or synthetic fibers – and place a tennis ball, rubber bouncing ball, or water-filled plastic ball into it. Tie off the sock as close to the ball as you can, and use the rest of the sock as a handle to whirl the ball around and fling it as far away as possible. This is a great toy if your dog is still little, but woe unto the toy the minute he starts chewing at it!
This is a good toy if you have a small dog that loves to play fetch, and it can even bear up under a whole lot of gnawing from a larger dog. Cut a hole through a tennis ball, and run a rope through the holes. Tie the rope off as close to one side as you can, and tie it tightly on the other side so that the rope doesn’t move around. If you have a long rope, you can tie a whole bunch of knots into one end – where the dog will be able to chew to his heart’s content. It’s a great toy that makes playing around a whole lot of fun!
The Sock of Treats
Got a few woolen socks lying around the house? Perhaps that knitting project you started didn’t really turn out as much like a sweater as you wanted it to? Fill the cloth with a few dog treats, and tie it tightly so that the treats won’t slip out. Give it to the dog, and let him chew through it. It will keep him occupied for a while, though he’ll get through the cloth to the treats in just a few minutes. Every time you need something to keep him busy, though, break out a new sock and make a new “treat toy”.
For another great cloth chew toy, grab any old kitchen towels that you have lying around. Slice them all into three strips, and tie the strips together to form three long strips of cloth. Tie the strips at one end, and start braiding them all together. Once you have finished braiding the cloth, you’ll have a thick chew toy that your dog will spend hours tearing apart!
If you don’t want to spend time braiding the cloths, simply tie them all together to make one long strip. Tie a knot at one end, and follow it up with another knot, and another knot, and another. Keep tying knots until the entire length of cloth is knotted, and let your dog gnaw away at that long strip of knotted fabric. If you want to make it extra delicious, soak the knotted length of cloth in a beef broth – adding that meaty flavor Pooch will love!
If you’ve got a length of garden hose that you’re no longer using, you can turn it into a simple hoop for your dog to play with. Cut it to a length of between 4 and 5 feet, and cut a straight branch to about 18 inches in length. Insert half of the stick into one end of the hose, and bend the other end of the hose around to insert the other half of the stick and close the hoop. If you want to use zip ties to tighten the hose around the stick, it will stop the hoop from coming undone.
A few simple toys, but great for your dog – and great for your wallet!