Crafting for Cats: How to DIY Toys, Treats, & More

September 28, 2020
cat toys
cat treats
DIY cat toys

When it comes to DIY for your cat, the pawsibilities might seem endless. There are tutorials, recipes, and instructions for how to make just about anything you might want to make for your cat. But how can you narrow them down?

We asked one of our feline specialists to take a look at our favourite DIY cat projects and help us choose the very best ones. We’ve included tips here for making sure your DIY crafts are as safe as possible for your kitty.The best part? Most of these ideas don’t require any special tools or supplies, meaning you can put them to test with your kitties right away.

Upcycle For Hours of Feline Entertainment

If you’ve just finished a good clean out of your closets, decided it’s time to part with the stacks of empty Amazon boxes in your storage room, or you’ve finally accepted that those lone socks from the dryer will never find their mate again, you can try one of these easy upcycling projects.

DIY Cat Sock Toys

All you need for this one is a sock, some paper stuffing, and the ability to tie a knot to create easy and quick ‘fish’ toys that your cat will love to kick around. We whipped one up to try it out and the reviews are good!

Our Feline Specialist Tip: “As with any cat toy, always check the toy before every use for signs of wear, like loose thread, holes, or other potential hazards. Supervise your kitty while they play, and put it away between uses. Rotating toys by putting them away will also help keep them fresh and exciting! My cats’ favourite sock filling is catnip (in a baby sock tied with a sock knot so there is nothing they can choke on).”

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DIY Cat Tent

We’re sort of in love with this adorable way to turn an old t-shirt into a cozy cat hideaway. This instructables tutorial has everything you need to create a new fave place for your cat to lounge.

Our Feline Specialist Tip: “Make sure that those cut coat hanger ends are really well covered with tape or padding. If you can find baby diaper safety pins, those are safer because they won’t spring open. But it may still be a good idea to supervise your kitty using this just in case.”

Cardboard Cat Toys

We all know cats love a good cardboard box, so we gave these DIY cardboard toys a test. As we suspected, cardboard toys are as exciting as cardboard boxes. Beau was so excited that he started chirping at the ‘mouse’ before we even set it down for him to check out.When making these, just be sure to keep curious kitties away while you’re using the X-acto blade. All our crafty activity drew a feline audience.

Our Feline Specialist Tip: “For cats who love to chew, this might not be the best option, as they might end up ingesting cardboard. Keep a close eye on your cat, and if they’re getting a bit too excited munching on the toy, remove it (reward them for a successful playtime with a treat or two!).”

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Build a Perch Other Cats Will Be Jealous Of

For cat lovers who feel a little more ambitious (and more comfortable with power tools), Home Depot has a great video tutorial for building cat towers, from basic cat trees to more advanced kitty condos and wall-mounted trees.If you aren’t quite ready to commit to this level of crafting, Martha Stewart has instructions for building an adorable cardboard playhouse instead.

Our Feline Specialist Tip: “Perches and climbing structures are super important for helping a cat feel safe AND for exercise. If you use sisal rope or carpet on vertical or horizontal surfaces for scratching, make sure the structure is stable. Nothing worse than losing your balance when you were about to really get into it!”

Whip Up Treats They’ll Purr For

If baking is more your DIY style, we also found a few fun homemade treat recipes.

Our friends at Hill’s have a few recommendations for making treats out of the food your cat already eats – wet or dry!

Want to try chewy cat treats? This recipe might be just the ticket to winning over your cat at treat time.

Multi-pet households might enjoy this Frozen Tuna treat recipe – perfect for cats and dogs (and hot days!)

Our Feline Specialist Tip: “We do recommend that you ask your veterinarian about this (or at least mention to them that you’re ready to bake some treats for your cat), because the ingredients your cat goes crazy for might possibly not be the best ones for her if she has food sensitivities. Also, restrict cat treats to 10% of your kitty’s daily calorie requirements so the nutritional composition doesn’t become unbalanced. And…sigh… just like us, too many treats just packs on the calories. And we don’t want that!”

Will you try any of these DIY cat projects? Share your pictures and kitty reviews with us!

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