If your dog loves his fleecy toys, chances are he literally loves them "to death" and you're picking up bits of toy stuffing and a dead squeaker off your carpet. When this happens days--or even hours--after you've bought the toy and brought it home, it's easy to feel like you're wasting your money. You can save a lot of money and frustration by making your own fleece dog toys. Here's how.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Things you need
- Fleecy fabric
- Sewing machine
- Polyester fiberfill stuffing
- Squeakers (optional)
- Yesterday's newspaper
- Bubble wrap (optional)
Find the right fabric remnant. With a little digging in the remnant bin at your local fabric store or Hobby Lobby (or even Wal-Mart) you can probably find exactly what you need for a lot less money than buying it off the bolt. Look for fake fur, sweatshirt fleece or faux lamb fur fleece--dogs love them all.
Make some patterns. The design of your homemade dog toy is limited only by your imagination: bone, cat, ball, fire hydrant, tree, steak, stick. Draw the pattern on a page from yesterday's newspaper, adding about 1/2 inch extra all the way around for seam allowance. Cut it out, pin to your fabric, cut two from the fabric, and stitch together. Make sure to leave a couple of inches unsewn so you can turn the unstuffed toy right side out and stuff it. If you absolutely cannot draw, find a basic colouring book for toddlers. It will have all the basic shapes you need as patterns.
Stuff it. Fill the toy with polyester fiberfill stuffing, and sew the opening shut. For variety, add some crumpled pieces of yesterday's newspaper and/or bubble wrap. The toy will then crackle and pop slightly, piquing your dog's interest. Other cheap stuffing material include: old pantyhose, clean rags and dry, dead leaves.
Squeak or no squeak. If your dog really loves squeaky toys--and doesn't eat the squeaker when he tears them apart--consider adding a squeaker or two to the toy. See the web link, below, for a cheap source of dog toy squeakers. If your dog is likely to eat the squeaker, leave it out --he could choke on the hard, tiny parts.
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