How to Make Homemade Dog Toys

Comet with a handmade padded stick dog toy.

It’s such fun to make homemade dog toys!  

They can be quite inexpensive too – often all you need to make your own dog toys is to hunt for the materials around the house.

We have oodles of different ideasfor making homemade dog toys, with many contributions from dog lovers around the world. 

WARNING: Please supervise if your dog chews on these! Little bits of sock can cause choking or digestive problems.

Stuffed Dog Toys

Star pattern dog toy from Make and Build Dog Stuff

Are you interested in making durable stuffed and/or squeaky doggie toys out of fabric? 

We have several dog toy patterns to choose from, like the Daisy Pattern at right, with detailed instructions for making it.

Best Homemade Dog Chew Toys

Our website contains multiple ideas for making some of the toughest dog chew toys, many of them provided by our generous visitors!

Our current favorite is the fabric scraps bone. That page also contains a word about materials and an outline of the toy ideas presented on the pages below:

Of  course, puppies are most in need of something to gnaw on. That’s why we have a whole page on dog teething toys that you can make!

PLEASE ALWAYS supervise your puppy or adult dog with any toy they chew on. 

Dogs can choke on pieces of all kinds of things. Swallowed materials can also cause obstructions or blockages in the dog’s digestive tract, which can mean major surgery or even death.

Dog Exercise Toys

The Whipwhir (“Whipper”) is one toy Comet did not get bored with and that our other dogs have enjoyed too.

Again, this is a very simple thing to make, and it provides great exercise, indoors or out, making it especially useful for those bad weather inside days.

Note: The Whipwhir has SAFETY INSTRUCTIONS that are important to follow.

Dog Fetch Toys

Another type of exercise toy that is easy peasy to make and for which we have several ideas are Chuck Its, where you can send a ball a long distance for the dog to retrieve.

We also have miscellaneous dog ball toy ideas for keeping a dog on the go or for entertaining your dog.

Maggie, from Bellingham, Washington, suggested another simplefetch toy you could make. We would advise changing out the food regularly.

What you need:
Sturdy fabric (like from an old backpack)
Sewing stuff
Dry dog food

Cut the fabric into two squares 6 by 6 inches. 
Sew together three sides of it. Fill it with dog kibble.
Sew the rest together.

Homemade Dog Toys Out of  Socks

It’s amazingly easy to create dog playthings out of old socks, and who doesn’t have some orphan or worn out socks somewhere? Plus they’re washable or can be composted when your dog is done with them.

The Basic Sock Ball and the Sock Swing Ball were two that Comet enjoyed so we made him lots.

Guests to this site have added their own versions of how to Make Dog Toys Out of Socks at:

Tug Toys

Like Bailey, featured leaping for a frisbee in the photo at the top of the page, many dogs enjoy tug-of-war games with either humans or other dogs. 

We have two pages of visitor contributions for tug toys:

Homemade tug toys made of fleece, rope and socks

Inexpensive tug toys made of other materials

Unusual Dog Toys

German Shepard playing with dog toy.

Paddio Sticks are indoor/outdoor dog chase and chew toys that really intrigued Comet.

Somewhat like a Teaser Ball, they bounce, roll and switch direction. 

Watch out for that dogling rivalry if you have more than one dog, as they’re sure to try and steal them from one another!

Once he caught up to a Paddio Stick or Crossie, Comet could chew to his heart’s content since I could always make another!

NOTE: MUST BE SUPERVISED. As with any chew toy, homemade or not, please do not leave your dog alone with it.

Materials for Paddio Stick

paddio stick dog toy
  • A large old T-shirt, sheet, socks or any clothing article you can make into strips
  • Colored tape or rag of a different color than the shirt
  • Sticks, 1 /2 to 1 inch (15 to 25 mm) in diameter, about a foot-long

Note: Green sticks that bend rather than break, are preferable, and crooked sticks rather than totally straight add a little extra fun. If the ends are really pointed and sharp, saw them and sand the edges so they are rounded.

How to Make Dog Toys
Instructions: Paddio Stick & Paddio Crossie

For the basic Paddio Stick:

  • Cut/tear strips about 2 inches (5 cm) wide and as long as possible from the T-shirt ([If you tear horizontally you’ll get the longest pieces]
  • Take a strip of rag and lay the stick on it.
  • Wrap lengthwise a couple of times, covering the ends of the stick.
  • Tightly wind the rest of your strip around the stick and previous wrapping.
  • When that strip ends, start with another, overlapping the ends.
  • Keep on with another strip or two, remembering to wrap tightly.
  • Tuck the last end under previous wraps, using a knife to help.
  • For a decorative touch, apply plastic tape or a different colored strip around the ends.

For the Paddio Crossie:

  • Take two sticks and wrap per above.
  • Lay them crosswise and use another strip of rag to bind them firmly together in the middle.

Instructions: Paddio Triangle

The following Triangle toy is similar, only you’ll need three sticks. 

Comet really enjoyed chewing on this one because he could hold onto it so well with his paws.

Triangle dog toy
  • Take three sticks and wrap each of them per the Crossie above
  • Lay the sticks in a triangle, leaving about 2 inches (5 cm) sticking out at the ends
  • Wrap each corner firmly, going around and between each stick
  • To finish off, tie a knot and tuck the ends under a wrap
  • When you have all three angles done, add tape as desired

Uses: Play fetch by throwing or rolling along the ground or give to your puppy to chew on (under supervision only)

Basic Sock Ball

homemade sock ball toy for dogs

This takes about 5 minutes and you will need 3 or 4 holey socks

  • Use your longest sock with the least/smallest holes for the base.
  • Roll and stuff the other socks inside.
  • Twist or tie a knot in the base sock above the stuffed area.
  • Double the end of the base sock back over the entire ball.
  • Twist or tie a knot above the stuffed area again.
  • Repeat until you have no sock left to wrap. 

The Sock Ball is best used for playing fetch, indoors or out. You can also make mini sock balls for smaller dogs by using thinner and shorter socks.

Swinging Sock Ball

Homemade swinging sock ball toy for dogs.

This also takes about 5 minutes and uses 3-4 socks. However, you will need a couple of really long socks.

  • Take 1 or 2 of your longest socks for the base
  • Roll and stuff the two other socks inside
  • Tie a knot in the base sock(s) above the stuffed area

The Sock Swing Ball can be used for fetch, tug-of-war, or as an attachment to that marvelous indoor/outdoor toy and exercise device, The Whipwhir (pronounced “whipper”).

Thanks for being willing to learn how to make dog toys! [The first time I typed that it came out as “hog” toys – maybe they’ll work for a pet pig too! 🙂 Jo