Make Your Own Homemade Cat Toys

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Why Homemade Cat Toys?

Homemade cat toys are super easy to make and way more fun for your cats than expensive store-bought toys. On this page you can learn how to make all sorts of homemade cat toys.

On this page you'll find ideas for homemade cat toys made out of things you'd normally throw away. There are homemade cat toys made out random stuff. There are homemade cat toys to knit and crochet and build. Spend a little time making these cat toys and your kitty will have tons of fun!

Picture by me, AlishaV

Donate to Shelters

Make a few extra toys and donate to your local animal shelter. Making a couple more cat toys so you have some extras to give away is a wonderful way to
help homeless pets.

Always Be Careful

Toys should only be used under appropriate supervision.
Always be cautious. Strings can get tangled around kitty, buttons can come off, they can easily swallow and choke on millions of things.
Always use common sense, and remember, if your cat can get himself in trouble, he will.

Making Cat Toys Out of Everyday Objects


Making Cat Toys Out of Everyday Objects

Everyday Objects

Make these cat toys out of simple household items.
Make a Free Toilet Paper Tube Cat Toy
Make a super simple and free cat toy that your cats will love to whap around, using just a toilet paper tube and a pair of scissors.
Make Another Cat Toy Out of a Toilet Paper Tube
This is another idea for a cat toy made out of a toilet paper tube, again only needing scissors and an empty toilet paper tube to make it. All of my cats go nuts for these, but three are absolutely obsessive about them.
How to Make a Shiny Cat Toy
Cats love shiny, reflective things and this cat toy gives it to them.
Make a Cardboard Mouse
Make a mouse using cardboard and a template.

Kitties Playing with Carrots

The Carrot Killer

My cats really seem to like things that have fallen off the counter. Celery pieces, leafy lettuce or kale, and carrot circles are all favorites. The top of the list though, belongs to baby carrots. Brightly colored and a great shape, those little things are great for slapping around on the kitchen floor and slide really well. Occasionally, one of the cats will carry the baby carrot around in his mouth, like some sort of conquering champion. Give your cat a baby carrot to play with and see what they think.

Empty Boxes

Cat Playing with Box Empty boxes make great cat toys. Cats will usually claim a box as soon as it enters your home, and a few of mine try to jump inside them while I'm carrying them in. My bunch's favorite is probably soda boxes, they're a nice size and have a built in viewing port that doubles as an attack spot, lol. Any old box will do though, and adding holes to it makes it even more enticing.
Picture by me, AlishaV

Kitten Playing with a Wire

This video shows a kitten playing with a piece of wire, it seems like it would make a great homemade cat toy. If you do give your kitties a piece of wire to play with, use a pair of needle-nose pliers to bend the ends in so they aren't sharp points.
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Pizza Box Kitties

Cat Playing with Pizza Box Picture by me, AlishaV

Pizza Box Kitties

My kitties recently made another household item into a toy for themselves. We bought one of those premade pizzas that come in a regular pizza box, but are in a shrink wrapped package inside, specifically the Sam's Choice brand though I've seen other companies with the same style box. Well this pizza box has a nice hole in the top so people can see the pizza before they buy it and when the pizza box is closed, that hole is perfectly cat sized. My cats figured out that the pizza box is a super comfortable place to lounge in and any small toys chucked into the open hole are great fun to fish out from inside the box. Also, a couple of pizza boxes stood on end to make a square makes a fun hidey cube to play in.

Pill Bottle Cat Toy

Pill Bottle Toy

Many cats love to bat around a medicine bottle, but there's always the chance they could somehow get the child-proof cap off (seems like everyone but us can get those lids off) and the result could be death for your kitty. So the best way to turn a medicine bottle into a toy is to remove all the pills and scrub the container really well. Take a couple of dry beans or a small amount of dry rice and put them in the container, then put the lid back on. Cats love swatting this around the floor, and if they somehow get the lid off they won't get hurt.

Altering Household Items to Make Cat Toys


Altering Household Items to Make Cat Toys

Altered Normal Household Items

A little bit of work can make these household items into a toy any cat would love
Easy Pipe Cleaner Cat Toy
Make a super simple cat toy from a couple of pipe cleaners in mere minutes.
How to Make a Feathery Cat Toy
Only two items are needed to make this cat toy, which means it's quick and easy to make.
How to Make a Sock Animal Toy
Make a little character for your kitty to play with.
How to Make a Cheap Cat Toy That Kitty will Love
Hollow Easter eggs make great cat toys when used as in this article.
DIY Sock Fish Cat Toy
Use baby socks to make a cat toy that looks like a fish. This is a super easy craft.

Pens and Pencils

Most cat's love to play with pens and pencils, I know mine swipe them all the time. To make the pens safe for kitty, remove the ink cartridge and make sure the pen is clean before letting them have it. This is great to do with pens that are already out of ink instead of just throwing them away.

For pencils, make sure there is no sharp tip, completely unsharpened pencils are best. Also, be careful giving them pencils with erasers. Some cats will chew on these and swallow pieces. It's better if you pull off or cut off the eraser before giving it to your cat.

And of course, you can always just find a nice, clean little twig that's of similar size and shape to a pencil and give it to your cat to play with. The bonus with a twig is that it's often curved a bit and the not-perfectly straight shape can add more fun to your kitty's play.

The shape and size of pens and pencils is eternally interesting to most cats for some reason, and they'll most likely play with them for hours.

Alpine loves crinkly, fall leaves

Alpine loves crinkly, fall leaves

Alpine loves crinkly, fall leaves

Kitty Gym

Kitty Gym

Sometimes there's no good place to hang stuff for your cats to play with. A good idea is to take an old baby play gym, the ones that little babies lay under and can look up at and play with, and hang some cat toys from it. You can easily pick up the baby gyms at yard sales and thrift stores, or maybe you have one laying around from when your kids were little. You could even make one out of some pvc pipe. Some of the items already hanging can make good cat toys as well, but if they aren't interesting to your cat just take them off and add some feathers on strings and bottle caps hanging from cords. Use fairly short lengths so there's no chance your cat can get tangled and I bet your kitty will have fun.

Crafting a Cat Toy


Crafting a Cat Toy

Crafting a Cat Toy

Make a cat toy completely from scratch, no fleas involved
Knit a Mouse Cat Toy
If you know how to knit, make a cute little mouse from your leftover yarn.
Make a Rice-Filled Catnip Toy
This article tells how to craft a simple cat toy from a scrap of fabric, rice, and catnip.
How to Make a Stuffed Toy
Simple, easy sewn cat toy.
How to Make a Catnip Mouse
Many cats adore catnip. If yours is one of them make this little catnip mouse.
How to Turn a Sweater Vest Into a Frog
Got a sweater vest you can't stand? Don't throw it away! Turn it into a cute little toy for your kitties.
DIY Felted Cat Toy
This is one of those crafts that look so difficult, but is actually fairly easy. I think I'll make a few of these for my kitties.
Crochet a Mouse
This is a cute little mouse you can crochet in a snap.
Crochet a Pot Leaf Cat Toy
Does your cat seem addicted to catnip, almost like it's a drug? Make this cat toy that looks like a pot leaf and is catnip scented.
Sew a Mouse Cat Toy
Stitch up one of these mouse toys that are easily refillable with catnip.
Make a Catnip Fish
If you have an embroidery machine, make this cute this fish stuffed toy for your kitties.
Make a Easy Triangular Shaped Knit Cat Toy
Just a bit of leftover yarn and a few minutes of knitting creates a nice little cat toy.
DIY Candy Corn Knit Cat Toy
Knit a nice little cat toy that looks like a big piece of candy corn.
Make a Squiddly Octopus Cat Toy
This is an octopus looking cat toy that you can crochet fairly quickly. The dangly bits will be lots of fun for kitties to play with.
Crochet a Doorknob Hanging Cat Toy
This is a simple cat toy that uses leftover pieces of yarn to create a dangling toy to hang from a doorknob.
Sew a Menswear Mouse for Your Kitty
This craft uses old men's clothing to craft a cute little mouse cat toy.
Catnip Fish Toy
Sew small fish toys and stuff them with catnip for lots of kitty fun.
Homemade Fake Feather Cat Toy
This craft uses felt cut into the shapes of feathers for a great cat toy.
Make Your Own Catnip Rats
Sew some of these catnip filled rats for your cat and see them have lots of fun.
Make a 9" Mouse Toy for Your Cat
This is a large cat toy, perfect for kitty to wrestle with. "It's part of a collection of knitted and crocheted creatures called amigurumi, after the Japanese art of crocheting small animals."
Knitted Catnip Filled Heart Cat Toy
Knit this pretty heart cat toy and then fill with catnip for a cute gift on Valentine's Day or any time you want to show your cat your love.

How to Make Felted Cat Toys

How To Make Felted Cat Toys
by CyberSeams | video info
139 ratings | 50,098 views
curated content from YouTube

Another Free Cat Toy

Another Free Cat Toy

Find a plastic soda bottle cap, I like the big mouth 1 liter caps, but use whatever you have laying around. Using a drill on slow speed, or you can do it carefully with a sharp nail and a hammer, poke a hole through the soda bottle cap. Use thick string or a shoelace, and thread through the hole in the cap. Tie a knot on the other side that is big enough that the string won't get pulled back through. Hang the cap and string someplace where your cat can bat it around, just be careful that the string is short enough to not strangle the kitties. Your cats will have a lot of fun swatting the cap around on the string. They would probably be great to hang from a baby gym as suggested above.

Kitty Rag Dolls

Kitty Rag Dolls
Take a scrap of fabric and put a pinch of catnip in the middle. Carefully fold the fabric over the catnip so it will stay in there, and then tie a knot in the middle of the fabric holding the catnip permanently in place and forming a nice little knot for your kitties to easily grab hold of. Though it's super simple, cats love to bat these around the floor and sink their teeth into them. Just make sure they rag toys aren't too large, most cats like them to be on the smaller side. You can always trim some of the excess fabric away after you've tied the toy if needed.

Making a Cat Fishing Toy


Making a Cat Fishing Toy

Fishing for Cats

Fishing for cats doesn't just happen in the Mississippi. Make a few of these fishing pole toys and you'll be reeling in the big ones.
How to Make an Exerciser Toy for Your Cat
Got a fat cat that needs to lose some weight? Make this toy for him.
How to Make a Ribbon Wand Cat Toy
Cats love sticks with stuff on their ends. This version uses lengths of ribbon you don't need anymore.
How to Make a Fishing Pole Cat Toy
Cat's love fishing pole toys and they're a great way to get the cat's attention.

Cleopatra and Mendi are tired

Cleopatra and Mendi are tired

Cleopatra and Mendi are tired

Odd Toys for Cats


Odd Toys for Cats

Oddball Ideas

A category for the not so easy to categorize toy ideas
RC Car Mouse
Turn a mini radio controlled car into a mouse for your cats to chase.
How to Drive Your Cat Crazy With a Laser Pointer
Cats love laser pointers, but be careful using them and don't shine them in the cat's eyes.

Catnip

Does your cat go crazy over catnip? The chemical in catnip that sets your cat off does not work on every cat. Only cats with a receptive gene respond to the chemical and they all respond in different ways.

Get Your Catnip On

Get some catnip to add to your homemade cat toys, or just to drive your cat crazy. I like to store some of their toys in a box sprinkled with catnip. The cat toys absorb the smell and become much more interesting to the kitties.

Cat Toys Involving Food


Cat Toys Involving Food

Treats

Cats love food and some of the best toys include it
Cat's Foraging Toy
Similar to a kong for a dog, these little toys keep your cat interested by spilling food as the toy moves.
How to Make Your Cat Smarter - Kong as Cat Toy
Cats love toys that supply them with food.

Crawfish Trap

This is a bit of an odd toy for a cat. It is actually a crawfish or crayfish trap made out of a plastic 2 liter soda bottle, and I made it for an article I wrote. But while making the trap for the pictures in the article, my cats decided to give me some assistance. They kept sticking their paws inside and rolling it across the floor and taking off with it. When I finished the project the cats claimed it as their own. Since they liked it anyways, I sprinkled a bit of dry cat food inside, so it makes an interesting noise and has a bit of movement and they swat it all over the house. They really want to try and stick their heads inside, which don't fit, and it makes them even more excited since they don't understand why they can't get at the food, and they can see it right in front of them since the plastic is clear. Occasionally, a piece of dry kitty kibble will fall out and that makes them like it even more. Follow the link to see plans on building the crawfish trap: How to Make a Crawfish Trap out of a Plastic Bottle If purposefully making this for a cat just follow the directions, it works just fine, though you may want to consider making it using a 1 liter bottle instead of the normal 2 liter soda bottle. One of my cats seemed a little intimidated by the size. They're so cheap and easy though, you may want to just make two to see which your cat likes better.

Kitty in a Box

Kitty in a Box

Kitty in a Box

Vote for the Top Homemade Cat Toys

Vote for your cats' favorites and move the greatest toys up the list!
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Cat's Favorite Toy - A Box

Homemade Cat Toy Box Picture of LA in a box by me, AlishaV

General Ideas for Making Cat Toys


General Ideas for Making Cat Toys

General Ideas for Homemade Cat Toys

How to Choose Toys for Your Cat or Kitten
An article on choosing toys for your feline friends
How to Make Free or Cheap Cat Toys
Don't pay a lot for cat toys, check out these ideas.
How to Keep Your Cat or Kitten Entertained Without Stepping Foot into a Store
Fun ideas for kitty toys
How to Use Everyday Household Items as Cat Toys
More ideas for entertaining your cats with everyday household items.
How to Create Safe, Free, and Low-cost Cat Toys
Ideas for creating free and low-cost cat toys.
How to Entertain Your Cats
An article about cats and their toys
How to Make Various Cat Toys
Cats love to play and cat lovers can spend many hours lost in the pursuit of keeping kitty amused. Like most good things in life, you don't need to spend a fortune to ensure your cat's happiness and entertainment.

Cat Toys Everywhere :-)

Picture via Creative Commons from faeryboots

Toy Chest

To keep the cat's toys fresh and interesting, keep all but a couple put away in a toy chest. Every week or so switch the cats toys out with something else. The cats will be excited to have "new" toys and will go crazy over them again.

Making Cat Trees and Scratching Posts


Making Cat Trees and Scratching Posts

Cat Trees, Condos, and Scratching Posts

Cat trees, scratching posts, anything but the arm of the couch
Make a Cat Tree For Free
Using a simple dead tree, this guy has made a cat tree that most cats would love
How to Build a Cat Play House
Build a nice little cat play house from a solar tube and a few pieces of wood.
How to Use an Old Christmas Tree for Pets
Don't toss that old Christmas tree, make your cats happy with it.
How to Build a Tree Hammock for a Cat
Let your cat hang out on her own little hammock
Cardboard Scratch Pad
A super simple scratch pad you can make out of cardboard instead of buying those little cardboard scratch pads.
How to Build a $170 Kitty Condo for $50
A plan for a nicely balanced cat tree.
How to Build a Cat Condo
A general article about making cat trees
How to Build a Kitty Condo
This is a great project for the carpenter in the family.
Four Perch Cat Tree
This is an attractive cat tree, though is probably better for those who have some carpentry skills.
Kitty Tube
This kitty condo is basically a five foot tall tube with levels inside for kitties to hide.
Ladder Cat Tree
This cat tree uses as its base an extra step ladder. Since it uses the ladder as a frame you need almost no carpentry skills to put it together and wrapping the legs with rope can even be done by younger members of the family.
Build a Cat Window Seat
Make up this window seat for your kitties to get a good view out the window.

A Simple Cat Tree

A Simple Cat Tree

If you have a wildland area around you or a place that sells firewood, consider checking around and looking for a tree trunk to use for a cat tree. A good, solid piece of wood is a wonderful treat for your kitties. They love the smell of the outdoors and the feel of real wood to claw on, though be prepared, they can make quite a bit of a mess. Placing the tree piece inside a clear or black plastic trash bag and leaving it on your lawn in the sun for a few hours will kill anything living on it so you don't bring them inside your home.

Make More Cat Structures

Want to build cat trees, cat condos, scratching pads, cat houses, or cat outdoor pens? Check out my page on making your own cat structures.
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Playing Games with Your Cat


Playing Games with Your Cat

Pumpkin-Lovers

Kitties Playing with Pumpkins

One Halloween, after I carved the pumpkins, I realized here was yet another kitty toy. Hollowed out pumpkins make fun and different playthings for the kitties and my kitties definitely enjoyed a chance to play with them and one of them even enjoyed nibbling on them.

To turn the pumpkin into a fun toy for your cats, simply cut off the top and empty out the insides, just as you would do when carving for a jack-o'-lantern, then cut out various sized holes from the pumpkin. If your pumpkin is very large you can probably cut a big hole in one side for the cats to get in and out through. Next, let it sit overnight, so it can dry out a little because the pumpkin will seep a little after getting cut up. The next day, use a paper towel to dry out the inside thoroughly, and set it on the floor with the lid off so the kitties can play with it. You may need to tip it over sideways so they feel more comfortable playing in it, and tossing noisy toys inside may get their attention and coax them inside.

Once they realize how much fun the pumpkin is they'll have a ball swatting at each other through the holes and climbing in and out of the pumpkin. You can also place a toy inside the pumpkin and place the lid back on so your cat gets to try to capture the toy through the holes in the pumpkin.

This is a very short-lived toy, remember to toss it out before it starts going bad, but it can be a fun way to reuse your jack-o'-lanterns or those pumpkins on sale right after the holiday. Do not use the styrofoam pumpkins, the cats could accidentally ingest some and styrofoam is extremely bad for them.

Kittehs Playing in Pumpkin

Kittehs Playing with Pumpkin Picture of Butte, Ali, and Imp playing in a pumpkin by me, AlishaV

Scent

Scent

Try adding the cat's own scent to their new toy. Rub it under their neck on their scent glands and usually the cat will like it better. Or take the toy with you to work one day. It will get all sorts of new and interesting smells that will really intrigue kitty.

Poll

What is your cat's favorite type of cat toy?

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Do Other Stuff for Your Cat


Do Other Stuff for Your Cat

Other Cat Ideas

They may not be toys for your cats, but these great ideas will make it easier to reuse and recycle cat stuff to make new items
Ideas for Reusing Tidy Cat Litter Cannisters
What to do with all those kitty litter tubs? Reuse them for all sorts of ideas.
DIY Turn Cat Food Bags into Reusable Grocery Bags
This is one I always mean to do. I go through so many bags of cat, dog, and chicken food for my furry friends, and hate to throw away the handy bags they came in. They're super sturdy and it seems like such a waste. Making them into reusable grocery bags would be so handy.
How to Make a Cat Carrier
If you don't have a cat carrier, or in my case don't have enough of them, this quick and easy solution can get your cat to the vet without a problem.
How to Make a Cat Hammock
This page tells of a fairly simple and cute way to make a hammock for your kitty out of an old pillowcase. It is designed to go into the cages at the animal shelter, but I think there should be a way to make a wire frame so we can easily use them at home. An old metal rack would probably work.

Kitties Need Playtime

Kitties Need Playtime

Kitties Need Playtime

List of my Kitty Cat Articles

See some of my other articles on cats by checking out my kitty cat lensography (list of articles). I have articles on my cats, making cat structures, and even cute cat pictures. Click on the page linked below to go to the list of my cat articles.
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Make Homemade Toys for Everyone

Like this page? Check out my other pages on creating toys for your other pets :)
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If you have an idea for a cat toy that I should include or you just want to tell me what you and your cats thought of this page, drop me a line

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More Information About Me, AlishaV

Want to know more about me? Check out my biography or lensography for more information :-)
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