20 fun DIY cat toys that kitties can’t resist


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Sep 18, 2023

20 fun DIY cat toys that kitties can’t resist

You have to respect an animal that can make a toy out of an empty cardboard box.

You have to respect an animal that can make a toy out of an empty cardboard box. Or a bag. Or a simple ball of yarn. Whether catnip toys, clever cat treat toys, or DIY cat toys with yarn, there are plenty of ways to transform common household items into cat magic.. For those creative moments, we’ve gathered 20 DIY cat toys that will definitely entertain your cat—not to mention save you a little money and perhaps find a new purpose for something you may have otherwise thrown away.

Give your kitty one of these homemade cat toys, and we promise they’ll be wondering what other extraordinary things two-legged creatures like you are capable of!

One of the easiest DIY cat toys out there, a plain old toilet roll can be hours of fun for a kitty, as demonstrated by Papaya Wonton. Or if you’re feeling crafty, jazz up a toilet roll by stuffing some treats inside and folding the sides, as suggested by Staying Close to Home.

You’ll need loose craft feathers, braided mesh tubes, needle and thread, elastic and a small plastic ring to make this DIY feather toy for cats from Dream a Little Bigger, which, like its name implies, will fully fascinate your feline friend until their heart's content (because: cats). First, sew the braided mesh tubes together into a bunch, then sew feathers to the ends of each of the tubes. Bind all your mesh tubes together with some elastic, leaving a long piece for it to hang from. Tie a ring at the end.

It's simple, really: Take two things cats love—toilet rolls and boxes—and fashion them into a homemade cat toy. But this is not just any cat toy. Add pipe-cleaners, a cardboard egg carton and a few balls, and you have what looks like a kitty pinball machine. Arnica Jolene, whose pawrents came up with the idea, is quite the pinball wizard—with whiskers.

Not only is this DIY cat scratch door hanger from Pets Plus Us fairly simple to make, it's the purr-fect toy for your cat. Hot glue some sisal rope—note: few cats can resist sisal rope—around a wooden board, detail it with your favourite colour of string and pom poms, hang it on a door knob and voila! Kitty entertainment for days!

Bring the outdoors in with this DIY cat scratch post that would make Neil Buchanan proud. As this YouTube video shows, use clear tape to secure your rolled cardboard (three and a half inches thick) into a circle-like stump. Glue cork on the outside to look like bark or, as Sussie and Kich did, use real bark, wood glue and tie around rope. The result is a rustic-looking stump that kitty will totally go nuts for—especially if you add catnip.

Styled like a skyscraper made for kitties, this "catscraper" from Shelterness is fashioned from stacked cardboard that your cat will definitely want to sharpen those claws on. The key to keeping this DIY cat toy vertical is constructing a super-sturdy base with an equally sturdy dowel positioned in the centre. Stack the carefully cut cardboard pieces (one on top of the other) until you get the skyscraper shape you desire. The modus operandi here: The taller the better!

Take it from Pudge, the Insta-famous cat in this how-to video, this is the toy your feline wants right meow. To make this DIY feather toy for cats you’ll need leather and cord thread, a wire cutter, pliers, a dowel, superglue, a bell and felt (for the faux feathers). Pudge may or may not have fallen asleep while making this toy, but that is in no way a reflection of how fun it is to play with.

Cut holes in the top of a disposable food container with a utility knife to make this cat treat toy that will challenge kitty. (The folks at The Glam Cat burnt the edges of the holes with a lighter to make it softer on kitty's paws.) Fill the container with items your cat will totally flip out over, such as catnip toys, balls or treats. Close the container and let your kitty figure out the rest.

Dig through your closet for a medium-sized T-shirt, which is the key ingredient for this adorable little kitty abode, courtesy of Jenna How. A piece of cardboard, two wire hangers and tape help you achieve a cool tent frame. Safety pins help you secure the shirt to the frame. Put a cosy blanket inside and your cat is ready for some shuteye.

One reason you won't be making this flying feather and pompom cat toy from Joy the Baker while your kitty is around: This stuffed cat toy will make kitty go wild. So, it's best to get to work while kitty is napping. Start by cutting colourful felt into fun shapes, stuff each with catnip and sew both sides of the shapes together. Attach pieces of string to a rod and tie the shapes you made to the end of each. For added fun, put pompoms and feathers on each catnip shape with hot glue.

Got a cardboard box and a pair of scissors? Then you’ve got everything you need to make one of the cheapest, most engaging DIY kitten toys around. As Mochi and Levi shows on Instagram, this cardboard hide-and-seek toy will have your kitty entertained for a good chunk of time.

Give your Garfield all the junk food they dream about! Cut some coloured felt into donut, burger and hot dog shapes, stuff with catnip and then sew with coloured embroidery thread. All the details for making these felt junk food stuffed cat toys are over at A Beautiful Mess.

These DIY pompoms from Ventuno Art are perfect for knitters with kitties (who constantly interrupt their knitting). Wrap yarn around a fork (like spaghetti) approximately 60 times, then tie some yarn down the middle. Carefully slip it off and trim the edges on both sides. Voila, ready for a game of catch.

Sew4Home has a downloadable pattern for this one-seam catnip toy. You just need home-decor fabric, matching sew-all thread, yarn, catnip and a chopstick to achieve the right shape. Another very important tool that's needed: A funnel to help you get the catnip inside!

This homemade cat toy is a must for any cat that's licked its lips while gazing at the fish bowl. Making the fish might be the most complicated part of this wand-like fishing rod toy by Lia Griffith, but the adorable result is well worth the effort of gluing on gills. Cotton clothesline attaches the fish to the dowel, which they recommend painting blue for an aquatic aesthetic.

Why make your cat an ordinary scratching post when you can make them a pirate ship scratching post a la Jenny Rae Gibson?! Not only will your kitty be entertained for hours, you’ll have a cute show piece for your home to boot!

If you can tie your shoes, you can make these easy DIY T-shirt cat toys! Cut up old tees, says Muslin and Merlot, into 3-inch-by-10-inch rectangles (the more colourful the better). Simply tie them into knots—like we said: easy-peasy!

If we had you at "no sew," we appreciate your desire to keep things easy. These pompom toys from Sensibly Sara are made with scraps of fleece (at least 2 inches wide), inexpensive cotton string and a pair of scissors. Add catnip to make this a real cat treat toy.

Want to keep your cat entertained and put an end to couch/general furniture-scratching? Kate Riley from Centsational Style has the solution—a simple sisal rope cat scratcher. This easy to make DIY cat scratch is fun to look at and will keep your arm chairs intact.

Drinking and crafting aren't generally recommended, but using wine corks to make DIY kitten toys totally is! Per The Link Site instructions, make a hole in the cork with a nail and use a pair of pliers to pull it out again. Use a darning needle to pull yarn through the hole. Tie tassels at the bottom and make sure the yarn is at least 30 centimetres long so you have ample dangling distance (because: claws!)

2. Feather fascinator 3. Ultimate kitty puzzle 4. DIY cat scratch door hanger 5. Tree stump scratch ing pad 6. Cardboard catscraper 9. DIY cat tent 10. Dancing c at toy 11. Cardboard hide-and-seek toy 12. Junk food cat toys 13. DIY fork pompoms 14. Cattail catnip toy 15. Cat fishing rod 16. Pirate ship DIY cat scratch post 17. T-shirt DIY cat toys 18. No-sew pompoms 20. Wine cork cat toy