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10 DIY Indestructible Dog Toys for Heavy Chewers You Can Make Today (with Pictures)

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By Nicole Cosgrove

dog playing with chew toys

Some dogs may be considered light chewers, but most dog lovers do not seem to own those animals. You probably have a graveyard of inadequate chew toys if you’ve owned your pet for several years. Most toys are inexpensive, but the costs can add up when your pup mutilates everything entering its mouth. Instead of buying your toys in bulk, you can save money by constructing some of these exceptional DIY projects for heavy chewers.

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The Top 10 DIY Indestructible Dog Toys for Heavy Chewers

1. Fake Ginger Dog Toy

Materials: 3 T-shirts
Tools: Scissors
Difficulty: Easy

Everyone has a few T-shirts that they’re embarrassed to wear away from home. This simple DIY project will not cost you a dime unless your closet does not contain unwanted garments. The author’s dogs played tug of war with this homemade toy and could not tear it to shreds like their other toys. Brightly colored shirts are best, so you can locate the toy easier when your pup plays outside. After laying the shirts on a solid surface, cut three strips from each shirt. Place the strips together and tie one end in a knot. After braiding the other strips together, you’re done. This is the simplest and quickest toy on our list to construct.


2. Wild Wolf Pack Dog Toy

Materials: 20 feet of paracord, tennis ball
Tools: Knife, scissors, lighter
Difficulty: Easy

This clever project from Wild Wolf Pack Dog uses paracord to create a heavy-duty dog toy. The author does not specify the paracord’s size, but we suggest using one that’s easy to braid, like the cord on the website’s video. The project should take less than 30 minutes to complete, but you must be careful when using a sharp knife to cut into the tennis ball. After feeding the cord through the tennis ball, you create a loop and braid the other pieces to form a handle. The website does not include step-by-step instructions, but the video is easy to follow and shows you the correct techniques. After finishing the braided handle, you’ll use a lighter to melt the frayed ends of the cord.


3. Happiest Camper Dog Toy

Materials: Denim fabric, cotton filling, scissors, thread
Tools: Pins, chalk, needle, sewing machine
Difficulty: Moderate

If your pet has been caught with a pair of jeans in its mouth, the dog will love this project from Happiest Camper. An old pair of jeans will make several of these toys, and if you have more than one canine in the house, it may be wise to construct several jean dog balls. The author includes a video and a free pattern you can print out, but if you do not have access to a sewing machine, the project will take a while to sew by hand. After sewing two pieces of denim together, you’ll stuff the ball with cotton and sew up the last seam.


4. Instructables Dog Toy

Materials: Hemp or jute rope, 2–4 sweet potatoes, sheet pan, aluminum foil
Tools: Sharp knife, round cookie cutter, vegetable peeler
Difficulty: Moderate

You’re unlikely to find another DIY toy as creative as this one by Instructables. Unlike the other toys on our list, this one will make your kitchen smell like you’re cooking a Thanksgiving dinner. After slicing the sweet potatoes into thick rings, you use a cookie cutter to remove the center to make room for the rope. The rings take 2 ½ hours or longer to bake and dry out, and you need to wait for them to cool completely before adding them to the rope. The author suggests braiding the jute if it’s too thin, but all you have to do is add the rings and secure the pieces by tying knots.


5. To Dog With Love Dog Toy

Materials: Nylon rope, tape, KONG toy or tennis ball
Tools: Scissors
Difficulty: Easy

This project from To Dog With Love will take you less than 15 minutes to complete, but if you have experience tying a monkey’s fist knot, you can finish it in 5 minutes. The knot is not difficult for beginners to learn, and the author includes each step of tying the knot with photos. You can use a tennis ball or KONG toy to tuck into the knot to form the center. After wrapping the rope around the ball several times, you form a braided handle with the remaining pieces. Using heavy-duty nylon rope will keep your dog from chewing down to the bouncy core.


6. Dalmatian DIY Dog Toy

Materials: Polar fleece
Tools: Scissors
Difficulty: Low

It’s challenging to find a dog that does not enjoy tug toys, and you can make this design from Dalmatian DIY in less than 30 minutes. You can buy three pieces of fleece to make the toy or cut up strips from an old fleece jacket or pullover. You use one piece that’s doubled over to form the center, and then you tie the other pieces and weave the strips over the fleece core. The weave pattern resembles the ones on paracord bracelets, and it may take you longer if you’re unaccustomed to tying a cobra knot. However, the author’s step-by-step guide should help you tie the knot without issues.


7. Wow Thumbs Up Dog Toy

Materials: Seamless knit gloves, needle, thread, black doll buttons, one large button, poly fiber stuffing
Tools: Scissors
Difficulty: Moderate

Dogs love to chew on fabric that has their owners’ scent on it, and they’re sure to love this design from Wow Thumbs Up. It uses two old knit gloves to create a durable stuffed dog for your pet. Although sewing is involved, you do not need a sewing machine to complete the project. After removing some of the fingers of the glove, you use one glove to form the body and the other one to shape the head. If you’re afraid your pet will swallow the buttons, you can leave them off and let your pup play with a faceless toy.


8. Heather Handmade Dog Toy

Materials: Denim jeans, plastic water bottle, thread, stuffing (optional)
Tools: Sewing machine, scissors
Difficulty: Moderate

This design from Heather Handmade uses items you probably have in your home. We examined several water bottle toys online, but this project impressed us because you can replace the bottle when it’s damaged. The author includes a PDF pattern on the website and detailed instructions for constructing the toy. The denim toy is made by cutting bone-shaped pieces from jeans, sewing them, and stuffing a water bottle in the middle. One side of the bone has an opening to replace the bottle. Thick denim is probably best if you have a heavy chewer.


9. Ammo the Dachshund Dog Toy

Materials: Tennis ball, two used shirts, ribbon, water bottle
Tools: Scissors
Difficulty: Easy

If you need two toys to keep your dogs entertained, you can try this project from Ammo the Dachshund. If you have old shirts, an empty water bottle, and a tennis ball lying around, you will not spend a penny on constructing these toys. One toy uses the tennis ball as the core, and the other uses a water bottle. You cut the remaining fabric into strips after tying the shirts over the objects. Using three pieces at a time, you braid the fabric into tentacle-like pieces. The author suggests making the braids as tight as possible to prevent canine teeth from ripping them open.


10. Hometalk Dog Toy

Materials: Denim, stuffing, dog squeakers, thread
Tools: Scissors, sewing machine
Difficulty: Moderate

Dogs that prefer a squeak to their toys will love this dog toy from Hometalk. It uses an old pair of jeans to create a denim bone. You can draw a bone pattern on the jeans or use the author’s design, and although the project was constructed with a sewing machine, you can sew it by hand. If you use the side of the jeans with a pocket, you can stuff a doggy treat in the opening to entice your pet. After sewing the two bone shapes, you add the stuffing and squeakers and close the seam. Squeak toys are not always popular with pet parents who work at home, but dogs seem to enjoy them.

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Final Thoughts

Whether you have a pet that chews or one that shreds, we’re confident that your dog will be busy trying to bite through these indestructible toys. Although some designs take longer to make than others, you can complete several projects in 2–3 hours. You can give some away to your friends or family or donate them to a rescue shelter. Of course, your dog will also expect you to leave a few at home.

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Featured Image Credit: mattycoulton, Pixabay

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