DIY Gift Ideas: Toys and Treats for Pets

Find ideas and how-to instructions for making low-cost gifts for dogs and cats.

When making your holiday shopping list, be sure to include your four-legged family members. But wait: your budget is tight and you can’t afford much? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with some homemade ideas you can put together with just a few bucks or using stuff you already have. 

CI-Brian-Flynn_End-Table-With-Dog-Bed_s4x3

CI-Brian-Flynn_End-Table-With-Dog-Bed_s4x3

©Brian Patrick Flynn

Brian Patrick Flynn

Even if you’re not skilled in the kitchen, you can whip up a tasty array of treats for your pets and your friends’ pets. Miss Zoe is showing off some Dream Puffs made simply from rice flour, peanut butter and yogurt. For that special holiday meal, prepare a platter of Marvelous Mutt Loaf. You can make it ahead and just leave it in the fridge until suppertime. Apple cinnamon PupCakes with sweet potato icing will make your kitchen smell heavenly, and they are full of protein to keep your pup healthy. And for the cats, open a can of tuna and make delectable Tuna Cookies

CI-Valerie_Sorensen-Catering_Dream-Puffs-pet-treats-with-Zoe_v

CI-Valerie_Sorensen-Catering_Dream-Puffs-pet-treats-with-Zoe_v

Photo by: Valerie Sorensen

Valerie Sorensen

5 Homemade Pet-Treat Recipes

See All Photos

Cut Out Dog Treat Shapes

Roll dough to an inch thickness and cut in desired shapes. Have fun with dog- inspired cookie cutters such as bones, hearts and hydrants. Tip: Be sure to make treats appropriate for the size of the dog. Larger dogs prefer large treats; small dogs will appreciate smaller sized treats.

CI-Canine-Cookie-Company_marvelous-muttloaf-pet-treat_v

CI-Valerie_Sorensen-Catering_Pupcakes-pet-treats_h

Photo By: Valerie Sorensen

Want your pets to look festive for the holidays? This elegant holly collar was crafted from small pieces of fleece and felt. You don’t need a sewing machine to make it; it can be hand-stitched. 

CI-Carla-Wiking_Christmas-dog-collar-pug_v

CI-Carla-Wiking_Christmas-dog-collar-pug_v

How to Make a Holly Collar

See All Photos

CI-Carla-Wiking_Christmas-dog-collars-pugs_h

CI-Carla-Wiking_Christmas-dog-collars-sew-seam-on-leaves_h

CI-Carla-Wiking_Christmas-dog-collars-sew-on-leaves_h

How about a new toy for the little rascals? You can make a stimulating cat toy from just a dowel, a few feathers and a strip of leather. Even if you’re not there to play with kitty, you can prop the stick up (maybe in a potted plant) so the string will dangle and he can whack at it. 

CI_Carla-Wiking-Cat-Toy-cat_playing_s4x3

CI_Carla-Wiking-Cat-Toy-cat_playing_s4x3

Make a Leather + Feather Cat Toy

See All Photos

CI_Carla-Wiking-Cat-Toy-cut_leather_s4x3

CI_Carla-Wiking-Cat-Toy-Material_s4x3

CI_Carla-Wiking-Cat-Toy-Add-Feathers_s4x3

Instead of spending money on expensive dogs toys that will end up lost in the yard, upcycle old t-shirts and turn them into a chewy pull toy

Photo by: ,

,

How about making a new pet bed? It doesn’t have to cost a lot. Gut a thrift-store end table or dresser, give it a coat of paint and add a cushion – you’ll get a new piece of furniture and your pet will get a new nap spot. 

CI-Brian-Flynn_Dresser-Pet-Bed-After-Close-Up_s4x3

CI-Brian-Flynn_Dresser-Pet-Bed-After-Close-Up_s4x3

©Brian Patrick Flynn

Brian Patrick Flynn

Turn Old Furniture Into New Pet Beds

See All Photos

Nightstand Bed

We turned an old flea-market dresser into a combination bedside table and pet bed. To make it, we cut out the bottom two drawers and relined them with beadboard, then coated the entire piece in a fun color. A fluffy cushion in the bottom makes it a welcoming retreat.

Take a look at the step-by-step instructions

©Brian Patrick Flynn

Stylish and Multifunctional

Octagon tables were all the rage 40 years ago; today you can find them secondhand for next to nothing. We updated this one by removing the door and giving the whole piece a fresh coat of paint. Then we made it pet friendly by lining the inside with fabric and adding an inviting cushion.

See how we made it.

©Brian Patrick Flynn

Modern End Table

This stylish end table with its peek-a-boo sides adds a perfect mod accent and serves a dual purpose as an end table and raised perch for lounging.

Find out how to make a table like this

©Brian Patrick Flynn

Drawer Turned Bed

This simple project requires very little power-tool skills. New furniture feet were screwed onto the base of an old dresser drawer, then the entire piece was painted. Wood letters were adhered to the front to identify the new owner.

Get the how-to instructions

Photo By: Susan Teare ©Susan Teare

Carrier/Pet Bed

This portable pet carrier is easy to make and doesn't cost a lot. The mesh top is removable so the basket can be used for an outing or at home as a pet bed.

Find out how to make this project

Photo By: Susan Teare ©Susan Teare

Office Chair

To make this comfy chair, the legs were cut off an old office chair. Furniture pads were added to the bottom to restabilize it. Then the entire chair was covered in a soft blanket and felt letters.

See how we did it

Photo By: Susan Teare ©Susan Teare

You don’t have to be a savvy woodworker to build a basic Snoopy-style doghouse.  We’ve got downloadable plans and videos to make it super easy. 

1430 f0

1430 f0

Even the novice DIYer can make this no-sew pet bed. All you need to know is how to tie a knot. Cut two pieces of flannel in a big circle then cut fringe all the way around. Knot the fringe together, add stuffing and you're done. 

Original-617Media_No-Sew-Dog-Bed-Beauty_h

Original-617Media_No-Sew-Dog-Bed-Beauty_h

Comfy No-Sew Dog Bed 04:32

 

For more ways to pamper your pet, check out these pet projects.

Keep Reading

Next Up

DIY Pet Silhouettes

Learn how easy it is to create beautiful embroidered personalized silhouettes of your pets.

Create a Cozy DIY Pet Bed

This snuggly pet bed is the perfect place for your furry friend to nap.

12 Homemade Gift Ideas From Made + Remade

Begin checking off that holiday list with a DIY gift that shows you care.

Made+Remade Holiday Gift Guide

Treat the DIY junkie in your life—or yourself—to an awesome maker gift this holiday.