A DIY Dog Toy Your Fur-Baby Will Flip For

Easy and inexpensive, fabric scraps are transformed into a simple fleece dog chew toy in this clever craft for your favorite Fido.
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Stop spending all your money on fancy toys for your dog, stat! Here’s a quick project that will take 10 minutes to make and costs less than a dollar. If you have a dog that loves to gnaw, then you’ll be happy to know that this DIY fleece dog toy holds up well to the most tenacious chewers.

Dog Chewing on Fleece Toy

Fleece Dog Toy Title Shot

Even the most tenacious chewers will get long lasting fun out of this fleece dog toy.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe


  • two scrap fleece pieces measuring 5-6 inches wide and 24 inches long
  • tennis ball
  • scissors
  • small piece of fleece for tying
Scrap Pieces of Fleece Fabric with Scissors and Tennis Ball

Dog Fleece Toy Supplies

Small pieces of scrap fleece can be used to make a simple dog toy.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

A Note on Fabric:

This is the perfect project to recycle old fleece blankets. You can use old t-shirts for this project too although fleece is stronger. Our dogs—well our Australian Cattle Dog in particular—can rip up t-shirt fabric in no time. Fleece holds up to dog teeth very well.

When cutting your fleece remnant (or any fabric), it’s important to understand fabric grain. Fabric grain refers to the way the fabric will hang and drape. For this project, we used the lengthwise grain (refers to the threads in the fabric which run the length of the fabric, parallel to the selvedge). This helps the fleece to stretch better. For a quick test, just grab your piece of fleece and give it a tug in one direction. If it doesn’t stretch that much, pull it in the other direction and give another tug. You should be able to note the difference immediately. You’ll want the stretchier direction of the fleece to be the length.

Cut and Lay Out the Fabric

Two Pieces of Fleece Laying Perpendicular with a Tennis Ball in the Middle

Lay the Tennis Ball in the Middle

The contrasting colors of the fabric will lend visual interest to the dog toy.

©Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

Cut one piece of the fabric 5" x 24".

Cut the other piece 6" x 24".

Lay the wider piece on the bottom and place the smaller piece on top, perpendicular to the bottom piece, then lay the tennis ball in the middle.

Tie and Braid

Tennis Ball Wrapped in Fleece Sraps

Tennis Ball Wrapped in Fleece for Dog Toy

The tennis ball is secured in the fleece with a scrap piece of fleece.

Photo by: Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

Gather the two pieces of fabric and bundle the tennis ball in the middle. Pull down on the fabric tails to make sure it’s snug and the fabric on the bottom (in this case the black) completely covers both the tennis ball and the contrasting fabric.

Take the smaller piece of fleece and wrap it multiple times around the base of the tennis ball and use several overhand knots to secure. Cut off the excess. Now it’s time to cut the four tails into nine separate pieces in order to braid it. Three of the tails you can simply cut down the middle until you hit the base. On the fourth tail, cut it into thirds. Now, using three of the tails, do a simple braid and secure the end with an overhand knot. Trim the ends evenly.

Dog Tested

Dog with Toy in Mouth

Dog with Fleece Toy in Mouth

The braided fleece with hold up to your dog's playing and tugging.

©Debbie Wolfe

Debbie Wolfe

Give your best furry friend his (or her) new toy. Is it for tugging or fetching? Why both! If perchance, your fur baby manages to destroy this new toy, at least it didn't cost too much. It was tested and approved by our pup Crash.

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