My dogs are about the sweetest things ever. EVER. But they can also be little jerks, especially when it comes to their toys. I can pretend like it’s all Carly the Boshih’s fault. I mean, she’s kind of got a baditude sometimes which is just a faster way of saying bad attitude. And that baditude that extends toward cows:)
She’s the kind of jerk who is so cute that you just LOVE HER so much even when she’s destroying a toy you just knew she’d love and spent 15 bucks on knowing it wasn’t your most brilliant purchase even at that very moment you handed it to the cashier to pay through the nose for it. You do that too, right? You totally buy dog toys because they’re SUPER cute with your fingers crossed that it will last long enough for at least a few Instagram pics, right?
Well I’m going to assume that you just agreed with me and I’ve got to tell you I’ve found a better way. Sure this isn’t even a kind of a cute toy, though I did work with the most fun colors I could possibly find. And in the end, we’re totally going with this business because it’s cheap and she can tear business up all she wants to and I can put them right back together again. And the dogs don’t seem to give a fig what they look like. They love ’em!
Want to see how I made them? SO EASY.
For this project you will need:
- Wool roving (a tennis ball shape will require 2 ounces)
- Panty hose or socks
- Few loads of laundry
So we’re going to turn wool roving into balls. You can also use these as dryer balls because it’s pretty much the same darn thing.
Remove your wool roving from packaging. p.s. cats love this stuff, too and you can actually make mini balls for them to play with. They perfectly catch in their upturned claws as they fling them around.
Sort of fluff the roving out a bit. Don’t get crazy and don’t put a whole lot of effort into it.
I’m using 2 ounces of roving per ball.
Take your major pieces and tie them into a knot and then knot again over your first until you don’t have enough length.
When you just have short tails start tucking them around into the knots to hold together. Also shove any little bits and pieces you might have.
Once you’ve got something that mostly looks like a ball shape shove it into the bottom of a pair of panty hose or socks, all the way down to the toe.
If you aren’t worried about reusing your hose (like if they’ve got a runner) tie a knot to keep the ball held together. You want the ball to be held pretty tightly if possible. If reusing your stockings, or even using some decent/thin socks, you can use zip ties or twist ties to keep the ball tight within the sock.
Keep tying knots of wool and add them to the sock or stocking as you go.
In the end you’ll have a distinctly caterpillar looking thing. Now you can also use the colors to try and make pretty designs but if you’re doing this because you’ve got a destructive chewer I really wouldn’t bother.
Throw the caterpillar in the wash a few times whenever you’re washing a hot load that can take the colors. FYI – my colors didn’t bleed at all but be warned that it is always a possibility. Dry them with the same load. It took me 3 loads to get balls that would easily hold shape. The more times you run them the more the wool will felt together making the balls smaller but more dense.
The balls can be chewed on and nothing much happens. Ollie is a big chewer and the ball just gets a bit misshapen and I toss it in the wash and all is well again.
But this one right here, Miss Carlita, is a terror which is why most of her pics with them are blurry. She is one of those toy killers that LOVES to pull the stuffing out of her plushies. If you have a dog like her you know EXACTLY what I’m talking about. You get this stringy clouds of fluff EVERYWHERE.
She will pull the wool loose and tear it apart but it takes her some time and in the few weeks we’ve been playing with these she hasn’t torn one up completely yet. Normally when it looks like half of the ball is fluff I toss it back into a few loads of wash in a sock and it goes back to a mostly round ball shape. FYI – they don’t have to be perfectly round for anybody to be happy… even wonky spheres will fly across the floor :
And that literally is all there is to it. I LOVE that I started making these. I got my wool roving on clearance for $0.30 an ounce making my 5 toys cost a little over $3 when you add tax. Not bad! And they have lasted WEEKS and that really ain’t bad!
Give puppy a little love with this handmade pet projects!