DIY: Dog Tug Toy

Make your own DIY dog toy with a tennis ball and an old t shirt!

Is your pup looking a little bored lately? Dog toys are a great way to keep your dog busy and entertained, but let’s face it, dogs aren’t the most gentle with their toys. And if you’re finding that you’re going through a lot of them, this DIY dog toy is for you!

This fun DIY dog toy is safe, sturdy, and best of all very easy to make. It requires just a few simple materials that you probably already have around the house, which makes it handy and of course budget friendly!

This DIY dog toy combines tug and fetch into a fun toy your pup can retrieve and wrestle with. The materials you need are an old t-shirt (that you don’t mind cutting up), a tennis ball, some scissors and about 10 minutes of your time, and you’ll have a new toy for your furry friend!

Making this tug dog toy for your dog is quick, easy and requires no sewing at all. And with just a couple of reused items from around the house, your dog will have hours of enjoyment and fun.

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How to Make a DIY Dog Tug Toy

DIY dog toy tutorial - make this easy no sew DIY tug toy for your dog from an old t-shirt and tennis ball!

Materials required for this dog tug toy tutorial:

DIY dog toy idea - Make this DIY tug toy for your dog with a few simple materials that you probably already have around the house!

Step-by-step instructions to make a DIY Dog Toy

1. The first step is to lay your t-shirt on a flat surface. Plan to make 2 cuts horizontally. You’ll need to make 2 strips that are about 5-6 inches wide and an additional thinner strip about 1.5-2 inches wide. (see photo above)

Once you cut your T-shirt, you’ll end up with 3 strips of material that are connected in a circle. Simply snip each of them at one of the ends to make them into long strips.

2. X marks the spot! Lay the 2 wide strips in the shape of an X on a flat surface and place the tennis ball in the middle.

3. Wrap the ball with the 2 strips of fabric. Then gather the strips at the bottom of the ball and tie with the skinny thin strip. Make sure to securely tie this otherwise your DIY dog toy will fall apart easily!

4. Take one of the 4 long strips and cut them into 3 even sections.

5. Braid the 3 long strands and tie securely at bottom to end the braid.

6 Repeat steps 4 and 5 for the other 3 remaining strips and you’ll have a brand new toy for your dog to play with!

DIY dog toys - make this easy no sew ball and tug toy from an old t-shirt and tennis ball!

Additional Tips and Tricks for this DIY:

  • I suggest using a men’s t-shirt for this DIY dog toy. You’ll find that it’s larger and provides more material for you.
  • Using a shirt with a pattern is always a little more fun!
  • Make sure you securely knot the ends of the braids and secure the material around the ball well to prevent it from falling apart.
  • Once this toy falls apart, simply throw any the t-shirt and you can remake it with another one of your old shirts!

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An easy DIY to make a tug toy for your dog.


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Share your thoughts...

  • WhiteBead
    August 18, 2014

    Love it! Just made one for my puppy 🙂

    • Eileen
      August 18, 2014

      Thanks! Hope your puppy had fun with it! 😀

  • Mia Myrabev
    December 3, 2014

    This is so cool, back home my dogs would to love fetch but also chasing people that seemed to brighten there day lol

  • Tracy @ Ascending Butterfly
    December 3, 2014

    Your furbaby is so cute! Great idea! 🙂

    Tracy @ Ascending Butterfly

  • Ellie
    December 3, 2014

    Omg your puppy is soooo cute!

  • Shanéy Vijendranath
    December 3, 2014

    Such a fabulous idea! I would of never thought of that.

  • Vicki W
    December 3, 2014

    This is such a cute idea! I am going to have to make one for my Annabelle today! I may even slip in some of my splenda packaging to give it that crinkle sound she seems to love. Thanks for sharing this!

  • Terri Ramsey Beavers
    December 3, 2014

    You are so creative. I always donate my tshirts to goodwill when I get tired of them but I’ll keep in mind my family members that have pets and make them a dog toy..

  • Echo (The Mad Mommy)
    December 3, 2014

    This is such a fantastic idea for a dog toy! I think I need to make one!

  • thejoyfulfoodie
    December 3, 2014

    Such an easy toy that will probably get lots of play! I might have to make one for my brother’s dog for Christmas.

  • CourtneyLynne Storms
    December 3, 2014

    Looks like an easy toy to make if you have doggies… I don’t have any doggies though lol….

  • Vidya Sudarsan
    December 3, 2014

    ha! that is so cute.. I bet even kitties will like it 🙂

  • Liz Mays
    December 3, 2014

    There are going to be some really happy furballs this year. These are a great way to entertain the pups!

  • Natalie H.
    December 3, 2014

    That’s pretty creative.. I don’t have any pets, however I would totally make something like that for the baby to throw around, lol.

  • Aisha Kristine Chong
    December 4, 2014

    I love how creative this can be – yeah – there is no need to throw old and unused shirts when they can be used for something else!

  • HilLesha O'Nan
    December 4, 2014

    I don’t have a dog (just a cat), but I think this is so adorable! I’ll have to keep this in mind when I do get one.

  • Tamika
    December 4, 2014

    Thanks for the reminder! I have a bag of old shirt’s that I normarlly start working on now for my kitty and doggie gifts.

  • RattlesandHeels
    December 4, 2014

    I want to get a dog for the kids and we would def do this! So cute and creative.

  • Donella Crigger
    December 4, 2014

    What a simple idea! Our German shepherd would love it. She loves tug-of-war. 🙂

  • Dawn
    December 4, 2014

    You’d be amazed at what all you can turn into a doggy toy! This is so creative and cool!

  • Erin Kennedy
    December 5, 2014

    I love this! So creative! Now I want a pup!

  • Mommy Pehpot
    December 10, 2014

    h cuteness overload! When we have a dog, will make one like this 🙂

  • Erin Childs
    December 21, 2017

    Love this idea – and your dog model looks just like our Toby! <3

  • Kelsey
    August 24, 2018

    What do you tie it with?

  • Hope
    May 24, 2020

    this is awesome my dog loves it thank you

    • Eileen
      May 25, 2020

      Fantastic! So happy your pup love it! 🙂

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DIY: Dog Tug Toy