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16 amazing cat toys you can make for free

I am aware that many of these are silly ideas…but believe me, cats love these toys. And if yours doesn't, well, it was free. Think of all the expensive toys your cat has hated.

disclaimer: although the toys below are safe for most cats, there are always a few that seem to find a way to get injured by the most harmless of toys. Please keep an eye on your cat as he plays with these toys, especially if he is a chewer.

1:scratching wall of happiness
Nail a piece of approximately 18" x 30" remnant carpet (preferably low-pile, nubby carpet) to the wall lengthwise so that the top of it is a foot higher than your cat can reach. Rub catnip on carpet. Call kitty. Kitty may climb up wall in excitement.

2: a strip of bent-up paper
cut a piece of paper to be 1/8 inch wide, 6 inches long. Bend the paper in a few places so it does not lay flat on the ground. Put it next to the cat.

3:a bunch of bent-up papers
Repeat the steps to make the toy above 15 or so times. (Or use a paper shredding machine, if you have one.) Use one of the strips to tie the rest in a bunch. Fluff the bunch out a bit. Give to cat.

4:a crumpled-up ball of paper
Crumble half a sheet of paper into a ball that can be easily carried in your kitty's mouth. Roll towards kitty. (My cat Dinky loves this toy.)

5:amazing milk ring
Obtain milk ring (it should be a complete loop, not a broken one). Toss on floor. (This is one of Agatha's favorites.)

Obtain decent-sized, clean feather. Wash in hot water with antibacterial soap, to be extra safe. Stand by your kitty and wiggle feather in air like it is an entire bird.

7:magical flying straw
Unwrap a soda straw. Get cat's attention. Lay straw on palm of one hand and between the index and middle fingers. Use your other hand to flick the end of the straw so that it travels a fair distance in the air. (This is Mr. Shat's favorite toy.)

8:sock of bliss
Take an old sock (preferably a children's sock or something quite small). Put a tablespoon of dry catnip inside it. Tie sock. Put next to cat.

9:square of bliss
Cut two pieces of fabric 3" by 3." Sew them together, but leave a third side open. Put a tablespoon of dry catnip inside it. Sew remaining side up. Put next to cat. (Molly loves this toy.)

10:treat bottle
A 1-liter or 20 oz. soda bottle with small, treat-sized holes pierced through it makes a good treat toy.  You place the kitty treat in the bottle and let your cat get it out.  When she does, she has the reward of the treat.

11:treat roll
Obtain empty paper towel roll. Roll up one of the tube. Place a small handful of cat treats or dry cat food into roll. Roll other end of tube closed. Use scissors to create a few starter holes in the roll. Your kitty will probably be able to expand these and get at the treats. If he seems frustrated, you may need to enlarge the holes.

12:wonder bag
Cut handles off of paper bag so your cat doesn't hang himself. Open bag and lay on floor, table, or wherever else you like. Soon cat will show up and jump into bag.

13:wonder box
Place open box on floor, table, or wherever else you like. Soon cat will show up and climb into box.

For the more ambitious: close up the box, but add a small hole for the cat to enter. Also you can add smaller, paw-sized holes and put toys or treats in the box. Cats love to stick their paws in mysterious places to explore (it's that "curiosity killed the cat" concept).

For the super-ambitious: Connect several boxes together with various holes throughout (somewhat like a cat-sized hamster trail). Warning: Make the holes either big enough for the cat to get through or very small (paw-sized), or else the cat may get stuck in one of the holes. This is funny but inconvenient.
For inspiration, please check out the most wondrous of Wonder Boxes here!

14:magic carpet ride
Hold one end of old towel or small old carpet. Let the other end drag on the ground, enough material that your cat will sit on. Drag this around the house a bit. Soon, your cat will jump on and take a ride.

15:enimatic jug
Take a clean 1 gallon milk (or water) jug.  Cut several holes in it large enough for a paw to fit, but not a head. Insert a ping pong ball (or small practice golf ball).  Give to the cats.  If you make the holes slightly smaller than the ball, you can push the ball into the jug and won't have to keep placing it back in the jug. You can do the same thing with a clean 2-liter soda bottle.

16:film container cap
Remove cap off of film container and fling or roll it across the room.