DIY Dog Enrichment Toy Ball

DIY Dog Enrichment Toy Ball

This enrichment toy is for dogs that like to shred or rip things apart. It mimics the dog’s instinct to defeather a bird, rip out fur, or tear apart prey all without the killing and eating of actual prey.

Ways to play:

Use this toy for fetch or as a teaser then let your dog prepare their catch, and it will automatically reward them by fulfilling their instincts mentioned earlier and by feeding them if you stuffed yours with edible treats  

Or just give them the ball! Your dog may make their own game or get right to work.

Caution about materials:

Make sure the materials you choose are safe for your dog and that you monitor them while playing with this toy.

  • Fleece is a good material because it doesn’t fray and break apart, but it is not digestible so watch your dog to ensure they don't eat the pieces!
  • Paper is also a good material because even though it may break or rip apart it is semi-digestible.
  • Cotton with unfinished edges is not a good material because it can start to fray and unravel and is not digestible.
Make sure the pieces are big enough so your dog doesn’t inhale the pieces and are easy to take away. Inspect after each use and fix or remove parts that aren’t safe anymore. Dry treats or kibble  is recommended as it won’t embed into the material  make sure the treats don’t stick to the non-edible pieces so your dog doesn’t accidentally eat something that may cause choking or require surgery to remove. You know your dog best!


Materials:

  • Material to make into strips: Fleece, paper, leather, fur, or ropes would work too
  • Holee Roller Ball
  • Scissors
  • Treats

Steps:

 

Description

Image

Cut your fleece into strips. My strips are about 20 inches long and 2 inches wide. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Uncut fleece material, cut strip of fleece, scissors, green holee roller, and black and white cat sit on a ledge
All done cutting! My fleece was about a yard long. Stack of cut fleece strips next to green holee roller

Fill the ball!

Option one: Weave through!

Weave fleece into one hole and out another hole with some material hanging out of each hole.

Fleece strip is weaved into one hole and out another hole of holee roller

This is what it looks like if only weave through each piece of fleece!

Miss really liked this one. The strips fell out pretty easily with just carrying it around. This is great for dogs who get frustrated easily or are just starting out with enrichment toys! You can place treats inside so that they fall out easily!

Black and white cat grabs a holee roller filled with fleece strips going into one hole and out another

Fill the ball!

Option two: put entire piece into the ball

Crumple, fold, or roll the fleece strip and put the entire strip into the holee roller. To reward your dog put a few pieces of food before your fold or roll up the strip!

Fleece strip is entirely inside a green holee roller, this one is just crumpled but it can be rolled or folded instead
This holee roller ball is only filled with crumbled up fleece strips. You can put more to make the ball tighter and harder to unpack or less to make the ball loose and easier to unpack. This is a  little hard for dogs to get their noses in to pull out the fleece. So do this if your dog is a bit more skilled or has mastered the weave through only version! Holee roller filled with crumbled fleece strips none coming out of the holes

Fill the ball!

Option three do a combination of crumbled pieces and weaved pieces!

This holee roller is filled with crumbled fleece. Now I am starting to weave some pieces through. This shows how I weaved one strip piece in one hole and out another.

A holee roller filled with fleece strips entirely inside the ball. One fleece strip is weaved into one hole and comes out the other

This is what it looks like finished with combination fill!

This holee roller is filled with crumbled fleece and the rest of the strips weaved through. This gives some easy to take out strips with some harder crumbled pieces in the middle. The filled ball helps keep the weaved pieces from falling out. 

You can use this as a medium level game for your dog!

Holee roller is filled with strips of crumbled fleece, and the rest of the fleece strips are weaved into one hole and out another to create a hybrid filled holee roller

 

 

Enjoy!

A golden retriever holds a green holee roller ball stuffed with fleece strips while looking at the camera

A happy dog playing with his new toy.

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