Introduction: Drop Dead Wonderful Cat Toys
A bored cat is a destructive cat. Best to find something else for kitty to play with.
Here's a few toys to make for your cat that he/she will really enjoy. After spending a fortune for ones that get a 'humph' and ignored, I've a found a few that work.
Step 1: Materials:
You will need:
chenille stems or pipe cleaners
a new pencil with eraser
another person's finger for one second
a baby sock
dried or fresh catnip
ziplock sandwich bags
Step 2: Pipe Cleaner
Take a chenille stem or pipe cleaner from the bag.
Bend back the ends so kitty won't get stuck in the eye.
Wrap the stem around your finger like a spring. Place it on the floor before your cat and give it a thwack.
Continue to thwack it until he/she looses it or drives you crazy. (You can wind it around their tail and see how long before it gets pulled off). When the toys get too mangled throw them away and start a new one. Try several in different chenille thickness and metallic textures--kitty can never have too many....
Be prepared to find chewed wires under cabinets, beds, shelves and well as in corners etc.
Step 3: Foil Ball
This was something my Tonkinese taught me--it seems to be a weakness of the breed.
Cut a piece of foil and crumple it into a ball about the size of a marble. Thwack it before your felinus domesticus and watch him/her go. It works best on bare floor so that it rattles into corners as it gets chased. Be prepared to acquire a collection of these in strange places as well. Unwanted receipts are good for this, too.
On holidays it's fun to fill a bit of gift wrap or plastic egg with several of these and watch the chaos when kitty tries to chase all of them at once....
Step 4: Pom Pom
This is a no brainer--buy a bag of mini pom poms at the craft store and stick them in a ziplock bag with catnip and wait a few hours for the aroma to permeate. Save them for special occasions.
Step 5: Spit Soaked Catnip Sock
Find a baby sock (clean used ones are great). Fill the toe with dried or fresh catnip.
Tie a knot in the ankle then introduce Kitty to the new toy.
Once he/she is thoroughly plastered, set the sock somewhere to dry out. It is a good idea to make a couple rather than expect Kitty to share with friends.
Remember, if you don't talk to your kitten about catnip, who will?
Step 6: Homemade Pom Pom With Tail
Making a pom pom is fun and this is just one of their uses.
First, choose your yarn.
Cut a notch in the eraser of your pencil.
Wrap one length of yarn up the pencil, through the notch and back down again. Leave a tail of yarn so you have what is in the picture.
Pin one end of the yarn to the side of the pencil with your thumb and start winding it around the pencil as shown. DON'T LOSE TRACK OF THAT FIRST LENGTH OF YARN THAT WENT UP, THROUGH THE ERASER AND BACK DOWN THE PENCIL!
When you have a spool of wound yarn about 2 inches thick cut the yarn that you are winding.
Step 7: Continue Homemade Pom Pom
Here's the tricky part: carefully pull ONE SIDE of the eraser length of yarn so that it sticks out both sides of the pencil (see picture).
Slide the pencil out from inside the wound yarn (see picture).
Tie t he eraser length of yearn into a loop and pull it tight. The wound yarn will make a sort of 'C' around it. You are going to tie a knot in the eraser length of yarn as tight as you can get it. DON'T BREAK THE YARN!
Have another person put their finger on the knot to hold it tight as you tie it. Knot it again.
You should have something like this (see picture).
Step 8: Finish Homemade Pom Pom
Now carefully cut the loops in the 'C' so they spring out fluffy (see pic). DON'T CUT TOO DEEP OR YOU'LL CUT YOUR KNOT AND IT WILL ALL FALL APART!
Trim you fluff so it's fairly even. If you want it even fuzzier hold the pom pom over steam and it'll poof more.
For a cat toy, leave the eraser length of yarn and tie a bow from a piece of ribbon to it. Hold the end, swing it in circles and let go to let kitty chase it.
If he/she gets too enthusiastic and starts pulling out pieces of fluff, the toy will have a messy death.
Cats aren't the only critters that like to chase this....
Step 9: Other Favorites
If all else fails try a paper bag, laser pointer or the high tech Hexbug.
Nothing delights my kitty as much as messing up an Instructables background.
Your cat may be different--please share other toy ideas you have found!