Introduction: Boondoggle Dog Tug

Make a super fun tug toy for your dog with fleece strips.

Step 1: Gather Your Materials

Just 2 items needed for this instructable:

  • Fleece fabric
  • Scissors

Step 2: Cut Fleece Strips

Cut 4 strips of fleece fabric, each about 3" wide. The fleece I used was 5' right off the bolt, so I just kept that length.

I used two different colors of fleece to make the tutorial easier to see in the pictures, but you can use any colors you'd like or even a single color.

Step 3: Stretch Strips

Pull and stretch each of the fleece strips lengthwise. This will cause them to curl up onto themselves into more of a "rope" shape. Stretch all 4 pieces.

Step 4: Knot End

Hold all of your fleece ropes together, and tie into a knot. Pull tightly - remember this is a rough and tumble dog tug so you don't want all of your hard work coming undone.

Step 5: Divide the Strips

Holding the knot inside your hand, point all of the long strips up, like a bouquet. Pull them out into an X shape, alternating colors. Color alternation isn't important if you've decided to use a single color only, just make sure the shape is in an X.

Step 6: First Loops - Make a Heart / Pretzel

Using two opposite strips, make a heart or pretzel shape. The first image shown here is the first loop, and the second image shows both loops in play to make the heart.

Make sure to keep one loop in front of the other - this is shown in the third image.

Step 7: Pull Opposites Through

Pull the alternate color strips through the loop on the opposite side.

For example, in image 1, take the grey strip (opposite color) closest to you, and move it over the loop closest to you, and into the loop in the back. Pull all the way through, away from you (image 2). Then, take the grey strip farthest from you, and pull it through the loop closest to you (image 3). Pull all the way through, toward you (image 4).

Step 8: Pull to Tighten

Moving the leftmost strips into your left hand, and the rightmost strips into your right hand, gently and evenly pull to create your first "grid". You'll see that it's almost like a checkerboard, with opposing colors.

Step 9: Create the Next Grid

Now that you have your grid, the knots get much easier!

For the second grid, take your opposite color - in this case grey - and make the two heart / pretzel loops again. This time, you will have the grid to guide you. Simply loop the strip over from where it's coming from, back over the top to touch its same color on the other side. You can see this really well in image 1. Image 2 shows the same for both loops.

Pull the opposite color through the loops, same as before, making sure to go over the loop closest to the strip origin, and into the loop farthest away.

Pull to set the grid.

Step 10: Repeat!

Continue repeating the last two steps, alternating starting loop colors. You'll see that the tug will take on a square shape.

Repeat until you're satisfied with the length of your tug.

Step 11: Finishing Touches

When you're satisfied with the length, tie a knot at the other end. Be sure to tie tightly!

Trim up the loose edges, leaving a bit of fringe to help keep the knot intact and for extra fun.

Step 12: Play!

Give the new tug toy to your dog, and go play!