Introduction: Interactive Cat Toy

Keep yourself and your cat busy with this fun and interactive cat toy made with household materials!

Step 1: Pick Your Box

The box that I used for this tutorial was 10x11x4.5 inches. However, any box with similar dimensions should work just fine!

Step 2: Add Holes

Flip the box over and trace three 2.5 inch diameter circles. Cut the circles out. I found that a knife worked best for cutting out the circles. If you use a knife, though, be very careful.

Step 3: Cover the Top

Flip your box over and center it on a piece of cardstock. Trace the circles onto the cardstock and cut them out (just like you did on the box).

Step 4: Secure the Edges

Crease the paper that hangs over the edges of the box and cut a small slit in the corners. Using hot glue, glue down all of the edges.

Step 5: Prepare the Tape

Cut about a 9in piece of electrical tape and cut small slits along both sides of the tape

Step 6: Cover Rough Edges

Wrap the piece of electrical tape around the perimeter of the hole and smooth down the tape on both sides. Repeat with the other two holes. This is to protect your kitty's paw from any rough edges.

Step 7: Create a Fulcrum

Using a knife or scissors, cut a small rectangle in the side of the box directly across one of the circle cut-outs. Repeat for the other two circles. The rectangle for the first cut out (the leftmost circle, if the circles are pointing away from you) was about 2 inches up from the bottom, the one for the middle circle was also about 2 inches up from the bottom, and the rectangle for the last circle was about three inches up. I put the rectangle for the last circle on the right side of the box.

Step 8: Make the Levers

The levers are made by using an assortment of bamboo skewers and wooden dowels. Each lever is made up of three skewers or dowels taped together. In order from left to right, the levers were 9.5 in, 13 in , and 6 in long.

Step 9: Cover Levers

Wrap a piece of tape around the three skewers/dowels that make up each lever. Make sure to keep the dowels flat while wrapping them.

Step 10: Create a Base for the Toy

Cut out a small piece of cardboard and glue it to one end of the lever to create a sturdy base for the cat toy.

Step 11: Glue on the Cat Toys

Secure the cat toys with hot glue to the cardboard base. Before gluing them on, make sure they fit through the circle cut-outs.

Step 12: Make Stoppers

Cut out 6 1.5x1 inch rectangles and make a slit in the center.

Step 13: Add the Levers

Slide one of the stoppers onto each lever. Flip the box over, and slide the levers through the corresponding rectangle cut-out.

Step 14: Adjust the Stoppers

Position the lever so that the toy can easily come in and out of the circle cut-out, and slide the stoppers into place, leaving them about a 1/4 in away from the walls of the box so that the lever can still move.

Step 15: Secure the Stoppers

Secure the stoppers on both sides of the box by wrapping a small piece of tape around the lever.

Step 16: Create the Pedals

Cut out two rectangles of cardboard (2x1.5 in) and sandwich the lever between them. Secure in place with tape.

Step 17: Decorate

If you want, add paper cut-outs, decorative tape, or stickers on the outside of the box. Now your cat can try it out! Because this toy has so many small parts, I wouldn't recommend leaving your pet unattended with it.

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