My dogs are always tearing through their toys, so I wanted to see if I could make some for them after seeing the free pattern on the Lion Brand Site.
I made a dog toy following these instructions and thought I could alter it and make one better suited for my dogs. I have several dachshunds that like to play tug of war. The yarn quickly shredded and my dogs had trouble gripping the loose yarn and knot on the end with their small mouths.
So I added loops on both ends, switched out some of the yarn for more sturdier twine, and made it a bit thinner.
This will take about a half an hour to an hour to finish.
Step 1: Materials and Tools
Lion Brand Wool-Ease yarn (any color you like)
Measuring tape or Yard stick
All of this can be bought at most craft stores.
Step 2: Cutting the Yarn
First you cut the yarn and twine into 50 inch segments. You'll need 10 yarn segments and 24 twine segments. I cut one segment using the measuring tape, and then just used that as the basis for all the others.
Tip: When laying out the yarn it will stretch so be careful when cutting it because it will snap back and be shorter than you want. Also, longer is better.
Separate the segments into a pile of ten yarn and two piles and twelve twine and tie them together at one end with an over hand knot.
Changing the number of yarn and twine segments will change the thickness of the dog toy. I chose 10 yarn and 24 twine because it came out to a good size for their small mouths. You can also augment the length of the segments if you want a longer or shorter toy.
Step 3: Braid the Yarn and Twine
Braid the piles together. Braiding consists of taking the right section and taking over the current center section and making it the new one in the center. Then taking the left section and moving it over current center section and making it the new center. Repeat until done.
If you don't know how to braid you can ask someone to demonstrate or look at this website.
I preferred a tight braid to a loose one. It made the dog toy look more sturdy and stayed together better.
Tip: if you are pretty good at braiding then you can try to keep the sections twisted while braiding which creates a tighter end product. This will require keeping tight hold of the sections the entire time.
Leave a couple inches un-braided at the end to tie another overhand knot.
Step 4: Tying the Loops
I do not know the name of this knot, but pictures of the steps are uploaded below. You take about 8 inches, loop the end around the braid, and poke it through the "top" of the loop.
Do this to both sides.
Before you tighten the knot, you can adjust the size of the loops to make them even. Pull the knots as tight as you can.
Step 5: Finalized Dog Toy
Make sure all the knots are tied tight. I left the extra yarn as tassels, but they can be cut off. Just not too short or the knots might come apart.
Now you can go see if your dog enjoys what you made for her/him.