Another Idea For Dog Toys

Ok...referring to my felted balls post. My basenji's got ahold of the larger felted balls I made, and man are they the best thing they've found to play with. Mostly when I spend a few bucks on a toy for them it'll last a maximum of 20 minutes before it's been degutted and ripped to shreds. But these felted balls are really holding up. My girl dog loves to flip them around with her paws and the boy dog thinks they are great to chew on. (Uh..i'd think it would be like chewing on aluminum foil...ewww...annoying.)

But if you wanna try making them, they are really super easy...but a bit messy. Take in consideration the size of the dog you're making these for. Don't make smaller ones for a big choking here please!!!

Get a bowl of extremely hot water, drop in a little wool wash. Then take a nice size wad of loose roving (Say about the size of an orange). You might find it helpful to slip on some thick rubber gloves, altho I usually just tough it out bare handed. Dip the roving in the hot water and start rolling it in the palms of your hands. This definately needs to be in a "wet" area. Sometimes I'l do them over the kitchen sink; or over another larger bowl if I'm in watching tv. Keep rolling the roving and you'll feel it start to shrink and tighten up. Add more layers to make the ball bigger by just wrapping the dry roving around the ball. Then dip it back in the hot water and then start rolling it again. I've been doing the center in a white wool and then the last layer I'll use a colored roving just for some fun. Once you get it to the right size (about the size of a tangerine or larger) and firmness and the last layer is firmly attached, take it to the sink and rinse and roll it under cold water. This will "shock" the felt and it will tighten up a bit more. Wring out as much of the water as you can and put it aside. Go ahead and make a few more while you got the mess going. Once you're all "felted" out...put your finished balls in an empty clothes dryer on high heat timed for about 60'll be loud but this will help dry the balls out faster. They'll still take a day or two to finish drying, but the dryer method gives them a good head start.

You can make designs with the colored rovings, or leave them plain...let me know what you think.


QueerJoe's picture

Nice balls!

Love the idea of using nice colored roving only on the outer layer. I was thinking that it would be great to buy some cheap cat toys as the core of the those little plastic balls with bells in them.

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WMarksII's picture

That's an awesome idea. Although I think what drives my beasts to shred is the squeaker in it, a bell would be very cool...if not for them, for me as a play toy at work.

Aaronknits's picture

Dru, your fuzzy balls are the best!! They're so versatile.

I know exactly what you mean about store bought toys lasting only 20 minutes max. My pharaoh hound and my youngest IG don't seem to be able to make a toy last much longer than 10 minutes.

I get fabric scraps from folks on Freecycle whenever possible, and I buy some cheap furry fabric every once in a while at Jo Ann's when it's super super cheap and use it all to sew small cheap dog toys.

I used to buy the bags of squeakies ( if anyone is interested in a source and they may work inside of a fuzzy ball) but my dogs aren't as interested in making a toy squeak as they are in gutting it.

Hi. I noticed a knitting machine in the back of your photo. Would it be sacrilege to talk about machine knitting on this site?I have been using one for years.At the moment I'm hand knitting as I need somthing portable.

BuduR's picture

knitting is knitting! I have never knit on a machine and have been really curious as to how they work. I have considered buying one, but it's not a cheap investment and if I don't like it..... if if if. you see where this is all going........

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