Cat and Feather: Homemade Cat Toy
Catnip Infused Feathers
Anyone who has had the pleasure of owning a cat... strike that... being owned by a cat knows that a cat can become bored all too easily. But what if you could introduce a toy into their repertoire that involves more than just one of their favorites at a time?
The trick behind this toy is infusing feathers with catnip, and making a customized cat dancer stick. It's a snap to make, and your cat will definitely thank you.
Your Homemade Cat Toy
You will need the following items for this project:
- A thin stick, pole, or dowel about 3 feet long
- A big handful or feathers, and the fluffier the better. I like marabou plumage for this project.
- Catnip in a container large enough to combine the catnip with the feathers
- String, yarn, or fishing line, about 3 to 4 feet long
How to Make a Feather on a Stick Cat Toy
- A couple of days before you make your cat toy, seal a handful of feathers with catnip in a container. Make sure it's tightly closed and can't be opened by paws. Don't use a plastic baggie for this step unless you hide the bag where it's unable to be found by fangs.
- When it's time to make the toy, lock your cat in another room. Otherwise, he will attempt to steal the feathers.
- Attach your string to the stick. If you have used a dowel, wrap the yarn or string around the top of the stick four or five times and secure tightly. If you have a stick alternative (in the video, I used an acrylic twirling stick from my local dollar store) it may already be equipped with fishing line and even a jump ring (not required). It a hole has been drilled into the stick already, thread your yarn through the hole.
- Time to attach the feathers! You can either tie the string around the feathers, or the feathers around the string (depending on the length of the feathers. I find it easier to tie the string around the feathers. Shake off any excess catnip first. Start about one and a half feet from from the string is attached to the stick and tie as many on as you like, spacing them however you find appealing. Attach the feathers tightly - you don't want them to come loose and lodge in your kitty's throat.
- When you get to the bottom, make sure there are enough feathers for a cat to really grab (in order words, don't tease them too much!). I covered the jump ring at the end of mine by tying the longest feathers around it and made a really fluffy puff at the bottom.
- Shake the toy several times to ensure no feathers are too loosely attached.
- Set your cat free, tickle its nose with the feathers, and watch her go to town!
Custom Cat Toy Poll
Have you ever made a custom cat toy?
Treat your cat like a king!
Ways to Customize Cat Toys
The reason I created this project was because I was tired of buying cat toys that didn't match my home -- what's the sense of ugly-patterned toys with colors only of interest to me?
- If you've used a wooden dowel or a plastic stick, spray paint it a color that works with your decor, or cut strips of fabric or ribbon and wrap them around the stick instead. Use a very thin piece of fabric for the dangling string.
- Eschew the stick entirely and use fabric strips themselves as toys... wiggle them to and fro and tickle the cat's tummy with them.
- Keep your cat safe and never use pointy objects in cat toys. Yarn is great because it has a slight stretch to it which cats find compelling.
- Match the color of its toys to the color of your cat. They may not care about the color, but it will look great in pictures.
- Spoil them and make one to match each room!