6 fun DIY kitten toys to get the creative juice flowing

6 fun DIY kitten toys
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Creating DIY kitten toys will save you money and it’ll also prove to be a heap of fun. You will be able to unleash your creativity, enjoy the satisfaction of seeing your kitty play with something you made, and discover more about what makes your pet tick.

In the same way that you could knock up some homemade alternatives to the best kitten food (although do so sparingly because manufacturers create complete, healthy meals that will ensure your young cat will flourish), DIY kitten toys can complement the best kitten toys or the best kitten teething toys extremely well.

You can concentrate on creating toys that offer mental stimulation or those that are great for physical stimulation. In fact, you could make a toy that does both. And as you do so, you’ll be helping to banish boredom, encourage new skills, and develop an ever closer bond. Knowing how to play with a kitten is life-affirming!

So let’s take a look at some suggestions that will tap into all of your kitten’s natural instincts, including the desire to stalk, bat, chase, and pounce. And let’s get creative.

1. DIY macaron cat toys

Macaron cat toys

(Image credit: clubcrafted.com)

These fun toys look like delicious macarons and you can make them in wonderfully bright colours too. They can contain a filling that will drive your cat wild. Just try and refrain from munching into them yourself!

What you’ll need:

  • Pastel felt 
  • Contrasting felt
  • Scissors
  • Thread
  • Hand stitching needle
  • Pillow stuffing
  • Catnip
  • Pencil/pen


  1. Use an object to outline four equal-sized circles on a piece of pastel-colored felt, about 3 inches wide. For example, I used the bottom of a wine bottle. Then cut each one out so that you do not see any pen marks.
  2. Cut one circle out of a contrasting piece of felt that is about 1/2-inch or so larger. Note, that it does not need to be perfect because it will be trimmed later. 
  3. Layer two pieces of pastel felt and thread a needle with a long piece of thread (doesn't necessarily need to be matching thread) and knot the end multiple times. 
  4. Poke through the top layer only, about 3/4-inch from the edge. Pull the thread through so that the knot catches in between the two layers.
  5. Make small stitches around the edges of the felt, keeping a 3/4-inch distance from the edge and securing the two layers together. Occasionally, pull tightly on the thread to gather it and keep it appearing ruffled as you go. Note, you do not need to pull hard and you do not want to pull hard enough to risk breaking the thread. 
  6. Keep stitching until you have about one inch left. You’ll notice that pulling the thread may make the piece appear misshapen, but ignore this and keep stitching so that the edges of the circles are together. When you have one inch left to stitch, add about one tablespoon of catnip (if desired), followed by stuffing. Then keep stitching and add more stuffing as needed to fill completely.
  7. Stitch until you reach the end, and lastly poke through only one layer and then thread the needle through an existing stitch, loop the thread and pull through to create a knot. Repeat at least twice to secure. You should now have a plush macaron shell. Repeat with the remaining two pieces of pastel felt so you have equal-sized plush shells. 
  8. Sandwich the piece of contrasting felt between the two shells. Thread the needle with a long piece of thread and double it up to make it stronger. Knot the two ends together. 
  9. Poke through only the top shell so that the knot is hidden on the underside. Stitch all layers together the same way you stitched the shells, pulling them all together tightly. If possible, try to retrace the stitches you made on the shells originally (as this will look best but is more time-consuming). 
  10. Stitch until you reach the end and pull all layers together tightly before pressing the needle through only one layer and knotting the thread with a double or triple knot the same way you did before. 
  11. Lastly, trim the excess 'filling' so that it fits close to the shells, taking precautions so that you don’t trim the ruffles. Then your macaron is all done! 

2. Knotty spider

Credit: YouTube: Purina Friskies

Made from felt and a plastic ring from a milk container, this cheap and cheerful lightweight toy is ideal for swatting, biting, and pouncing. It will keep your little bundle of fluff happily engrossed for hours.

What you’ll need:

  • Two sheets of felt
  • A large plastic ring from a milk container
  • Scissors


1. Cut the felt into slim strips maybe 2cm thick.

2. Wrap the felt around the ring and create a knot.

3. Keep tying them until you use all of the felt

3. Pom pom cat wand

DIY kitten toys - Pom pom cat wand

(Image credit: thinkmakeshareblog.com)

Cats love pom poms on sticks because, as you wave them around, the movement taps into their natural instinct to hunt. So create your own with a very small number of items that you may well already have around the home.

What you’ll need:

  • Wooden dowel rod
  • Flat leather cord
  • Scissors
  • Glue gun
  • Yarn
  • Baker’s twine
  • Embroidery thread (I chose metallic gold – cats like shiny things!)
  • Small strips of felt


  1. Drill a tiny hole in one end of the dowel rod, approximately 1/4-inch from the end.
  2. On the opposite end, place a small amount of glue and begin wrapping the flat leather cord. Add more glue along the rod as you wrap, enough to create a comfortably sized handle.
  3. This next step is as simple or as intricate as you choose to make it: create a variety of colorful braids or simply gather together a few straight pieces of whatever textiles you choose (yarn, twine, embroidery thread, woven cord) to add color and length.
  4. Knot each section at both ends, leaving tails long enough to tie to the next section. I channeled my inner 12-year-old and made some varying lengths of five-loop-square-braids with yarn and standard braids with sparkly baker’s twine and metallic embroidery thread.
  5. Create enough pom-poms (find an easy how-to at Make And Do Crew) to intersperse between each section of textile material.
  6. And create a tassel or two (find another easy how-to at Art Bar).
  7. Use baker’s twine or embroidery thread to tie and knot the pom-poms between sections of the braid.
  8. Repeat to attach the tassels, one to each end.
  9. Attach your string creation to the dowel rod by threading the baker’s twine through the drilled hole and tying a secure knot. Before tying that final knot, I topped it off with an extra pom-pom for good measure.
  10. If you want to take the embellishing a step further, wrap and straight-stitch a couple of felt tabs along the dowel rod, one near the handle and another at the end of the dowel rod.

4. Kitten puzzle toy

Credit: YouTube: Cat Lessons

It’s never too early to provide your kitten with toys that will stimulate both their bodies and their minds, and this puzzle toy is sure to give their brain a workout. We recommend filling the cavities with a few of the best kitten treats to make this toy even more exciting for your feline fur baby.

What you’ll need:

  • A box with a paper injection mold
  • A pencil
  • Box cutter


1. Remove the paper injection mold.

2. Draw holes with a pencil on the underside of the mold.

3. Cut the holes using the box cutter and smooth the edges.

4. Disassemble the box and draw a frame on the top.

5 Cut the frame and assemble the box.

6. Insert some toys, place the mold back in the box upside down and allow your cat to try and grab the toys from the holes.

5. Feather cork cat toys

DIY kitten toys - Feather cork toys

(Image credit: stayingclosetohome.com)

Feathers tap into a cat’s natural predator instinct – they associate feathers with birds and small animals. While that may sound a little gruesome, adding feathers to play at least focuses their attention on a toy. 

What you’ll need:

  • Corks
  • Feathers
  • Screwdriver
  • Hot Glue


  1. Drill a hole into your cork using a screwdriver. Be sure it is deep enough to fit the stems of the feathers.
  2. Using some hot glue, secure the feathers into the cork.
  3. And voila! You have a feather cork cat toy for your playful feline friend.

6. DIY whack-a-mole cardboard cat toy

Credit: YouTube: The Q

Guaranteed to provide you and your feline friend with hours of fun and laughter, this entertaining toy will help to train your kitten’s reaction times and concentration, making it both enjoyable and educational.

What you’ll need:

  • Cardboard
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Box cutter
  • Wire
  • Wire cutter
  • Tube
  • Some toys


This one is quite a complicated build and it’s far easier to watch the video than to follow a set of written instructions. 

Enjoyed exploring these DIY kitten toys? You can also try your hand making one of 8 DIY cat hammocks for felines who love to lounge up high or one of 5 DIY cat window boxes you can try at home.

Kathryn Williams
Freelance writer

Kathryn is a freelance writer who has been a member of the PetsRadar family since it launched in 2020. Highly experienced in her field, she's driven by a desire to provide pet parents with accurate, timely, and informative content that enables them to provide their fur friends with everything they need to thrive. Kathryn works closely with vets and trainers to ensure all articles offer the most up-to-date information across a range of pet-related fields, from insights into health and behavior issues to tips on products and training. When she’s not busy crafting the perfect sentence for her features, buying guides and news pieces, she can be found hanging out with her family (which includes one super sassy cat), drinking copious amounts of Jasmine tea and reading all the books.