5 DIY Toys for Teething Puppies

New dog parents don’t have to spend a lot of money to entertain a teething puppy. Instead, they can make these five DIY toys using materials lying around their home.

Jul 8, 2024byColt Dodd

diy toys for teething puppiesThere’s nothing worse than a teething puppy. Glasses go missing. Remote controls get chewed up. Even items on tall countertops aren’t safe. So, what’s the solution? Puppies need stimulation––and there are many do-it-yourself (DIY) toys. Here, one can read all about cheap and easy ways to keep their pup entertained––without endangering their health.

1. Water Bottle in a Sock 

water bottle in sock dog toy
Image credit: Pintrest

Every dog, from Italian Greyhounds to Great Danes, has a prey drive. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, and experienced dog owners can use this trait to their benefit, especially when it comes to teething puppies. The water bottle in a sock mimics the sound of prey rustling in the bushes, heightening the dog’s senses and relieving them of boredom.

For this item, one needs just two items: a sock and a water bottle. To make this toy:

  • Take a water bottle, preferably one that crinkles when squeezed
  • Remove the cap
  • Insert it into a wool sock
  • Tie off the sock’s end

Presto. Now, dog parents don’t have to worry about things going missing. For the time being, that is. One can expect to get anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours with this toy.

2. Frozen Peanut Butter in a Kong 

kong with peanut butter
Image credit: Mickey’s Pet Supplies

Yes, because one needs to purchase a Kong, this isn’t truly a do-it-yourself toy. Still, it’s a toy that dog owners have sworn by for years. Remember dogs’ prey drives? This plays on that characteristic. Stuffing peanut butter into a Kong plays on dogs’ instinct to forage and hunt for food.

For reference: Kongs are dog toys made of rubber. They generally have hollow insides or pockets where dog owners can put treats and other goodies. When making a furry friend’s favorite treat, one should:

  • Take a Kong
  • Wash out any residue from last time’s activity
  • Stuff the Kong with peanut butter
  • Place the Kong in the freezer for about three to four hours

Peanut butter, in moderation, is a good treat for dogs. Yet, the American Kennel Club (AKC) reports that, just like people, some dogs are allergic to peanut butter. So, one should understand their dog’s dietary restrictions before moving ahead with this toy.

It’s also worth noting that some peanut butter contains xylitol, an artificial sweetener. This is extremely toxic to dogs. One should check the peanut butter’s list of ingredients to make sure it’s safe.

3. A Frozen Whiskey Ball 

frozen water ball for dog
Image credit: Amazon

No, no––don’t give Fido an actual ball of whiskey! Instead, use the mold to create a frozen water ball. This toy is also a two-for-one deal in that:

  • The ice numbs the puppy’s gums. Teething hurts! Yet, the ice blocks out any pain or discomfort the puppy may feel. It’s also a good source of hydration.
  • Loosens any baby teeth. Puppies have razor-sharp teeth that start falling out once they turn six months old, according to VCA Animal Hospital. If the teeth don’t fall out naturally, this can cause problems, and a veterinarian may have to extract them manually.

Don’t have a whiskey ice ball mold? No problem: the ice that comes out of the ice maker also does the trick. A solid frozen water ball just lasts longer, and dogs enjoy the texture.

It’s important for dog owners to monitor their pets while they’re chewing an ice ball. Overzealous puppies may overexert themselves, causing bleeding and chipped adult teeth.

4. A Twisted Towel 

twist towel puppy toy
Image credit: Rover

As noted, dogs love foraging, which makes a twisted towel a favorite among many animal lovers. Dog parents just need two materials for this plaything: a towel and a treat. The size of the towel should reflect the size of the dog. Smaller dogs may get more stimulation out of a hand towel, while larger ones may enjoy beach towels.

For this activity:

  • Lay down the towel
  • Place a treat in the middle
  • Twist the towels’ ends, so it looks like a braid
  • Knot the two ends

Now, the puppy can chew on the towel while trying to find the treat. Like all other DIY toys on this list, it’s important to monitor the dog while they play with a twisted towel. If they puncture holes in the towel, they could accidentally swallow the fibers, and nobody wants an expensive vet bill.

5. Sweet Potato Chews 

sweet potato chews for dogs
Image credit: YouTube

Sweet potatoes offer a lot of nutrients to growing puppies. The AKC notes that they contain vitamin A, which is good for dogs’ muscles, nerves, skin, and eyes. Sweet potatoes also have a generous amount of fiber, promoting a dog’s digestive health.

For this DIY toy, one needs a rope and a sweet potato. They should opt for a rope that doesn’t come apart easily when chewed or wet. Remember: a dog should eat the fibers that come from nutritious meals, not from synthetic materials.

Now, to make this toy, one should:

  • Preheat the oven to 250 degrees
  • Wash the sweet potato’s skin
  • Cut the potato into slices about ½” thick
  • Bake the potato slices for five hours on each side
  • Cut a hole in the center of the slices
  • Loop the rope through the holes
  • Tie off the ends

These are just five DIY toys for teething puppies. For more information on teething puppies and how to navigate this challenging period, check out our article on interactive toys for small-breed dogs. Or, you could read this blog about five puzzle toys for bored dogs.

Colt Dodd
byColt Dodd

Colt Dodd is a sighthound enthusiast with three years of freelance writing experience. He has an Italian greyhound/Shetland sheepdog mix named Homer. In his spare time, he enjoys going to dog parks and writing fiction.