DIY Dog Rope Braid Chew Toy Tutorial

A few days ago we celebrated our dog Harley’s 2nd birthday! I know, she’s just a dog, but any excuse to have a party and I’m on board! I made her some homemade dog treats using this recipe and fashioned them into a cake. She loved them so much! I highly recommend them! Any time she sees me with one, she does all of her tricks without me asking her to do them. Silly girl.
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We got Harley from the Humane Society two days before Christmas and they had pretty much no background history of her. I know, red flag right there, but we fell in love with her and she bonded with us. They guessed her breed and they guessed her age was around 1.5. So we were able to decide what day we wanted her birthday to be and we chose to do my husband’s half birthday to make it more memorable! I think because it was around Christmas time when we got her there were more donations than usual so she came home with so much swag! Lots of toys, a blanket, and a few of these rope braid chew toys. I thought it was such a generous offering.
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A few months later I decided making these rope braids would be a nice service activity and a great way to recycle old t-shirts. My family helped me and we were able to donate 61 rope braids! I should’ve counted how many t-shirts we ended up using. This project is great for anyone who knows how to braid, so I guess that would maybe be in the range of kids aged 8 and up??? I’m not sure when kids learn how to braid, but as long as they know how, they can do this. So this makes for an awesome family activity or a religious group, or really any type of group wanting to do some service!
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*Note: In this tutorial I’m showing how these can be made by using a cotton button up shirt. I do not recommend using this! Stick to t-shirts. They don’t fray.
Tools you will need:
recycled t-shirts
cutting mat
rotary cutter
ruler
(or scissors)

1. Cut up strips from the t-shirt. I did my pieces 2 inches wide and all the way up the body part of the shirt. I didn’t bother with the sleeves, but you can if you want.

2. Piece 3 similar lengthed pieces together. It’s fun to mix and match different colors.

3. Tie a knot at the end.

4. Braid it.

Here’s the stash my family and I made. All old, unwanted t-shirts. Nothing fancy because the dogs are just going to rip it up anyways. It took me probably 2-3 hours to cut up all of the strips and just a half hour to an hour for them to braid them all.
So there you have it! An easy, environmentally friendly service activity. This would also be great for these summer days when it’s too hot to play outside, but you want your kids to be productive and learn about service! BONUS: After you braid them all you can make it an outing and go to your local dog shelter and look at all the cute dogs!
She has allergies which is why her eyes are all red. They’re actually getting better if you can believe it! Poor girl.

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