5 DIY holiday gift ideas for animal lovers

Want to add a personal touch to your gift giving this holiday season? Put your craftiness to the test with these five easy and affordable DIY projects!

Bark Bites

Submitted by Suzi Beber

Ingredients

2 cups almond flour

2 cups carob, raw or roasted, or a combination

1 cup freeze dried cranberries, crushed (a rolling pin works perfectly; finely chopped fresh cranberries or unsulphured dried cranberries can also be used, and freeze dried blueberries can add some “zip” too!)

1½ cups coconut oil

4 teaspoons pure vanilla, no alcohol

Extra special taste sensation: for dogs, add a tablespoon of finely ground liver powder; for cats, add a heaping teaspoon of dried catnip

Instructions

  • Choose organic ingredients whenever possible.
  • Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  • Heat coconut oil until it is liquid. This can be done in the microwave or in a small saucepan on the stove. It only takes one minute.
  • Add all other ingredients and combine with a spatula.
  • Press mixture into a parchment-covered cookie sheet.
  • Place in freezer for three to four hours, remove from freezer, cut with a sharp knife that has been heated in hot water or simply break into uneven pieces.
  • For gift giving, line a holiday-themed container with parchment paper, add the treats, and keep refrigerated until it’s time to share. You can also include a recipe card to make it a gift that keeps on giving!

DIY winter wonderland room and linen spray

Who doesn’t want their home to smell fresh and clean? Follow the recipe below to create a chemical-free room and linen spray that will help cut through animal odors, naturally!

What you’ll need

  • 16 oz glass bottle
  • 8 oz distilled water
  • 2 oz organic witch hazel (or substitute 2 tsp Epsom salts)
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda
  • 15 drops frankincense essential oil*
  • 15 drops orange essential oil*
  • 15 drops peppermint essential oil*

*Be sure to use pure, unadulterated, high quality essential oils.

Instructions

Using a funnel, combine all ingredients in your glass bottle. Swirl gently to combine. Tie a bow around the bottle to give as a gift!

DIY simple no-sew denim dog toy

This toy can be made using an old pair of jeans, and it’s incredibly easy to do! It’s the perfect eco-friendly gift for your own pup, or any other dog parent in your life – and it’s extremely durable for even the toughest of chewers!

What you’ll need

  • 9 25” strips of denim
  • A rubber band

Instructions

a) Fasten your denim strips together on one end using the elastic. Leave 5” of fabric above the elastic.

b) Shut the fastened end of the denim strips in a door or have a friend hold it for you.

c) Divide the strips into three sets of three.

d) Start braiding! Cross the set of strips on the far left over the middle pair.

e) Do the same with the right strips. Keep the braid as tight as possible.

f) Continue until you have 5” of unbraided fabric left.

g) Fasten the remaining unbraided fabric by separating one set of strips. Tie two of them in a knot, then wrap them around the other two sets of strips and tie them in another knot.

h) Remove the rubber band and repeat the above step on the opposite end… and voila!

DIY fleece pet blanket

This cozy blanket will be appreciated by any dog, cat or human in your life. You can also celebrate the season of giving by donating it to a local animal shelter!

What you’ll need

  • 2 6.5’ sheets of fleece
  • Ruler
  • Scissors

Instructions

a) Lay the sheets of fleece on top of each other on the floor or a large table, with the right sides facing out. Make sure the edges match up, and trim off any extra fabric.

b) Using your ruler, measure and cut out a 3” to 6” square at each corner of the sheets. The size you choose will be the size of your blanket’s fringe.

c) Repeat this for each corner, making sure to cut through both layers of fleece.

d) Cut strips of fabric along the edges of your blanket – this is your fringe. Each strip should be the same length as your corner squares, and can be anywhere from 1” to 2” wide.

e) Tie the fringe strips together using a snug square knot (like the knot you use to tie shoelaces) on each one. Try not to crumple the fabric by pulling the knots too tight.

f) Resist the urge to keep the completed blanket for yourself!

DIY dog treat coat rack

Why buy a regular coat rack when you can make one that includes a built-in dog treat jar? Get crafty and make this for your own home this holiday season, or gift it to a friend or family member!

What you’ll need

  • Wood plank (any size)
  • Sandpaper
  • Stain or paint
  • Paint brush
  • Mason jar
  • Large hose clamp
  • 2 to 4 coat hooks (depending on the size of your plank)
  • Screws (make sure they aren’t longer than the depth of your plank)
  • Screwdriver or drill
  • Measuring tape

Instructions

a) Sand any rough edges off your wood plank.

b) Stain or paint the wood and allow to dry for 12 hours.

c) Using a measuring tape, mark where you’d like your hooks and Mason jar to go. There should be equal space between each.

d) Secure your hose clamp using a screw and your drill or screwdriver. Tighten the hose clamp around the jar.

e) Attach the hooks using the same method as above.

f) To give your rack as a gift, tie a colorful ribbon around the lid of the Mason jar and fill it with some homemade Bark Bites!