How to make a snuffle mat

Your dog will love this DIY puzzle feeder

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February 22, 2019

Long Minnesota winters can make outdoor play difficult. When your dog is stuck inside, snuffle mats can give them much-needed mental and physical stimulation. These entertaining puzzle feeder toys encourage your furry best friend to use their most natural training tool — their nose!

Snuffle mats are easy to make at home. This project can take up to 4 hours — a perfect excuse to fire up Netflix and get cozy on the couch! (Creating a snuffle mat is kind of like knitting. You can put it down and pick it back up whenever you have time.)

Please note: Dogs should be supervised at all times while using this toy and never left alone with it.

Supplies

  • A rubber anti-fatigue mat with holes in it, cut to the size of your choice (We purchased ours at Menards and cut it to 12”x12”).
  • Sharp scissors
  • One yard of fleece fabric (We recommend using at least two different colors.)

Instructions

  1. Cut the fleece into seven-inch strips. You'll need at least as many strips as there are holes in your mat.
  2. Choose one color of fleece strips.
  3. Double knot the strips along the entire edge of your mat. Loop the strips through each hole, filling in the inside of the mat.
  4. Choose the second color of fleece strips and flip the mat over.
  5. Double knot the strips in the opposite direction of your first color strips. We pushed all the fleece through the holes and then flipped the mat back over to double knot the loose ends. This saves time so that you’re not flipping the mat constantly.
  6. Hide your dog’s food or favorite treats in the snuffle mat and let them forage!

Looking for more opportunities to engage your active dog? Check out these brain games. Take it a step further with Specialty Workshops offered at Animal Humane Society’s training school.

For caring, compassionate advice and resources to address all your animal concerns.

Contact the Pet Helpline