If your cat is anything like mine, they love those little mice that rattle and cost abot $1 each. If they're really like my Daphne's, then they'll disappear into some corner or under a bit of furniture just about as soon as you bring them home.
Well, I got so tired of having to bring these home that I decided to make my own out of scraps I had lying around. I was inspired by this post on Design Sponge for an even simpler toy, but I don't think my cat would go for it...
Materials and Tools:
-Scrap Fabric (knit or stretch fabric works best)
-PVC pipe (3/4" diameter)
-thick paper or cardstock
-rice, dried beans, beads or anything else that will rattle
-pipe cutter (or hacksaw)
I used jersey knit fabric left over from an attempt to make t-shirt yarn. I wasn't happy with the way the yarn knit up - I thought it was much too stiff once knit. So I had long strips of yarn about 1.5" wide just waiting for a project.
Cut a 1.5" length of PVC pipe using a hacksaw or pipe cutter if you have one. Tape a piece of thick paper over one end to seal it up.
Add about 10 grains of rice (or beads, or whatever) to the pipe to rattle around, than seal up the other end, Tape it all together really well.
Take a long strip of fabric and tie it around the middle of your pipe/rattle, leaving a "tail" of about 4". Position the tail so that it is hanging out one end and begin wrapping the longer strip of fabric around the pipe/rattle. Keep wrapping the strip of fabric around the pipe until it's completely covered, then cut of the rest.
Cut a strip of fabric about 8" long and tie it around the pipe, holding the loose end that you had wrapped around it in place. Make a knot to look like a pair of ears. Cut off any extra fabric.
Play with your kitty!
You could probably add catnip to these (just wrap it up in the fabric), but my cat doesn't actually really like catnip for some reason...
Here's a great site for other ideas on how to make cat toys. There's even a video for how to make a toy out of your cats own fur...