Want To Learn How To Make Dog Toys? Turn Your Old Socks Into This Cute, No-Sew Octopus! 

If you want to learn how to make dog toys, this is the perfect place to start! This cute octopus is simple, eco-friendly, and uses items that you already have around the house.

final diy sock octopus dog toy in orange and blue sitting in tree

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Turn Old Socks into a New Dog Toy

Between my dogs (well, one in particular) and the dryer, I have an abundance of mismatched socks with holes. Rather than send them to the landfill, I decided to turn something my dogs love (socks) into something they love and are actually allowed to play with. 

I’ve been wanting to learn how to make dog toys for some time now, as my dogs destroy store-bought toys at a record pace, and I’m completely done with picking up little bits of fuzz all over the house.

Plus, knowing that typical polyester stuffing can take up to 200 years to decompose, I decided to cut these not-so-eco-friendly dog toys out of our lives and search for some more sustainable options.

I brainstormed for some time on how to make dog toys with things I already had around the house. Given that my dogs are not only toy destroyers but also sock fanatics (Froda in particular), I tried to create a toy from old socks. 

After a bit of experimenting, the sock octopus (aka “socktopus”) was born. 

Get the instructions

Just want to dive right in? I get it. Skip right to the instructions. Or if you don’t have time to get crafty now, save the below pin for later.

title of diy sock octopus dog toy with instructions and image of final toy along with mini dapple dachshund dog holding the toy

I must say, I love the win-win result. Our dogs still have the excitement that a new toy brings but without the cost or the waste.

And after a week or so of watching our pups play, I can say with confidence this toy is indeed a winner in our house. The octopus head has enough weight to make it an excellent option for fetch. And the dangly legs get our pups in the mood to play.

final diy sock octopus dog toy in orange and blue placed on wooden table

Froda now continually chooses one of the sock octopuses over her other toys (which, I have to admit, makes me smile).

mini dapple dachshund dog on terrace with paw on top of blue diy sock octopus toy

So, now let me walk you through how to make this cute, simple, no-sew octopus. That’s right, no needle and thread required. The only tool you’ll need is a pair of scissors. 

And in terms of supplies, there is also just one…socks! So, gather up those old, mismatched socks you, fortunately, haven’t thrown away yet, and let’s get started. 

Supplies Needed

You only need a few, easy supplies for this 5-minute dog toy.

  • Scissors
  • Calf-high sock in good condition (for the body)
  • 2-4 smaller socks (for stuffing)
materials needed to make diy sock octopus dog toy

Don’t worry if the smaller socks have holes since they will be used as filling.

Xtra Eco Tip: If you don’t have enough socks, you can also repurpose old clothes or use stuffing from worn-out dog toys. The goal is to reuse things you already have and avoid using new, non-biodegradable stuffing.

How to Make a Socktopus

Step 1: Make the Octopus Head

Stuff the toe of the calf-high sock with the smaller socks, adjusting them to create a rounded head shape. Once you’re satisfied, tie a knot in the main sock to hold the stuffing in place.

Step 2: Cut the 8 Legs

Next, fold the sock below the knot in half and cut it from the bottom, stopping just below the knot. This will divide the sock into two halves. And then cut each of these halves in half again, resulting in four pieces.

To achieve the required eight legs, cut each of the four pieces in half, stopping just below the knot.

steps in process to make diy sock dog toy

Step 3: Form the Legs

To add some character and durability to the legs, tie simple knots. Start with one leg, tying a knot at the top just below the main knot and a second at the bottom.

Then create two more knots between the top and bottom knots, spacing them out evenly. Repeat this process for the remaining 7 legs. This should only take a couple of minutes.

steps in process to make diy sock dog toy

And, you are done! Step back and admire your work before handing it over to your toy destroyer.

completed diy sock octopus dog toy in orange

Xtra Health Tip: Although it would look cute, avoid gluing on eyes, drawing a face, etc. Stick with a minimalist design to keep your pup safe.  

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Now that You Know How to Make Dog Toys, It’s Playtime!

Give the legs a little shake and toss it to your pup! It’s the perfect size and shape for some eco-friendly fetch. And check out some other options for sustainable dog games in my blog post here.

While the sock octopus may not last forever, you can take pride in giving your socks a second life, reducing the amount of polyester stuffing in your life, AND creating a hand-crafted toy for your pup to love.

And, remember, once this little octopus is beyond repair, don’t just throw it away. Save the pieces for your next DIY dog toy! 

mini dapple dachshund dog on terrace chewing blue diy sock octopus toy
mini dapple dachshund dog on terrace chewing blue diy sock octopus toy
mini dapple dachshund dog on terrace with paw on top of blue diy sock octopus toy

DIY Sock Octopus Instructions

final diy sock octopus dog toy in orange and blue sitting in tree

DIY Sock Octopus

Yield: 1
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Active Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Difficulty: Easy
Estimated Cost: Free
If you've wondered how to make dog toys, look no further. This cute, no-sew octopus is a great place to start. Not only is it super simple to make, but it also prioritizes sustainability by giving a second life to your old socks (which will make your pup and the planet happy).


  • 1 calf-high sock
  • 3-4 small socks


  • Scissors


  1. Stuff the toe of a calf-high sock with several smaller socks.
  2. Adjust the stuffing to form a rounded head and then tie a knot in the main sock to hold everything in place.
  3. From the opening of the sock to just below the knot, cut the sock into 8 equal strips to form the legs.
  4. To add some durability (and character), tie 4 evenly spaced knots in each of the legs.
  5. Toss the finished product to your pup and have fun playing together!


  • If you don’t have enough socks for stuffing, you can also repurpose pieces of old clothes or use stuffing from worn-out dog toys. 
  • Avoid gluing on eyes, drawing a face, etc. Stick with a minimalist design to keep your pup safe.  

FAQs: How to Make Sock Dog Toys

How durable are sock dog toys?

Sock dog toys can vary in durability depending on factors such as the materials used, the stitching technique, and the strength of your dog’s chewing habits.

Are sock toys safe for all dogs?

Sock toys can be safe for many dogs, but it’s essential to consider your dog’s size, chewing habits, and any potential hazards such as loose threads or small embellishments.

Always supervise your dog when playing with homemade toys and check the toy regularly for signs of wear and tear. And if your dog makes a habit of swallowing socks, this is probably not a good option.

How do I clean a sock dog toy?

This toy can be cleaned by hand or in the washing machine, depending on the materials used. Use mild detergent and cold water, and air dry the toy thoroughly before giving it back to your dog.

Can I customize the sock toy for my dog’s preferences?

Absolutely! One of the benefits of making your own dog toys is the ability to customize them to suit your dog’s preferences. You can experiment with different sock sizes, colors, and textures to create a toy that your dog will love.

Just make sure to avoid adding any small pieces that can cause a choking hazard.

What if my dog swallows part of the sock toy?

If your dog ingests part of the sock toy or if the toy becomes damaged and poses a choking hazard, it’s essential to contact your veterinarian immediately.

Monitor your dog for signs of distress, such as vomiting, diarrhea, or abdominal discomfort, and seek prompt medical attention if necessary.

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title of want to learn how to make dog toys? turn your old socks into this cute, no-sew octopus with image of final diy sock octopus dog toy in orange and blue sitting in tree

More Homemade Toy Ideas

Check out my other posts on fun, easy, and sustainable dog toys!

DIY Sock Pumpkin

DIY Sock Bunny

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