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Pet parent demonstrates hack for crafting the perfect cost-effective pet toy: 'Guaranteed to keep tails wagging'

"This is clever."

"This is clever."

Photo Credit: Instagram

Got old clothes and a furry friend? This Instagram video will teach you how to DIY a dog toy.

The scoop

On Instagram, Rada (@ecowithrada) shared an easy way to turn your old t-shirts into the perfect dog toy.

"Upcycle your old T-shirts into a vibrant, sustainable chew toy that promises endless fun for your furry friend," she wrote. "It's guaranteed to keep tails wagging."

Here are Rada's 5 steps to making this DIY dog toy:

1. Cut up your old t-shirts into long strips that are 5 centimeters — around 2 inches — wide.

2. Cut 17 strips. Set two aside and bunch together three groups of five strips.

3. Tightly braid together the strips.

4. Use the two extra strips you set aside earlier to tie off the ends of the braids.

5. Trim off any excess scrap — you don't want your furry friend to swallow any material.

How it's helping

If you're like most dog owners, you probably buy way too many toys for your furry best friend. While your dog may appreciate it, your bank account may feel differently as the cost of dog toys adds up. This hack not only saves you time at pet stores, but it also keeps more money in your pocket.

According to State of Matter, "An estimated 11.3 million tons of textile waste end up in U.S. landfills yearly," which releases planet-warming methane pollution when it decomposes, making extreme weather more likely and putting communities at risk worldwide.

That's 22 billion pounds of textile waste — unsold clothing, used clothing, manufacturing excess, and household textiles — produced every year in the U.S. alone. The Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles Association, known as SMART, reported that "95% of used clothing and textiles can be reused and recycled."

That's a huge amount of preventable waste. So if your old t-shirts aren't in the best condition for selling or donating, don't just toss them out. There are plenty of unique and easy ways to upcycle your old clothes.

You can repurpose shirts into reusable Swiffer pads, tote bags, quilts, and paper towels — just about anything your crafty mind can come up with. 

If you're not the DIY type, there's still hope for your old clothes. Marine Layer's recycling program will pay you for your shirts, even if they're not in great condition.

Looking for more ways to recycle and upcycle? Check out our guide on recycling options.

What everyone's saying

Commenters loved this tip — and their dogs will too.

One user commented that even if you don't have a dog at home, it "makes a good gift for fur parents."

"Ohhhh this is clever," another said. "And probably so much stronger than a lot of dog toys in shops."

Commenters found Rada's idea to be "a brilliant way to reuse those tees."

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