How to Make a Snuffle Mat for Your Dog or Cat: 5 Fun Ideas and DIYs to Check Out

Rayna Skiver - Author

Nov. 6 2023, Published 4:55 p.m. ET

Mixed breed dog standing over a red, white, and blue snuffle mat
Source: ISTOCK

The Gist:

  • Snuffle mats are a great enrichment tool for dogs and cats.

  • The price of a basic mat typically starts around $15, but larger or more complex versions can cost as much as $40.

  • Making a snuffle mat at home can be more affordable and convenient.

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If you have a high-energy dog that never seems to get tired, adding a snuffle mat into their toy rotation could help. These mats are designed to put your furry friend’s natural foraging and sniffing skills to work.

However, after a quick search online, you might not be ready to spend $15 or more on an odd-looking bundle of fleece. Instead, you can learn how to make a snuffle mat for your dog or cat right at home.

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Check out these DIY snuffle mats for dogs:

Overhead view of a dog interacting with two multi-colored snuffle mats and slow feeders
Source: ISTOCK

As we mentioned earlier, snuffle mats are super beneficial for dogs and cats. Our companions can’t entertain themselves like we can — they need us to provide them with tools to help with mental stimulation. Snuffle mats are an easy solution to this problem.

Looking for treats inside little pockets of fleece might not seem all that entertaining to us, but it’s very exciting to our pets. All of the sniffing and searching helps alleviate boredom, anxiety, and stress, according to Rover. It’s also a great way to slow down meal times and turn them into a more meaningful activity.

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It’s possible to give snuffle mats a try without having the actual thing — all you need is a towel. Start by spreading the towel out on the floor. Next, take a few small treats or your dog’s kibble and scatter it around the fabric. To finish, tightly roll up the towel and tie it into a knot.

This towel trick aims to accomplish the same thing as a snuffle mat, which is to provide entertainment and stimulation. It’s the perfect way to see if your pet is interested in this type of activity without spending any money or devoting extra time to a DIY.

However, if you feel your dog or cat would love a snuffle mat, trying a DIY might be more practical in the long run.

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This simple DIY from Dream a Little Bigger is perfect for those who already have some crafting experience but aren’t experts. To make this, you’ll need sharp scissors, a rotary cutter, a ruler, one non-skid sink mat, and about two yards of fleece. The end product is a medium-sized, rectangular snuffle mat.

These mats can look like more than just basic shapes. If you’re a little bit more skilled or up for a challenge, you can make one with different elements or themes. For example, you could make this wreath snuffle mat from City Dog Expert or this snuffle ball from Popular Doodle.

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You can make snuffle mats for cats too.

Despite snuffle mats being marketed mostly for dogs, cats enjoy them too. They’re great for mischievous kittens that are full of energy. You could even have your dog and cat share a snuffle mat, as long as it’s not at the same time.

All the DIYs for dog snuffle mats work for cats, so you don’t have to make any specific changes. Although, cats might not even need a traditional-looking mat to reap the same benefits.

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On TikTok, one pet parent shared their version of a DIY snuffle mat, and it’s totally genius. They just took a cardboard box, filled it with some tissue paper, and hid the treats inside — sometimes, it really is that simple.

Another video showed a snuffle mat being created with unused fabrics around the house, like old shirts and bandanas. This is an awesome way to make something your cat will enjoy with items you already have at home.

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