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10 DIY Puzzle Cat Feeders You Can Make Today (With Pictures)

Written by: Kristin Hitchcock

Last Updated on June 12, 2024 by Catster Editorial Team

Cat eating from Slow feederer

10 DIY Puzzle Cat Feeders You Can Make Today (With Pictures)

Puzzle feeders are a great way to get your cats exercising and keep them mentally stimulated as they go about their day. It’s also a great way to help your cat lose weight or slow down their eating habits if they tend to eat too fast and get sick. Here are some great DIY puzzle feeders you can use to enrich your cat’s life, we’ve arranged the plans into the following skill levels to help you find the best one for you.

3 cat face dividerLow-Level DIY

At the lowest level of DIY, we have things that just work out of the box. These are things you’ll find around your house that you can just sort of throw food into and call it a “puzzle feeder.”

1. Ice Tray by Peta

  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Materials Required: Ice Tray
  • Tools Required: None

This simple DIY plan doesn’t use any tools and only requires one material: ice trays.

Ice trays make a great puzzle feeder for cats, and you can get them for like $0.99 at the dollar store! Just drop some food into each cube tray and leave it for your cat to figure out.


2. Plastic Box Puzzle Feeder by the Glamcat

Plastic Box Puzzle Feeder by the Glamcat
Image Credit: Glamcat
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Materials Required: Disposable food container, rubbing alcohol, adhesive casters, small cat toys, treats, black marker
  • Tools Required: Scissors, lighter, utility knife

With a simple food container, you can make an interesting puzzle feeder for your feline. By cutting small holes into the lid and placing treats inside, you provide your cat with a fun opportunity to try and fish the treats out. We will admit, this puzzle is a bit harder than others. Some cats may not be able to do it, especially if they’re kittens (and lack fine motor skills).

However, the fishing motion is a bit different from other options on this list.


3. Toilet Paper Roll Feeder by Pets Plus Us

Toilet Paper Roll Feeder by Pets Plus Us
Image Credit: Pets Plus Us
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Materials Required: Used toilet paper rolls
  • Tools Required: Scissors or utility knife

This puzzle feeder may not last long, but it is extremely easy to make. All you need to do is fold the toilet paper in at the ends, preventing the treats from falling out. Then, you can cut various shapes into the toilet paper roll. By batting the toy around, your cat will knock out the toys.

This is an extremely easy way to entertain your cat quickly.


4. Tic Tac Kitty Treat Feeder by Chewy

Tic Tac Kitty Treat Feeder by Chewy
Image Credit: Chewy
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Materials Required: Cardboard, muffin tin
  • Tools Required: Scissors

This feeder is extremely easy—both for you and your cat. Therefore, it’s a great option for cats that have never used a puzzle feeder before and for young kittens. The feeder helps slow down fast eaters, too.

Plus, it’s extremely easy. All you need to do is cut up some cardboard, and you’re done!


5. Cat Vending Machine by Cutely Canadian

  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Materials Required: Toilet paper rolls, glue, tape, cardboard box
  • Tools Required: Scissors

If you’re looking for something a bit more involved and durable, this vending machine may be a good option. You basically need to glue cardboard rolls into a box, attach it to a base, and place treats inside each roll. The cat has to stick their paw into the correct hole and swipe the treat out.

It’s pretty easy, but with enough holes, you can keep your cat entertained for a fairly long time.


6. Injection Mold Puzzle Feeder by Cat Lessons

  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Materials Required: Paper injection mold, cardboard box
  • Tools Required: Box cutter

It isn’t every day that you have a paper injection mold laying around. However, when you do receive a package with one, you can turn it into a pretty long-lasting puzzle feeder. All you need is to cut into the injection mold a bit and add some treats. You can keep your cat entertained for a very long time with this puzzle feeder. divider-catclaw1

Intermediate DIY

Intermediate DIY requires a little bit of cutting here and there but shouldn’t need any power tools or expensive materials. Materials can be found in your house or bought cheaply from most convenience or grocery stores.

7. Cheese Crate by Food Puzzles For Cats

Cheese Crate by Food Puzzles For Cats 
Image Credit: Food Puzzles For Cats
  • Experience Level: Medium
  • Materials Required: Cheese crate, cardboard
  • Tools Required: Scissors

This is another pretty simple DIY tutorial that uses a cheese crate. You take a cheese crate, put a cardboard floor in the bottom, and then cut holes into it that can accommodate your cat’s paws. Then put some food inside and let them fish the food out with their paws!


8. Recycled Cardboard Box by Food Puzzles For Cats

Recycled Cardboard Box by Food Puzzles For Cats 
Image Credit: Food Puzzles For Cats
  • Experience Level: Medium
  • Materials Required: Cardboard box
  • Tools Required: Scissors

This recycled box plan is similar to the cheese crate, but you use a recycled cardboard box. If you use a small enough container, you can cut smaller holes and let your cats push and bat the box around to get the food pieces out!


9. Plastic Bottle by Purina

Plastic Bottle by Purina 
Image Credit: Purina
  • Experience: Medium
  • Materials Required: Plastic bottle
  • Tools Required: scissors

This plastic bottle DIY puzzle also doubles as a noise-making toy that your cat can enjoy! Like the others on this list, just cut some holes in a plastic bottle and then fill it with kibble and let your cat roll the bottle around to get the food out! divider-catclaw1

Advanced DIY

Advanced DIY requires more materials and will be more costly. You probably won’t just have these items lying around and buying them may be more expensive than just purchasing a puzzle feeder online. These are more for people who happen to have extra stuff laying around and want to repurpose items they already own!

10. Chair Feeder by Fundamentally feline

Chair Feeder by Fundamentally feline 
Image Credit: Fundamentally feline
  • Experience Level: Advanced
  • Materials Required: Chair with holes in the back, Tupperware cups, Velcro strips
  • Tools Required: Any required to remove the legs from the chair, adhesive for the Velcro strips

If you want to get fancy with your DIY skills, you can use this DIY plan that utilizes an old IKEA chair.

To make this DIY, you need a chair with circular holes in the back. Take the legs off the chair, then attach Tupperware containers to the side with the holes are using Velcro strips; make sure to attach them to the inside where your back would sit. Fill the Tupperware containers with food and reattach them to the chair. Place the chair seat side down and let your cat fish the food out of the Tupperware.

3 cat face divider

Conclusion

DIY puzzle feeders are fun ways to personalize your cats’ items for enrichment. Cats need mental stimulation as much as they need exercise and food. Puzzle feeders are a great way to get your cat moving while they eat and help them maintain good mental and physical health! There are many excellent DIY puzzle feeder ideas out there, and these are just a few of the best ones we were able to find!

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Featured Image Credit: Veera, Shutterstock

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