5 Pet Products You Can Make & Sell

The pet industry is growing by leaps and bounds!

More and more money is being spent on toys, treats, beds, and even Halloween costumes…for pets.

If you have a pet of your own I’m sure you can relate. And what better person to make pet products than a pet owner.

I currently have two dogs in my home, plus two cats. They are great company, entertainment, and companions. And when I’m having an off day, they pick up on it and come for extra cuddles.

They can also turn my house upside down when they decide it’s play time. Anyone who knows me personally has seen or heard of the destruction the cats (aka hellions) can cause. They melted my heart when I saw the picture of them, and I can’t imagine life without them now. I am, however, a little afraid of what’s going to happen to my Christmas tree when I put it up.

This post is going to give you 5 products you can make and sell either online, offline, or both. And they are just the beginning of what can become a mile-long list if you were to do some brainstorming.

1. Dog Treats

As pet owners we want what’s best for our canine companions. By making treats with basic ingredients, we know exactly what goes into them. I have recently made some with pumpkin puree, peanut butter, oil, eggs, and whole wheat flour. My dogs loved them!

I am going to try another recipe this week which uses milk, peanut butter, flour, baking powder, and cinnamon. I think adding some cheese, bacon bits (not the simulated ones), and even just a tablespoon of bacon grease will give both recipes doggy-appeal.

These are the 3 bigger sizes.
This is the smallest size, perfect for training.

My daughter scored the cookies before baking so they were easy to break.

Funny story: I went out for the evening the day after we baked these, and while I was gone my hellions knocked the container of treats on the floor. Cats and dogs ate almost all of the treats in that container. Luckily I had put the mini ones in separate containers so they didn’t get them.

2. Pet Toys

All pets need to be entertained to some degree, and toys are just one way of doing it. I find the easiest toys to make are cat toys because all one needs is some yarn, stuffing, fabric, and a dowel.

Dog toys can also be made with yarn or fabric, such as a water bottle inside a denim cover. If you’re into macrame, a rope toy can be made using thick cotton cord and tight knots.

Even the birds of the household need toys to keep them busy. These can be made with untreated wood, which can be easily obtained from your backyard. The key is to make sure you are using wood from a tree that is safe for birds.

Macrame can come in handy for bird toys too. Medium weight cord, a bell, and a small mirror purchased at your local Dollar Store will keep birds entertained for hours.

3. Dog Sweaters & Booties

If you live in a cold climate like I do, your puppy of any age probably wears a sweater at some point. I find the smaller the dog, the greater the need for a sweater.

I have crocheted sweaters for my dog from acrylic yarn, but I do have to say using a natural fibre is better when it comes to both heat retention and breathability.

When I had alpacas I made coats for the babies using fleece, quilt batting, and cotton fabric. They worked well to help the littles retain some body heat when it was cold out. We had a couple born during the winter so keeping them warm was essential.

Booties can be made from yarn, fabric, or even a light leather. The trick is getting the dogs used to wearing them while they’re inside so they’re not so inclined to take them off outside.

4. Blankets & Beds

Crocheters, knitters, and sewers have a lot of options when it comes to making beds and blankets for dogs, cats, rabbits, and whatever other type of pet you have.

I have made cat caves and sold a few at a local Christmas Market a few years ago. I crocheted mine from wool roving I found at a local Thrift Shop, and used a large hook. The only thing I didn’t do was add a cardboard or plastic insert to keep it open. If you’re interested in making cat caves I do suggest cutting a 4 litre ice cream bucket to make the interior support. This way the cat will be able to crawl inside easily. Otherwise it just becomes something they lay on top of.

Blankets and beds can be made from recycled denim, cotton, and even worn bed sheets/quilts. Just cut to size, add some quilt batting or stuffing, and voila!

5. Cat Trees

If you have access to used carpet (or scraps of new), scrap pieces of untreated wood, and a heavy duty staple gun you have a good portion of what is needed for cat trees.

I bought one from Amazon earlier this year for my two hellions and it is covered with something similar to minky fabric. I do have to say, carpet is definitely the better way to go. The one my ex-husband made for my cat 3 decades ago was by far sturdier than the one I have now; and it was 7′ tall. And not once did she tip it over. (The one I bought has been tipped over twice, and is now being held down by an antique sewing machine.)

A cat tree is a wonderful playground and place to relax for your kitties, depending on how they feel. Mine will play on it, then go to their favourite spots on it and nap: Mickey either in or on the cave part, and Merlot on the very top. They both no longer fit in the same spot at the same time.

Conclusion

I haven’t gone into great detail about how to make any of the above products, simply because this post would have been eBook size. There are resources available online (just don’t get sucked into the Pinterest Rabbit Hole) on how to make treats, sweaters, cat caves and more.

All of the above can be sold either online or offline. I would suggest local markets and/or pet stores first, especially when it comes to the cat trees. The shipping alone will be expensive, even if you can package it in pieces with assembly instructions.

Have you considered pet products as a side hustle? If so, which will you start with?

Update on Yesterday’s Post

Today has turned out to be a great day!

I got a phone call just before noon from a lady over 10 miles away saying my dog was in her yard. I asked for a picture of him, and sure enough it was him! There were tears of joy, and I couldn’t get to her house fast enough.

He is doing fine, considering he has been gone for days. He seems to have lost a little weight, but that’s minor compared to what could have been. He has had a bit of food and is now napping on the living room floor.

I will resume his regular feeding schedule in a couple days. Right now I am going to give him smaller portions, but not exceed his total allotted amount in a day. I’m sure he hasn’t eaten much of anything since his breakfast Monday morning.

When a pet goes missing, don’t be quick to give up the search. And by letting local vets and shelters know one is missing right away, there’s a good chance that’s where the person who finds your pet will call. That was the case with Buddy. The local vet was called, and my number was given out. I was just getting ready to drive into town to hang up posters when I got the call.

Such a happy day!

Our Pets are Family Too

Recent events have made me stop and think about why I started this website/blog.

You’ve read my posts on side hustles, which there are more than any other topic I had intended to cover when I started this. You’ve also read about my loss of Ross in May 2020.

As of today I’m going to talk more about what being over 50 means; the good and the bad. We so often shut people out when they’re going through a rough time; simply because we ourselves don’t know how to deal with the situation.

I’m aware that I could be shut out as well, but I’m a big girl and can handle it. Now let me back up the bus just a little.

On Monday afternoon my geriatric Blue Heeler went missing. He is blind, fairly deaf, and 12 years old. My last time to see him was in the morning before I went to my doctor’s appointment, and when I got home I figured he was asleep in his house. And at that point, he most likely was.

My side door camera picked him up walking down the steps and out of camera range at 1:25 in the afternoon. He’s an old boy, so spends several hours during the day napping. He’ll make his rounds between my house and my father-in-law’s, but is always home for supper. When he didn’t eat I then realized there was something wrong.

I searched around the yard that evening, but it’s not the first time he’s been gone for a few hours. When he still hadn’t returned by morning I became really concerned. I searched my yard, nearby fields, ditches, and my father-in-law’s yard…to no avail. By the end of the day I had walked (according to my Fitbit) almost 9 miles. No sign of him anywhere.

After looking yesterday without any sign of him, my hopes of finding him alive are diminishing. I am utilizing the power of Facebook as one last ditch effort to get him back; or at least find out what happened to him. Calls to the SPCA and local vet have turned up nothing.

What hurts my heart the most is there are people out there who steal dogs for their own gain; and it’s rarely just because they want their own dog. Our world is full of uncaring people, who don’t consider a pet as a family member. Our pets are a big part of our family, and when one disappears without a trace it’s heartbreaking.

We’ve had pets die before, but with that comes closure. When they disappear the closure isn’t there, and our minds conjure up all sorts of things. I’m a big girl and know death is a fact of life. I’ve experienced it enough in my lifetime but also know closure is needed. It doesn’t get easier as we age; dealing with death. In fact, we’re more aware of it as we age I think.

If you’ve joined me just to learn how to make money with side hustles, I’ll still be posting about them. I’m also going to post about other things life throws at me; both good and bad. Maybe I’ll talk more about my pets, my friends, my kids. Maybe I’ll talk about a new recipe I have tried or pattern I have designed…or book I have read.

I don’t claim to have all the answers; I just go through life one day at a time like everyone else does. And right now, my missing dog is all I can think about. If he’s passed on simply because it was his time, all I want is to do is find him. If he’s still alive, I want him home.

Buddy sitting in my swing with me. He was so happy.