ExcitedCats is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more.

7 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.

divider-catclaw1Low-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

  • 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.

thematic break

2. Pear Box

  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Materials Required: Pear box
  • Tools Required: None

This plan is another great easy DIY plan that doesn’t require any finagling since pear boxes are another great what-you-see-is-what-you-get puzzle feeder. Cardboard pear boxes usually have little dividers that keep the pears from bouncing around while being transported. Drop some cat food into each little section and let your cats have at it!

thematic break

3. Egg Carton

  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Materials Required: Egg carton
  • Tools Required: None

Last up on our low-level DIY puzzles, we have this egg carton plan. Egg cartons also make great puzzle feeders. Just like the other low-level DIY puzzle feeders, you just have to drop some food into each egg slot and let your cats figure it out from there!

thematic break

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.

4. Cheese Crate

  • 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!

thematic break

5. Recycled Cardboard Box

  • 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!

thematic break

6. Plastic Bottle

  • 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!

thematic break

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!

7. Chair Feeder

  • 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.

divider-catclaw1Final Thoughts

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!

Related read: 6 DIY Slow Feed Cat Bowls You Can Make at Home (With Pictures)

thematic break

Featured Image Credit: Veera, Shutterstock