Show Your Puppy Love, with this DIY Dog Warmer! (also a good hand warmer!)

If you've got a doggy, you'll know how much time is spent wondering how to make them happier/warmer/healthier and so on... in some senses, this is even more important in the colder months - and that could well be the case if you've got a moggy too; likewise this How To Make a Doggy/Moggy Warmer is also for you..! 

This long-overdue post is dedicated to my running partner, my walking pal, my constant shadow... My Boy Rod! Obviously, you can use the EXACT same process to make a gift for a gal pal, or boy toy (erm..?) -I just chose to make Rod the lucky recipient this time! And, if you'd rather watch the video tutorial, you can find that here!
 
If I miss anything out from the process, or you've got any tips on how to make this even better, please leave a comment - I love sharing ideas!

Sew Long Summer...

I can't say I'm a fan of the winter months; the 'keeping cosy', wrapping up warm, sitting by a crackling fire with a good book... I would LOVE to be that person (and can do it in small doses) - but on the whole I'm a summer gal. I love leaving the house without a coat (I know, reckless, right?) - not worrying whether it'll cloud over, or if I'll need a wrap/scarf/gloves later on... Naturally, I am a child of the sun. Whether or not this is because of my half-Spanish heritage, who knows - I could be using that as an excuse, but this is the truth about the way I view the winter - with reticence. And you could argue that Rod is just copying me, to keep in my good books, or to further prove how much we have in common... but I believe his short hair, and lack of body fat, contribute to his feeling the chill easily. (I can't lay claim to either of those physical attributes.) I DIGRESS!!

The point is, when the days get shorter, and the nights get colder, I find he makes his way into my bed much more frequently. A couple of years ago, I tried putting him in a coat to sleep in, and he slept right through the night (yes, I am aware how much I make him sound like a baby...) - so it got me thinking that if he was warmer, he would relax more easily, and sleep better (and therefore so would I!). What to do?


I decided to create a hot water bottle for him... without the water. In other words, I set about thinking what I could put in his bed with him to generate warmth... A while ago I bought my Mum one of those lavender bag things you stick in the microwave for a few minutes, before resting on your neck, or relaxing with it nearby. "How hard could that be to make?!" I thought...

I don't lay claim to being original with these ideas, you understand, which is why I'm relaying the process I went through to creating the Heated Dog Pad. And yes, I am trying in earnest to come up with a more inspirational & catchy name for it, until then the Heated Dog Pad will have to do...



And Sew to the How To!


I made two versions, one from a quilted material in a bone shape, the second from a fleece dog blanket in a heart-shape. I prefer the second, for various reasons I'll tell you at the end... One of my pet hates is when a crafting blog says, "Take an old pillowcase and cut into it to make..," - I mean, how many of us have old pillowcases hanging around the house?! I suppose it tells you something about the type of material you'll need (fairly thin cotton, would be cheap in price & easy to get hold of)..? 

So.

Start by taking an old pillowcase, 
and cut into it to make the 'inner sack' of the Heated Dog Pad, in whatever shape takes your fancy (for me it's the heart and the bone). It should be approximately the length of the dog you're making it for (if you think about it, that makes sense from a keeping warm point of view!). When you've cut two exact pieces from the 'pillowcase', cut the same shape, 1cm larger around the seams, from either quilting material, or fleece blanket. I found the latter in a pound shop on the high street, this really is a cheap way to get hold of the material you'll need.


Sew the two similar pieces of material together, being careful to leave a 2cm gap. The cotton inner lining should then be inserted into the quilting (or fleece, if that's what you've made it from), before filling with the 'stuffing', which is what will keep the pad warm.

*Another one of my pet hates is when celebrity cooks say something like "take lavender from your herb garden, when it's in full bloom in the right season, and dry it out in your airing cupboard til it's fit for use..,". So you'll have to forgive me, as my house came with it's own patch of lavender in the back garden (nothing to do with me), as I say...

Take lavender from your herb garden, dry it out in the airing cupboard, and then mix it with either pearl barley or rice, to make the filling for your pad. (*And no, I didn't grow the rice, smarty pants). 

Add a couple of drops of lavender oil (again, I found this in the pound shop), and then funnel into the cotton inner sack. You're then ready to sew up the inner lining, and then the outer casing, before giving it a test in the microwave!


A quick word of warning...


 If you're the arty type, don't use metallic thread to adorn your handiwork with some glittery lettering spelling out "Paddy's Pad" (for example). No metal objects in microwaves! This is the only warning I will give, along with 'Don't put the pad in the microwave for periods longer than 30 seconds; if it needs re-heating to make warmer, jiggle it around for ten secs, then put back in for another 30 seconds.' 

There, warnings done.

What you're left with (if your sweetheart is anything like My Boy), is a wary animal who won't want to go anywhere near what you've spent ages making..! This is one of the reasons why I'm more a fan of working with the dog blanket fleece for this project, apart from being easy to work with, (as it cuts well and doesn't fray) it also smells of him!
(*if you're canny before making it, let him sleep on it)

FYI - I was under the misguided impression that Rod would find lavender as relaxing as I do. He does not. I was also under the impression it would make him smell more... fragrant. It didn't. However his dog bed smelt as if it had just been washed... so... every cloud. Anyway, if you want to leave the lavender bit out, then that's fine too. This is a quick, cheap and easy project to undertake, one cold wintery afternoon when you're sat by a crackling fire eating chestnuts... wishing you were on a beach eating tapas. Or is that just me...?


I love you Rod! 




Comments

  1. I love my grand-dog too ! And I love this idea of a puppy-warmer-comforter etc.. It would be great for new puppies that are missing their Mums - if you could make it tick too !! The first puppy we had we had to wrap up with an alarm clock and a hot water bottle (the clock substitutes the Mum's heart of course). This is a lovely idea for pet-owners (and their pets). Well done again my love..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Mum! Maybe I could add something - like a flap - on the side, where a ticking clock can be inserted *after* it comes out of the microwave!! x

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