Snuffle mats are a fantastic way to keep your dog entertained by engaging their natural instinct to sniff and search. They’re also good for fast eaters, who can be encouraged to slow down by eating their kibble from the snuffle mat instead of a bowl. No matter what you use it for, a snuffle mat can give your dog’s senses—and his brain—a great work-out. Here’s how to make one.
Plastic or rubber sink mat with holes large enough for fleece strips to pass through
1.25-1.5 yards fleece fabric
STEP 1: Cut fleece into strips that are approximately 1-2” wide by 7-9” long. No need to obsess about perfection; you can vary the sizes of the strips as they do not need to all be exactly the same. You will need a lot of fleece strips (minimum of 200).
STEP 2: To attach the strips, start in one corner of the mat, push the ends of one strip through two adjacent holes in the mat. Flip the mat over, and do one overhand knot (like the first step of tying a shoelace), pull it tight. There is no need to tie it a second time.
STEP 3: Repeat the above working down each row of the mat. If your mat is not as fluffy or full as you like, add additional strips, working in the opposite direction by tying the strips either diagonally through two adjacent holes or going in a straight line in the opposite direction of the completed rows.
To load your snuffle mat, just sprinkle the treats or kibble right on top of it. Keep your mat clean after use by being sure to using dry food items only and giving the mat a good shake after your dog is finished to remove leftover crumbs. Always supervise your dog while using the snuffle mat to prevent them from chewing and ingesting the fabric or mat.