It’s satisfyingly easy to make toys for your budgie that will bring him hours of entertainment and stimulation. With DIY toys you always need to apply the safety check list mentioned above (“Is it too big, too sharp, a potential trap, or toxic?”); but once you’ve ticked them all off you can make anything from a simple chew to an assault course. Try your hand making some of the toys in the list below. You can probably find versions of all of these in an online pet shop, but as they’re so easy to make you may as well save a few pounds and have some fun into the bargain.
If you’re using wood in your toys, wash it first in warm soapy water, rinse it, and dry it thoroughly. Wet wood is a breeding ground for bacteria, and that’s something you don’t want to be introducing into your birdcage.
Budgie Toys to Make
- Twig balls – twist some twigs and/or dried grass together. Your budgie will spend hours undoing all your good work… but that’s the whole idea. Hide some millet spray inside for a piñata effect.
Budgie with a twig ball - fun to make, fun to play with
- Balsa wood hanging towers – drill holes in disks or chunks of balsa and pass a rust-proof skewer or long bolt through them to form a climbing/swinging tower. If using a skewer, ensure the sharp end is screwed into some hard wood. Hang it from the top of the cage.
- Dowel ladder – get a thick piece of wood and drill holes at different heights and angles, matching the diameter of wooden dowelling rods. Poke the dowelling through the larger piece of wood, and secure your creation to the side of the cage with a plastic zip tie or eye-hook, resting the other end on the cage bottom. If your instinct is for something neater, you can make a standard ladder using dowelling too.
Ups and downs - a hen budgie and her ladder
- Moving ladder – drill holes through the centre of dowelling sticks and small wooden blocks and thread them in alternate layers using string or leather with a large knot in the end. Suspend your rotating ladder creation from the top of the cage.
- Bell chain – recycle suitable bells from old bird toys, or buy some small non-rusting metal bells. Rig them up on a hanging chain or trapeze. Don’t use any bell or chain with the potential for trapping your bird’s beak or foot.
- Sweetcorn swing – string some large wooden beads on a string, interspersed with sweetcorn cores.
- Hanging ring perch – thread a length of thick, knotted string through a hole in a wide wooden or plastic ring. Thread another, diametrically opposite. You need two more, so that each hole is 90 degrees from its neighbour. Fasten the four ends to a stick of non-toxic wood, and tie a very short length of budgie-friendly chain to the centre of the stick. Hang the perch from the top of the cage.
- Paper curls – cut several 1cm wide, 10cm long strips of paper. Use a flour and water ‘glue’ or egg white to fix them to a lollipop stick. When the glue is completely dry, create the curls by running them between your finger and thumb, making each curl a different length.