Let sleeping dogs lie on homemade rag rugs.

Rag Rugs for Dogs

by L. Christine Shepard

Repurpose recycled cotton shirts and sheets into strong and machine washable rag rugs perfect for dogs. Depending on the size of your pet, create these rugs in any size needed. Make several of these rugs for your dog for comfortable sleeping spots in any room in the house, which also saves your carpet and furniture from wear and tear. Once your dog becomes used to sleeping on these rag rugs, less dog hair appears on other household objects.

Measure and cut all old sheets and shirts into long 2-inch wide strips, with a ruler and scissors. Make the strips as long as possible, depending on the size of the shirts and sheets.

Gather three long cut strips in your hand and pin the ends of the strips to a large piece of upholstered furniture such as a sofa. Begin braiding the strips by passing each outer strip over the center strip.

Add additional strips to the braid when 2 inches of the old strip is left, braiding the new strips with the same method. After you have incorporated all the fabric strips into a long braid, remove the safety pin.

Lay one braid end on a flat surface such as a table. Thread a tapestry needle with 24-inches of carpet thread. Coil one end of the braid tightly. Make small stitches every 1/2-inch with the tapestry needle and carpet thread to keep the coil securely together.

Continue coiling the braid and making small stitches every 1/2-inch with the tapestry needle and carpet thread, until the entire braid, other than 2 inches makes up the rag rug for your dog.

Pull the final braid end to the top of the rug and attach it to the coil with the tapestry needle and thread. Flip the rug over. The side with the stitches becomes the bottom of the dog rag rug.

Items you will need

  • 10 old sheets and shirts
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Large safety pin
  • Tapestry needle
  • Carpet thread


  • Find old sheets and shirts at thrift shops.


  • Do not make large stitches with the needle and thread, which may not hold up to wear and tear from the dog or the washing machine.

About the Author

L. Christine Shepard has been a print journalist since 1994, covering news, home improvement, gardening and food for the "Oakland Press," "Rochester Post," "Troy Times" and "Michigan Meetings and Events" magazine. She has a bachelor's degree in journalism from Oakland University and received the Michigan Press Association award for journalism.

Photo Credits

  • Comstock/Stockbyte/Getty Images