What is a snuffle mat?
A snuffle mat is a mat filled with tied fabric that doubles as an enrichment activity for pets. hiding treats in them creates a fun hide & seek game for your pet!
What are snuffle mats used for?
Snuffle mats are used for scent enrichment activities. The different fabric in different layers allows you to hide treats for your pets. As far as treats go, you can put some “high-value” ones that might be their favorites, but their regular kibble can also work well. Pets learn from the world by their sense of smell. Having them use their nose to sniff things out can allow them to use lots of their senses and enriches their mind at the same time. Snuffle mats are a great indoor enrichment activity!
The first time that you use the snuffle mat with them, you might wants to scatter the treats lightly on top. This will teach them that this is where they are going to look for their snack! Encourage them to sniff the mat, not pick it up with their mouth or chew on it.
You can watch our video or follow the steps below to create your own.
How to make a snuffle mat:
- Fleece blanket/throw
- Non-slip sink mat such as this one
- Take the blanket and lay it out on the floor.
- Use the ruler to measure out 6-7 inches (this does not need to be exact).
- Cut a strip across at the 6-7 inch mark, so that you have one to divide up into strips.
- Cut across the piece of fabric in an inch width to make your strips.
- Repeat this until you have enough strips to fill your entire board. For example, if you have a 9 x 9 inch board, you might need approximately 81 strips to fill all the holes.
- Once you have all of your strips, start tying them into the holes.
- You will thread one strip through one hole, and pull it through the adjacent hole.
- Double knot this on the top to secure the fabric to the mat.
- Continue this row by row until the entire mat is filled up.
- The tied fabric will press against each other, therefore filling up the snuffle mat and creating that full look.
The different size and textures are wonderful for your dog or cat, as this enables them to have to search harder for their treat. Check out our other enrichment ideas on our blog!