Free knitting pattern: The Purly Paw Print Patchwork Blanket

Purly Paw Prints Patchwork Blanket - Marcel and the blanket

Comfort blankets for homeless hounds! Yay!

I heart hounds. I really do. Snoopy is my Yoda, Hong Kong Phooey is my Mr Miyagi, and when I was little I wanted to grow up to be The Littlest Hobo.

So when Battersea Dogs & Cats Home got in touch to ask me to create another free knitting pattern for them, this time for their canine chums, I was tail-waggingly thrilled to do it.

For those of you who have been stalking me for a while, you’ll know I created the scurvy Captain Cat-Battler  for the home last year. The results were jaw-dropping, as Battersea was swamped by purled pirate mice from all over. (Read all about it here)

This knitting challenge would be a bit different. Battersea cares for 1000s of homeless hounds every year. With around 450 resident at their three sites at any one time. That’s a whole lot of dogs to care for and keep amused. Some of these dogs get a bit stressed out by kennel life, or need operations or time to recover from illnesses, and these dogs are fostered by kind folks for short spaces of time. And that’s where the knitting comes in.

The Purly Paw Print Patchwork Blanket is a canine comfort blanket for homeless hounds. The idea is that every blanket Battersea receives is put in a ‘doggy bag’ which goes with the dog to their foster home, and eventually to their new home when they get a new owner. It’s a little part of the world that is just theirs, when everything else is changing. A handmade hug.

Purly Paw Prints Patchwork Blanket - more paws

Paws for pups

The blanket is made up of simple ‘knit and purl’ squares in four different designs: a plain square, a teeny paw print square for miniscule mutts, a medium paw print square for canines of middle size, and a HUGE paw print square for bigger beasts. Sew them all together and you have one woolly comfort blanket for a canine in need of cuddles.

Purly Paw Print Patchwork Blanket - Battersea Dogs & Cats Home

Four-legged friends welcome

Each paw print represents one of the 1000s of dogs of all shapes and sizes that Battersea has helped to rehome.

My Paw Print Blanket is designed to be easy peasy, so even a beginner knitter can make it. It’s also knit in patches so you can stop and start when you like, or you can team up with friends and make one between you.

Once I had designed it, it was knit up and sewn together for me by my two fantabulous knitting friends, Frances Lee and Emmy Harrup and Frances’ fabulous mum Mrs Lee), who are both big fans of canine kind too (thanks so much, ladies!). We picked bright and sunny colours so it would really stand out.

The best part was that Battersea invited us along to the Home to meet the hounds our blankets will be helping. Frances who helped knit the blanket came too, along with my Dad in case he could steal a dog. Woo hoo!

We were shown around by the lovely Charlotte who explained every step from the hand-sewn scent bags people can donate to help calm the dogs (find the scent bag pattern here), to the classical music and talk radio the dogs listen to in the kennels, to their toys and amazing outdoor play areas, to the cats in their multi-level kingdoms.

Fancy coming along and meeting them too?

Click on the images below for a photo tour. Prepare yourself for animal cuteness in the extreme. You have been warned:

[flickr-gallery mode="photoset" photoset="72157629510581087"]

At the end of the tour I handed the very first blanket over the a foster dog called Marcel, who was being fostered by Lauren (excellent name) who worked at Battersea too.

Purly Paw Prints Patchwork Blanket - Marcel and the blanket

Marcel chills out on the Paw Print Blanket and eyes us for treats

You can download the Purly Paw Print Patchwork Blanket from the Battersea Dogs & Cats Home website (which also have details of where to send it):

Click here to download the Paw Print Blanket Knitting Pattern

And if you want to find out more about fostering a Battersea Dog can find out more here. Battersea is also open to the public for visiting, so if you’re in the area go in and look around. It’s inspiring and the inhabitants are always friendly.

Thanks to Battersea for the terrific tour. And thanks to all of you knitters who I know will grab your yarn and needles and make handmade hugs for homeless hounds. What a marvellous bunch you are.





  1. Hanna Mayhew
    March 5, 2012

    My friend linked this on Facebook and I’ve just ordered some yarn and cant wait to get started.

    Any chance of putting the pattern up on Ravelry so we can put it in our projects?

    • Deadly Knitshade
      March 5, 2012

      Temp page up now (been out all day) but will make it all lovely when I’m home. Hooray for iPhones.

      So pleased you’re going to knit one. 🙂

      • Hanna Mayhew
        March 5, 2012


        One? I bought four balls so that’ll be three blankets! Or perhaps one normal and one really big for really big dogs? 🙂

        • Deadly Knitshade
          March 5, 2012

          Woo hoo! That’s ace. The hounds will be so happy!

  2. Sarah - Crafts From The Cwtch
    March 5, 2012

    This is such a lovely idea! Yay for all your work and for the lovely people at Battersea – will be sharing and retweeting for you too x

    • Deadly Knitshade
      March 5, 2012

      Yay! Glad you like it. I love donating stuff to Battersea. They’re fabulous. Thanks for the pimping. You are most kind. 🙂 xx

    March 26, 2012

    Habe diesen Blogpost über die Suche zum Thema Knittingpattern gefunden. Den Blog muss ich mir bookmarken. Vielen Dank für den Post und liebe Grüße, Rebekka.

  4. Michelle
    May 14, 2012

    Needles and yarn brought, cant wait to get started. Will be spreading the word.

  5. Clare Davies
    June 16, 2012

    Hi! Synchronicity or what?? We are the Yarn Bombers of Dorking Cockerel fame and we were all discussing what to do after our next Olympic offering, with the 8m scarf we knitted for the chook. And someone suggested Battersea Dogs home – no way!!
    Love your website and we have your book in The Fluffatorium in Dorking, so I have been inspired by your guerillaness antics!
    Love, Clare

    • Deadly Knitshade
      June 18, 2012

      Hi Clare. Ace. Battersea is an amazing charity and everyone there loves knitting. Especially the dogs. 🙂

      Loved your Cockerel Scarf and so pleased my book is in The Fluffatorium (best name ever). Keep up the good woolly work!

  6. Julie
    June 29, 2012

    I absolutely love this pattern. Can’t wait to get started, but I must finish the blanket I’m making for Hope Rescue (based in Wales) first. Would it be OK to use the pattern to make blankets for Hope Rescue as well? They specialise in finding homes for dogs from pounds. I was thinking of doing one for Battersea, one for Hope, one for Battersea, one for Hope… But if you’d rather I only used this pattern for Battersea that’s fine.

  7. jane
    October 23, 2015

    Can worsted weight yarn be used ?

  8. Margaret
    March 28, 2016

    Could anyone tell me please how to arrange the squares to form a pattern ? I can’t quite get the formula ! Thanks !

    • Deadly Knitshade
      March 28, 2016

      Hi Margaret. There is no set pattern so you can arrange them in any way you like! I find it best to lay them all out and swap them around to see what I like best once they’re all made. Good luck!