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We Try It: BarkBox

One day, the advertisements finally got to me, and because my puppers is a spoiled brat princess of a dog, (and because I had a coupon code) I did it. I ordered BarkBox.

A box full of dog toys.
Photo courtesy of BarkBox

Monthly subscription services have been all the rage lately, and BarkBox is no different.

You order in 1, 3, or 6-month subscriptions, and once a month, a box of treats and toys show up at your door for your pet’s enjoyment. Boxes are sent according to the size of your pet, to make sure that what you receive is size appropriate. According to the owners of BarkBox:

At BarkBox we give dog parents a way to spoil their dog every month. Our monthly box is carefully curated to only include homemade, all-natural treats and high-quality, unique toys. All our treats are made in the USA or Canada and for the most part these are things you can’t find at the typical big-box pet store. BarkBox costs as little as $19 per month and shipping is free.

Like I said earlier, I found a coupon code (they’re EVERYWHERE, seriously) and ended up getting a six-month subscription for only $17 per month. I figured I probably spend that much or more on treats and toys every month anyway, so what’s the real harm?

As for the review, the box shipped on the 16th of November, and arrived at my apartment on the 21st, which was right on time. It arrived by regular mail and was left right outside my door. The Daisy Dog could smell that there was good stuff in there immediately.

As to the stuff inside, this month’s theme was “Dogs at the Dinner Table,” with the idea being treats and toys that are reminiscent of all the yummy things we owners get to have on the regular. On to the actual product testing!

[icon name=”icon-asterisk”] The Zucchini Toy from P.L.A.Y. — If you watched the video, you would know that Daisy loved it, and it was adorbs. It was made from all recycled materials and the flyer said that it was made with tough fabric. Daisy killed the squeaker in five seconds and had the stuffing out of it within an hour because she loved it not wisely, but too well. It really was a well-constructed plush toy. I wish it had lasted a little longer, but it was a huge hit. Hopefully next month’s toy is a little tougher. (Value: $9.50)

[icon name=”icon-asterisk”] Bocce’s Bakery Truffle Macaroni and Cheese Treats — You can only get these on the Bocce’s Bakery website, and at $9.50 they’re a little pricey, but let me say this: These make Daisy’s life worth living apparently. She’ll do anything for one of these suckers. We’ve been having issues with her not taking the “Down” position without a lure, and for one of these, she will hit the floor. Audibly. There are lots of other flavors like “Holiday Feast” and “PB&J.” If part of BarkBox’s mission is to expose pet parents to new, lesser-known products, they’ve done it with these. I may order some for Daisy and for Christmas presents for family pets. Oh, and the ingredients? Turkey bacon, cheese, barley flour, and truffle oil. That’s it. That’s human-quality food, right there! I haven’t tried them, though I will admit to some curiosity. (Value: $9.50)

[icon name=”icon-asterisk”] Etta Says Crunchy Deer Chew — Full Disclosure: Daisy will not be trying this. Because it is a rawhide chew with crumbly bits, I don’t feel really comfortable giving it to her. It’s probably safe, but she has a tendency to wolf her food and puke it all back up, and I’m one of those helicopter dog parents, so we don’t really know how it tastes. (Value: $1.00)

A dog chews on a toy.
Photo Courtesy of BarkBox

[icon name=”icon-asterisk”] N-Bone Pearly Whites — I love my puppers, but she definitely has a problem. That problem is named Serious Dog Breath, and from time to time, her loving attention could knock you out from the smell alone. These little dog bones were mint and vanilla flavored, and while Daisy was hesitant at first, she enjoyed it once she got going. It helped that Daisy loves to chew, so she’s pretty easily satisfied on that front. (Value: $4.00)

[icon name=”icon-asterisk”] Happy Howie’s Turkey Sausage — So these are essentially dried hot dogs. That’s what they look like anyway. Again, they have limited ingredients, so you don’t feel like you’re pumping your dog full of chemicals. The idea is to break them up and give them in small pieces. I had to chop them up with a knife, but they make great training aids. They even got Daisy past the naughty Golden Retriever we see on our walks without losing focus, and for a dog that’s as reactive as Daisy is, that is a huge deal. She would look over her shoulder now and then, but then would snap back to me, on the hunt for more pieces of sausage. I would definitely buy these again, if given the chance. (Value: $3.00)

While I wouldn’t give Daisy everything in the box, the total cost of the box came out to about $27.00, which is ten dollars more than I actually paid for it, so I can’t complain. Like I said before, I wish the toy had been a little more Daisy-resistant, but she definitely had fun with it, and maybe next month’s toy will survive a little longer.

All in all, I’m pleased with my initial BarkBox experience, and am already excited for next month. Daisy is pleased too. I can tell because she thinks that all brown boxes are now magic, and sits whenever I pick up a similarly shaped box, just in case it has food in it. My overall impression is that it’s a pretty good value, especially if you have a little bit of extra money up front to spend, as the shorter subscriptions are more expensive than the longer ones. I love learning about new products, so the novelty of the whole experience absolutely has me sold. We’ll see what comes in the mail next month!

To try Barkbox, go to their website at barkbox.com. You can find coupon codes throughout the internet, including at retailmenot.com, and other deal sites. There are also usually Facebook deals.

*I was not compensated for this review, except in puppy joy. It was excellent, though non-monetary, compensation.

By amandamarieg

Amandamarieg is a lawyer who does not work as a lawyer. She once wrote up a plan to take over the world and turned it in as a paper for a college course. She only received an A-, because she forgot that she would need tech geeks to pull off her scheme.

8 replies on “We Try It: BarkBox”

I know. I wanted to be all “serious investigative journalist” but then she stole the zucchini and ran away. I couldn’t get it together after that. I definitely had to re watch the video about five times last night to check formatting, and every time she heard the squeak, she went on the hunt again.

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