I've always wanted to try a subscription for my pups but I'm a bit ashamed that this was my first experience. BarkBox was good but had major hits and misses. I have giant, playful, strong dogs and though this was indicated, I don't feel as though any size consideration is evaluated when selecting toys for the boxes. I do like that they always came with two toys because it meant each dog had 15 minutes of play time before I had to wrestle their jaws open to dig out the stuffing and bits of squeakers they were about to ingest. The treats have been great! They especially loved the apple cider treats that started to ferment when left in a cookie jar and made all their other treats reek of beer. As a consumer that willingly signed up for the box and entered my debit card information freely, I should have read more in-depth. I did not know that when you terminate your subscription that you will continue to be charged until you reach the year mark of signing up. For me it meant 9 more months of money that was to be taken out of my account had I not caught it. I like true month to month boxes where a cancellation is immediate and I wish they had made their rather off-kilter ways of charging and processing more visible. I can think of some major changes that they could make but ultimately some of the blame rests on me for not reading better. I know my pups will be sad as they've grown accustomed to their box but I can buy more durable and healthy big dog treats for just a little more money and I know it would be more worth it.
I was so excited to love BarkBox. First box, first toy, my pup pops the seam in less then 5 minutes (tug o' war with another dog). I request a replacement and was told "Not to worry, I am going to go ahead and send you out that replacement! I went ahead and marked you down for our more durable plush option at no extra cost, since you said she loves her plush toys. I know you said you wanted to test out a puzzle toy so I am going to go ahead and send you one right now:) Please tell Tonks it should arrive within 3-5 business days!"
Emmy + Tico: I adopted Tico from the Brooklyn Animal Care & Control shelter last year, and he's 45 pounds and about 5 years old. According to his DNA test — because of course I needed to know — he's a pit bull mix and potentially part rat terrier! Tico is a medium- to high-energy dog, and the sweetest pup in all the land; he was even tasked with being a "greeter dog" during his stint at the shelter, and made new dogs feel comfortable. 😭
Emmy dislikes: All the toys were stuffed, which means I knew they'd be dead meat within hours. BUT thats not Barkbox's fault, it's mine — I didn't realize that you can upgrade to a "heavy chewer" box with toys of varying durability for free, or step it up a notch and order a "super chewer" version of the Barkbox for an additional $8–$10 a month, depending on your subscription plan, with extra-durable toys that have been tested on freakin' WOLVES. Regardless, I don't mind giving Tico stuffed toys every so often, because he has a lot of seemingly satisfying fun entertaining himself by pulling them apart, and he's not the kind of dog who eats non-edible things (thank god).
KONG’s exclusive, super-bouncy natural rubber compound is absolutely irresistible to most dogs. We carry a wide selection of the finest KONG toys, from the KONG Original with Stuff'n Paste to tossable, tuggable Wubbas, to provide any dog with the safest, most satisfying chewing and playing experiences. In addition to KONGs, we have other tough toys made specifically for aggressive chewers. Constructed of ultra-durable, near-indestructible materials, these toys are built to last more than a few seconds.
I was dubious that we really needed yet another plush toy, but after Gus (Chihuahua-poodle mix, 18 pounds, 18 months) loved playing with the Outward Hound Hide A Squirrel at a friend’s place, I had to get one. He typically has trouble paying attention to squeaky toys for more than a few minutes at a time, but the more challenging setup of three squeaky squirrels in a tree-trunk-shaped pouch will keep him going for hours. He fishes squirrels out, then runs around like crazy with whichever one is left in his mouth last. I can send the next one sailing the moment he’s back with the first, making it easy to tire him out. He also loves to chew on and shake the tree stump. The pieces are relatively tough too: After three months of near-daily playing, I have yet to do any mending to sew up holes (your mileage may vary—it’s still a plush toy).
The BarkBox Dog Parent Survey was conducted by Kelton Global, a leading global insights research firm, between October 28th and November 4th, 2016 among 1,006 nationally representative Americans with dogs ages 18 and over, using an e-mail invitation and an online survey. Quotas are set to ensure a reliable representation of the U.S. population 18 and over.