The subscription service has already touted itself as an experience for dogs and their owners, with a new theme to each month’s arrival. Past themes have tapped into holidays (Halloween is a popular one), pop culture (including a whole box dedicated to the ’90s), and other creative ventures that often involve a good pun (including “Secrets of the Rainfurrest”). Many BarkBox subscribers also share these experiences via social media through “unboxing” videos on Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube.
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!"
But as much as this is a place for dogs, it is clearly also meant to be a space for their human companions to enjoy well, tapping into the documented trend among consumers looking to spend more on experiences—especially those that photograph for Instagram well—these days. The park will be putting on a number of events, at least twice weekly, including “Downward Dog Yoga” and “Okto-Bark-Fest.” The park will also host some of Bark’s existing programming already held routinely in other cities, such as the Open Bark Night comedy show.
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When we went to meet (and ultimately take home) our rescue mini-schnauzer mix Reggie a year and a half ago, we took four things with us: a collar and leash, a small plush hedgehog, and this weblike rubber ball. The plush hedgehog is now a flat hedgehog — like most dogs, Reggie takes great pride in disemboweling his stuffed toys — and the leash and collar are a little worse for wear, but the Hol-ee Roller rubber ball is still going strong. In fact, it looks pretty much new.
The study also polled dog people about taking photos of their pup, and found that 20 percent of the pictures they take on their phone are of their dog – more than trips or vacations (15%), themselves (11%) or food (6%). In fact, more than two in five (42%) dog people have made a photo of their dog the feature photo on their phone or computer desktop.