Almost two years ago we tried and reviewed 7 of the subscription boxes on the market. Since then, we’ve tried boxes from another 6 or 7 companies. We’ve tried a lot of these boxes more than once. Over the last couple of years, we’ve seen about 50 subscription boxes from 14 different companies and I’ve written two comprehensive comparison posts. If that doesn’t make us experts on dog subscription boxes, I don’t know what does.
I have been a BarkBox subscriber for 4 years and have previously found them to be mildly inefficient but the billing is accurate, the toys are cute and the packaging is tidy. However, I recently placed a gift order to BarkBox and things have gone badly. I got a delivery eta of a week out. Package not received 2 weeks later, multiple (5) follow-up emails entirely ignored by BarkBox. Response that finally came cited “mass email” to all subscribers (never received, although I continue to receive lots of sales emails from BarkBox) and “ongoing warehouse inventory”, and hopes that the box will ship in the next week or so. There is no mechanism for expediting support requests, and the front line folks appear to working from scripts intended to appease and retain customers, regardless of whether or not the problem can be addressed.
My Lab/whippet mixed pup Nora (45 pounds, 8 years) rarely cares for any kind of traditional dog toy. She’s intimidated by toys that squeak, and toys that hit the floor with a loud thud. She doesn’t play fetch unless other dogs are around. However, she does take to treats meant for chewing. After trying bully sticks (hurt her gums), antlers (made a terrible sound against her teeth), and others, I came across the Himalayan Dog Chew: a softer chew made from yak and cow milk. It’s still tough enough that it lasts her a few days of on and off chewing but soft enough that I’m not worried it’ll hurt her mouth. Once the chew reaches the last nubbin—which you don’t want your dog to swallow whole—you can briefly pop it into the microwave to soften it into a cheesy treat.
BarkBox is a monthly subscription box with special toys and treats for your dog! Every box is designed to entertain and bring joy to your pup. With a new theme every month, BarkBox includes toys, treats and chews. Select from our 12 month, 6 month or 1 month subscriptions with the option to cancel your subscription plan length renewal at any time. Visit our website today to learn more about our service and products!
But the data also shows a wide range. The lower bound is under $15, while the upper bound is over $35. This means there is scope for BarkBox to “complicate” their pricing. Consumer products try and keep pricing simple to reduce the friction in the sign-up. This often leads to them leaving money on the table. Here, BarkBox has options at both the premium level and the lower priced level:
I'm actually pretty sure that BarkBox charged me for a box that I haven't received...oh my, the thought of trying to get that refunded makes me sigh. I've tried the cute route, I might need to be a little more adult about this communication. For my pups, I'm going to try another toy delivery service, or simply buy toys through Chewy or hey, even the local pet supply store! Novel idea! Support local businesses!
Thank you for your review Jack and we're so happy to have you in the pack! :) I did want to clarify that you can cancel anytime. The online cancelation feature works on cancelation for renewal so pupscribers who don't want to be auto renewed can take care of that. However you can cancel anytime by emailing our support team at Happy@barkbox.com If you need any assistance you can always email me personally at Lindz@barkbox.com