November 22, 2018 7:42 PM   Subscribe

I'm interested in barkbox but I'm finding it hard to find non-sponsored reviews. If you've tried it, I'd like to know why it did or didn't work for you. I'm aware of review sites for subscription boxes, but I'm looking for additional opinions.
posted by Aranquis to Pets & Animals (14 answers total)
We get it for our pup. We do it mostly because the toys seem to really make our pup happy. The treats are not very good and we often give them away, though. It's not really worth the money, but letting her open her own mail gives *us* a lot of joy too.

As I reflect on the answer I'm typing, I realize that it's similar in some ways to buying lottery tickets. You know that it's not worth the money, but there are weird intangible reasons to keep doing it anyway. And at least your dog gets some pretty ok toys in the bargain.
posted by dbx at 8:09 PM on November 22, 2018 [2 favorites]

What worked:

- the quality of the products was really high.
- I discovered some new treats my dog likes.

What didn’t work:

- getting it every month was just too much. My dog is not super into toys, too.
- every month, there’d be at least one thing my dog wasn’t interested in, so I’d get kind of a pileup of stuff I had no use for.
- I tend to think lots of dogs are creatures of habit. They want the chews/treats/toys they like. But if your dog is new to you, I do think it could be a good way to learn what they like.
posted by lunasol at 8:12 PM on November 22, 2018 [2 favorites]

It has been working well for us. The toys are excellent and are the real value in my opinion. The treats are a bit hit and miss; I think of them more as a bonus but the toys are why we keep the subscription.
posted by Dip Flash at 8:21 PM on November 22, 2018

Our pups really love the toys and they definitely pay more attention to the new ones each month. Sometimes the toys are themed in ways that we don’t find aesthetically pleasing so we keep a bag of rejected toys and most of the treats to drop off at our local shelter every few months. I do wish there was an option for a toys-only subscription.
posted by charmcityblues at 8:37 PM on November 22, 2018

I love barkbox! I love the toys--they're really high quality, they're adorable, and they last longer than just about any other toys we get. The treats are good, too! It's really nice knowing I get a supply sent to me, without me having to do anything.

Highly recommend!
posted by meese at 8:56 PM on November 22, 2018

We love barkbox - the themes are a delight, the treats are great, and the toys are clever and well-made - but I feel like the subjective value depends a LOT on your dog’s likes and dislikes and general orientation toward these things. Even sponsored reviews do have accurate photos of what’s in a box - so maybe reviewing some of the past boxes would help you decide whether the contents are with it to you?
posted by mosst at 10:36 PM on November 22, 2018

My dog is 30 lbs and 8 months old, and he's loved almost everything from BarkBox. The toys are cute, and there has only been 1 toy out of the 4 boxes so far that he wasn't into. The treats are a bit more hit and miss, I would say that 80% of them are great, but few have given his gas or he hasn't liked. Overall I would recommend it, especially because I live in an area with few pet supply options.
posted by foxonisland at 11:29 PM on November 22, 2018

My sister's dog adores it so much that now whenever they get a box she freaks out thinking it's a BarkBox and is disappointed when it's, like, diapers
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 1:33 AM on November 23, 2018 [9 favorites]

I've had Barkbox for 2ish years. I love it. The themes and curation are hilarious, the toys are very high quality and often very cute, and my dogs have always enjoyed the treats. My only "issue" is that I have 3 dogs, and they only send 2 toys and 1 or 2 chews so they only get those every other month. It works out to reduce clutter, though.
posted by Fig at 5:20 AM on November 23, 2018

I was an early Barkbox subscriber, back before the boxes were themed, before they had a Barkbox brand, and when it cost $11 a box. It was an excellent deal and just perfect for me as a first time dog owner. We received such a wide variety of toys and treats that I was able to get a good idea of the kind of stuff my dog liked. Some of the toys we got years ago are still favorites today (albeit in a mostly destroyed, unrecognizable state), and I know that he prefers chewy meaty treats over crunchy treats, and trachea sections over cow pizzle. I noticed as the boxes started to become themed that the toy styles started to get repetitive, and we just had way more treats than my dog could ever manage to eat, so I unsubscribed.

I have friends who get Barkbox today and the toys are super cute and seem high quality, but they're not generally the kind of toys my dog prefers (and it's not the deal it used to be and I am very cheap) and I don't see myself ever resubscribing.

That said, I think I probably would recommend a few months subscription to a new dog owner or puppy owner. It's nice to get a variety of stuff and let your dog try on a few ways to dog.
posted by phunniemee at 5:55 AM on November 23, 2018

Our dog (11 month old Olde English Bulldogge) gets the Super Chewer variation, and it is a highlight of our month. She knows when her box comes in the mail and gets very excited about it. We also do some of the fluffy BarkShop toys as kind of one-off purchases and they have all held up very well. We find it worth the purchase on general - the toys are of good quality, she loves the chews, and the treats are well-used.
posted by honeybee413 at 9:23 AM on November 23, 2018

We’ne gotten a box every 3 months for our 7 month old lab. It’s nice to get new toys & treats we otherwise wouldn’t think of. There’s a lot of good stuff in them. But every month would be way too much!
posted by Hello, Revelers! I am Captain Lavender! at 10:34 AM on November 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

We split a box between our two puppers. They LOOOOOOOOOVE it, and because one is super food motivated and one is super toy motivated, it works out pretty well. The only treats I ever have to buy now are hard, long-lasting chews (which never come in our box), and liver treats (which we rarely get in the box, and use as training treats so go through faster). Our young puppy is a destroyer, and the BarkBox toys definitely take her longer to shred than other soft toys, and some of them are even made to be destroyed (with a cute “second” toy inside the first).

We do have quite a ridiculous number of toys now (since we’ve been subscribers since shortly after we got our first dog which was years ago), but we do a cull of the neglected ones every so often and the local rescues are happy to receive castoffs.
posted by Dorinda at 12:23 PM on November 23, 2018

I love it! My dog destroys toys, so it's nice to have new ones show up every month. And I never have to go buy treats any more! (Mine also now thinks that all boxes are for him, so there's that....)
posted by Weeping_angel at 1:52 PM on November 23, 2018

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