If you are looking to spoil your pet but do not have time to run out to the pet store for new toys and treats each month, you may have considered a monthly subscription box service and come across the name BarkBox.
BarkBox allows you to customize your subscription to your pet. For example, if your dog has allergies or needs heavy-duty chew toys, BarkBox can recommend specific subscriptions to leave you and your pup happy. BarkBox also offers themed packages like the New York kit that includes treats and chews that pay homage to the Big Apple, such as a Statue of Liberty toy.
Therefore, BarkBox provides a range of treats, rope toys, chewables, and plushies without necessitating a run to the pet shop. This option can be more convenient and practical for families already busy or trying to practice social distancing due to the ongoing COVID pandemic.
However, you must also consider the BarkBox cost—like any subscription service—you will pay a premium to have treats and toys delivered to your doorstep. Luckily, BarkBox offers some discounts, particularly if you invest in a long-term subscription plan.
In this BarkBox review, we will answer questions such as:
- How does BarkBox work?
- How much does BarkBox cost per month?
- What treats and toys come in a typical dog subscription box?
- Are BarkBox Treats healthy?
- Do the subscription boxes have good customer reviews?
- Does the company have good customer service, and is it easy to cancel your account?
All these answers will help you decide on the most critical question: is BarkBox really worth it for my dog and me?
Let’s first review how this monthly subscription box service works.
What Is BarkBox?
BarkBox ships you a monthly subscription box filled with toys and treats. With BarkBox, you will generally know what to expect each month, but the exact contents will be a surprise.
It’s a good service for dogs who get tired of the same treats or tear through toys and need replacements. With BarkBox, you can count on getting various cute new toys and sample treats made with beef, chicken, and poultry.
Customers always receive two toys and two bags of treats, plus a chew toy each month. Like the New York box mentioned earlier, each box usually follows a theme, such as “The Good, The Bad, and The Pugly,” or “Chewrassic Bark,” with toys and treats to match the theme. Chewrassic Bark, for example, includes toys like a plush dino hatchling, a triceratops rope toy, and a “T-Rex” bone chew toy.
Dogs and their humans consistently review BarkBox positively in terms of quality and customer support.
You may also customize your BarkBox subscription to get the best dog treats for your pet. If your dog can’t eat certain foods, you can ask that your box contains allergy-friendly foods. If your dog is tough on toys, you can upgrade to the Super Chewer Box subscription.
Here’s a quick overview of what BarkBox brings to the table:
Ready to get started?
Let’s review your subscription options next.
How Does BarkBox Work?
BarkBox is a monthly subscription service that sends some of the best dog toys and treats to your door every month.
BarkBox offers various subscription plans. You may order a one-time box, or you can sign up for a 6-month subscription or a 12-month subscription. Keep in mind that BarkBox offers discounts if you order a multiple-month plan. It is also worth noting that after you sign up, your subscription will automatically renew until you contact BarkBox to discontinue. We will talk more about that in a moment.
When pet parents sign up for a BarkBox subscription, they first need to account for their dog’s size. BarkBox has subscription options for small (under 20 pounds), medium (20 to 50 pounds), and large (50 pounds or more) dogs. This information ensures your subscription box contains treats and toys appropriate for your pet’s size.
BarkBox bills you on the third of each month and ships on the 15th. The company includes free shipping in the price for all orders delivered within the continental United States.
You may choose to add an extra toy to your monthly BarkBox subscription box when you sign up. A subscriber may also customize an order to include hypoallergenic dog treats if your dog cannot eat beef, chicken, or turkey.
Pet owners may also sign up for the Super Chewer BarkBox plan that includes extra-rugged chew toys that can stand up to rigorous enjoyment.
So, what exactly is in each shipment?
What’s Inside Each Box?
The basic dog subscription box includes two bags of all-natural dog treats, two toys, and a chew toy.
As previously noted, most boxes follow a theme. For example, the New York box contains crunchy fish-flavored treats in a nod to the city’s location on the Atlantic coast.
Dogs more interested in the Middle Ages than in New York might prefer the box with the cute name “Knights of the Hound Table,” which comes with a fuzzy squirrel squire and a tug toy resembling a medieval flail.
You may visit the BarkBox monthly themes web page to get a peek at what dogs can expect for Lick or Treat, Dogs-giving, and other times of the year.
BarkBox does a good job providing quality goodies for your dog compared to what you would find in a pet store, including their Super Chewer options. Next, we’ll look at specifics and consider some BarkBox reviews to decide if they are worth the BarkBox cost.
Are the Treats Healthy?
Each BarkBox contains two bags of all-natural and high-quality treats. The BarkBox team works to send your pup natural foods made with beef, chicken, and other protein sources rather than wheat, soy, corn, and other filler.
The company also tries to source organic treats whenever possible. Keep an eye on BarkBox’s offerings as it works to move toward nibbles that are organic and single-source as well.
Remember to review your order when you sign up if your dog has any allergies. You may be able to request a BarkBox subscription that fits your dog’s unique dietary needs. All food is made in the USA and Canada, though chews come from around the world.
As part of their customer service agreement, the BarkBox team promises that they have tested all items on their own pets and that they would not give your pup something that their own do not enjoy.
Speaking of customer service, if your dog does not like the contents of the pack, you may request a free replacement item. On the other hand, if the Banquet Feast treats from the Knights of the Hound Table box or the deer chew from the New York box were a hit, you can re-order those favorites again.
Are the Toys High-Quality?
While BarkBox’s dog treats are made in the USA and Canada, the company’s toys come from all over the world.
BarkBox’s dog toys generally receive high marks in customer reviews. One review remarked that some chew toys have only one hole, which can cause a pup to get his tongue stuck inside, but overall reviews were positive. People appreciated that the toys were durable and followed cute themes that pet parents enjoy.
Keep in mind that if you are unhappy with an item, you can replace it by contacting the BarkBox customer service team, also known as the Happy Team. BarkBox reviews usually give the company high marks for friendly, efficient customer service.
RELATED READING: BarkBox vs PupBox
You may also contact the Happy customer service team once you have enrolled if you decide to upgrade to the Super Chewer plan. Super Chewer subscriptions guarantee that your dogs receive incredibly hardy toys that can stand up to vigorous use.
According to one online review, BarkBox was able to satisfy one dog who, according to his parent, could destroy just about anything. Another review noted that BarkBox’s heavy-duty items are tested on wolves before being shipped to your dog.
Price: How Much Does It Cost?
BarkBox subscription boxes can be cheaper than purchasing each item individually from a pet store. Also, the convenience of the package arriving at your doorstep each month without having to take any trips to the store is worth its weight in gold. Plus, customers can save more money per month if they commit to one of the company’s long-term subscriptions.
BarkBox also periodically offers savings, especially on a customer’s first box. Check out some recent BarkBox reviews, where many a reviewer has dropped a coupon code that readers can enter to lower the price, especially for your initial box.
Before adding any extras, you can expect the following in your box every month:
- Two bags of treats
- Two toys
- One chew toy
If you decide to buy month-to-month, your BarkBox pack will cost $29 or $39 if you enroll in the Super Chewer plan. One month of BarkBox may be a good purchase if you are buying a gift, trying to save money, or wondering if BarkBox is really worth it.
However, you will spend less per month if you order a 6-month or 12-month plan instead of purchasing each box one month at a time.
These packs start at $25 and include the same goodies as the month-to-month subscription, but you start saving money long-term. Like the other plans, you can upgrade your kit to have an extra toy or extra-durable toys.
The 12-month subscription offers the lowest price at $22 per month.
If you are interested in this low per-month price but are not sure if your dog needs all the goodies a 12-month subscription provides, keep in mind that you may share your subscription with another dog. Simply contact BarkBox customer support and let them know you would like to send a box from your account as a gift to another dog in your life.
You may upgrade your dogs’ account to receive an extra toy per month in your box or to make sure your toys can stand up to rigorous chewing. Check the Barkbox website for price information related to each monthly plan.
Other Price Information
Shipping is included in the subscription price for customers in the continental United States. Alaskan and Hawaiian dogs are charged an extra $5 to cover shipping.
Customers can receive a free box for each new subscriber they refer to BarkBox. If you are looking to save money, scour some recent reviews for an active promo code readers can use to drop the price, especially for your first box.
One recent review also pointed out that, when you buy a box from the company, BarkBox will send 10% of their profits to one of more than 3,000 shelters and rescue organizations they help support. That means your box will both delight your dog and help homeless dogs around the country!
Can You Cancel Your BarkBox at Any Time?
The short answer is yes, but there is a catch.
The long answer, as one online review pointed out, is that BarkBox is a subscription service. That means that even if you sign up for a single month of service, you are considered enrolled in the program.
Once you are enrolled, BarkBox will continue to send your dog goodie baskets until you actively take steps to cancel your subscription. If you signed up for one box, that subscription would continue to renew month by month. Furthermore, you will pay the highest per-month rate even if you get a box delivered for six or twelve months.
Therefore, if you do not want any surprises, you must cancel before the third of the month, when they process the next round of billing.
This caveat also applies to longer-term subscriptions. The 6- and 12-month plans also renew automatically. This next advice probably goes without saying, but if you sign up for a more extended subscription to take advantage of the lower cost, you are committed to paying for the full term; you will not be able to back out after a month or two.
However, reviews also noted that BarkBox’s customer service is friendly and helpful, so once you decide to cancel your renewal, it is easy to do. Just keep in mind that you will continue to receive shipments for the remainder of your current subscription; the cancellation will not take effect until it runs out.
If you are still receiving boxes that you do not want, you can always contact BarkBox’s Happy Team to redirect them to a granddog, friend, or other beloved pet in your life.
Review Summary: Should Your Dog Join?
BarkBox offers cute toys and dog-approved treats, and pet parents are likely to love the fun, often seasonal, themes. The company provides helpful customer support, and reviews indicate that customers are generally satisfied with their boxes.
BarkBox also wins points for business ethics. The company prioritizes organic and natural treats, supports products made in America and Canada, and donates ten% of its profits to charities that care for homeless pets.
Customers may personalize their orders to suit their dogs’ tastes and dietary restrictions. If your dog is sensitive to beef products, BarkBox can send you food made with chicken, pork, poultry, or fish. On the other hand, if your dog especially loved some of the contents of a previous box, you can ask for their favorites again.
Orders are sized to fit small, medium, or large breeds, and customers can pay a little more to make sure each box comes with extra tough toys that were tested on wolves before they arrive at your door.
Perhaps the biggest knock on BarkBox is that, as a subscription-based service, customers must actively take steps to cancel their order before it renews automatically, even if they only purchased a single month’s supply. However, once pet parents know to take this step, BarkBox’s customer support is easy to contact.
You must also consider whether BarkBox fits in your family’s budget. At $21 per month, a yearly subscription costs $252 before any “pupgrades.” However, you can always send a box to a friend or family member as a gift, which might make the price more palatable.
With the basic plan, you can expect two treat bags, a pair of toys, and an extra chew toy every month, so customers do get a fair bit for their money.
BarkBox’s offerings are high-quality, and it is cheaper to buy a subscription than to purchase the same items individually at the pet store.
Overall, if you have a busy family with multiple dogs or a single dog that tears through plushies quickly, BarkBox can be a smart investment. The company provides tasty food, enticing chews, and fun toys, always with a whimsical theme.
If you enjoy subscription services and think it is time your pup got their own monthly delivery, BarkBox is a great option: