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BarkBox Review

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True to the millennial stereotype, my dog is basically my child. As part of Freyja’s competitive compensation package for the strenuous job of cleaning the kitchen floor and keeping the yard squirrel-free, she receives a monthly BarkBox. Let’s check it out.

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About BarkBox

barkbox review

Barkbox makes your life easier by sending you a monthly box filled with unique, hand-picked items for your dog to enjoy.  All items have been thoroughly tested by the dogs of BarkBox to ensure your dog will rate them four paws up.

The sign-up process collects information about your dog, such as gender, age, size, and allergies so the box can be somewhat customized. They touch on the main allergies like chicken and wheat.  

Each box has a theme, often based on the holiday associated with that month such as Valentine’s Day.  Other themes have included Barkbuster Movie Night, Bark 2 School, and The Best of BarkBox.

Each box contains two toys, two bags of treats, and a mystery item. The surprise items have been an extra snack, dental chew that you stuff with the included toothpaste-like gel, etc.  

Barkbox knows that not all dogs are the same. While my dainty diva enjoys the regular box, you may have a determined destroyer on your hands that would benefit from the Super Chewer box with more durable toys. 

There is also the option to add an extra toy each month or a toys-only box.

Example Box


Each box contains toys, treats, and other items worth a total value of $40. Like most subscription companies, BarkBox offers several tiers based on the number of months you choose to subscribe. For the standard box:

    • 1 month = $35/month
    • 6 months = $25/month
    • 1 year = $20/month

We are on the year plan, which has a shipping charge of $4.99, but with an extra toy ($9) you get “free” shipping. 

The Super Chewer box is available for about $10/mo extra.

Additional discounts may be applied if you pay for the entire 12-month term in advance.  I was offered 5% off to pay for my entire year up-front.

What I Love

    • Quality toys Freyja doesn’t destroy instantly
    • Good variety of plushies, ropes, squeakers, multi-part, and crinkle toys
    • Good value on the 1-year plan
    • Some customization for common allergies
    • Customer Service has been amazing when I’ve needed to talk to them

The Less Desirable

    • Pricing isn’t transparent until you are ready to check out
    • The month-to-month price is high
    • If your dog isn’t destructive, you’ll need a spot to store extra toys or choose a shorter subscription.
    • If your dog goes through toys faster than paper goes through a shredder, even the Super Chewer box may not be an option for you
    • I couldn’t find an easy way to skip a month without talking to customer service


Worth it (for the 12-month plan)! Not only is it a savings over buying toys at the pet store, it saves me money because I’m not buying myself a little treat while I’m out shopping for Freyja.

We get a wider variety of treats throughout the year than I would get if I were doing the shopping. In the 5 months we have gotten BarkBox, we have received beef, lamb, poultry, and pork-based treats.

The toys aren’t available elsewhere. Freyja loves soft plushie toys and everything so far has been right up her alley. BarkBox sent some of the multi-part “hide and seek” style toys that she had never tried before. The crinkly ones are always the favorite! Now I don’t have to worry about Freyja turning my socks into her toys.

Black and white dog holding a pink dog toy

If you’re like me and would rather play with your dog than shop for her, you can sign up here.


If BarkBox isn’t your style, you can try these:

    • Pooch Perks – Offers a very similar box but has more options for customization in products, such as a treats-only box, and more flexibility on the shipping schedule.  The downside is that they want upfront payment for the longer subscription which otherwise would make it BarkBox’s greatest competition.
    • RescueBox – Less expensive than BarkBox’s month-to-month plan, but offers no customization options or discounts for longer subscriptions. This is run by a non-profit and proceeds support rescues and animal-related charities. If your focus is on buying from companies that generously give back and fund the causes you believe in, this is a great choice. Their parent company, Greater Good, has stellar ratings on Charity Navigator so you can trust that the money is used well.

Not in to Commitment?

This Goody Box from Chewy is comes with a couple more toys and is a great buy.  My dog loved the beef jerky toy so much that I had to buy multiple replacements!

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