Nothing Gets My Picky Dog Peanut's Tail Wagging Like Her Monthly BarkBox

We're both hooked after testing out the service for several months.

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barkbox review


  • Limited-edition and exclusive items

  • Wide array of toys, treats, and chews

  • Option to add extra items to your box

  • All-natural treats with healthy ingredients

  • Feedback process helps ensure your pet only gets items they’ll love

  • Amazing customer service dedicated to giving every pup a good experience

  • Shipping isn’t included in subscription price

  • Can’t choose the items in each month’s box

Bottom Line

After testing BarkBox for a few months, I plan to stay a loyal subscriber. The peace of mind that comes with stellar customer service and all-natural treats makes it the best option for both me and Peanut (although I think she’d like it if I added an extra treat to her box each month!). BarkBox even sent Peanut a special birthday gift: a precious stuffed piñata toy that she absolutely loves. The subscription is one of the best ways to spoil your pup each month without breaking the bank, and I really respect BarkBox as a company, too.



barkbox review


BarkBox has been delivering dog treats and one-of-a-kind toys to dogs and their owners since 2012. With more than 2.3 million active subscribers, it’s one of the country’s leading dog subscription services. BarkBox is highly customizable, letting you go well beyond merely adjusting your box for your dog’s size and making it easy to meet your pet’s needs and preferences. As someone who thrives on spoiling my little rescue pup, Peanut, I wanted to try BarkBox out for her. Spoiler alert: Now that we’ve tried it, we’ll definitely be subscribers for good.

How I Tested BarkBox

I’ve been ordering BarkBox for several months now. Peanut can be a bit, well, picky, so I wanted to see how customizable the box could be and if BarkBox’s customer service lives up to its stellar reputation. 

To review BarkBox, I considered its price point, the quality of the products it provided, and its customization options, especially its assortment of available add-ons. I also gave feedback on the initial boxes to see if BarkBox would send toys and dog treats that matched Peanut’s preferences even better later on.

barkbox subscription

Kaitlin Marks / The Spruce Pets

How Does BarkBox Work?

BarkBox is a monthly subscription box packed with goodies for your pup. When you subscribe, you’ll receive exclusive toys, treats, and more, all tailored specifically to your dog. Every box contains two plush toys and two bags of treats and chews and comes with a 100-percent happiness guarantee. You can customize your box to your pet’s needs, including with allergy-safe treats and specific types of toys. Shipping isn’t included, but if you add an additional toy or treat to your plan, you’ll unlock free shipping. That’s what I went with for Peanut since I’d rather pay for extra goodies than shipping.

While you don’t get to choose the theme of your BarkBox each month, you can pick add-ons like extra toys and treats. After every box you receive, you’ll have the opportunity to rate its items and give detailed feedback, which BarkBox will use to tailor the toys and treats it sends your dog. If your pup didn’t enjoy a toy or treat, the BarkBox team promises to make things right, whether that’s by providing a replacement or a refund.

Besides its regular box, BarkBox also offers a Super Chewer subscription, which supplies you with extra-tough toys developed for dogs who chew longer and play harder. Peanut is really gentle with her toys, but when I originally ordered a BarkBox for her, I accidentally ordered the Super Chewer version. When I switched my plan the next month and gave feedback on my box, I noted my mistake, and though they absolutely didn’t have to, BarkBox’s customer service team sent over an adorable crinkly ice cream sandwich plush to hold Peanut over until her next box. I was beyond impressed with this level of care.

How Much Is BarkBox?

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Starting at $22 per month;

The standard BarkBox plan costs $35 for a month-to-month subscription, $26 per month if you commit to a six-month plan, and $22 per month for a 12-month plan. Shipping is extra on all plans. I picked a six-month subscription, but I added an extra toy for Peanut, so my subscription came out to $35 per month. (I’m definitely guilty of purchasing add-ons for her box on more than one occasion.)

The Super Chewer subscription is a bit pricier than the standard BarkBox since its toys are made of different materials and are built to withstand even the toughest chewers. A month-to-month Super Chewer plan is $45, a six-month plan is $35, and a 12-month plan is $30. Again, shipping is extra.

Overall, I definitely think a BarkBox subscription is worth the cost. Purchasing individual dog toys and bags of treats can be expensive. Getting five toys and bags of treats at a pet store typically costs me around $40 or more, so it’s a great value. Even better, the quality of the products is amazing. BarkBox creates products I trust, so I have peace of mind feeding Peanut the treats and letting her run wild with her new toys every month.

Delivery and Packaging

While testing BarkBox over the last several months, my order almost always arrived on time. (It was delayed only once.) I liked the convenience of having the plan set up and knowing that Peanut’s box would arrive every month without any extra effort on my part. I could go into my account and add extra toys or treats to my box at any point before it shipped, and the cost of any additional items I chose was applied only to that box and not to subsequent boxes, too.

barkbox packaging

Kaitlin Marks / The Spruce Pets

Typically, my BarkBox orders arrived looking a little beat-up, but while the boxes were a bit damaged, everything in them was well packaged. There isn’t a ton of extra packaging, and I could recycle the cardboard box and paper tags on the toys.

I appreciate how much attention to detail BarkBox puts into the tags, bags, and directions for every item. For example, each bag of treats features a few facts about a BARK team member’s pup who “approved” the treats, which is adorable. Every box includes an insert listing all of the items in that month’s theme, along with fun games and activities for you and your dog. In my “Barkbuster Movie Night”-themed box, the company suggested snuggling up with Peanut and some popcorn for a movie and provided a clapboard I could personalize and use to take a photo of Peanut as a director. Past activities have included lick mat recipes, new ways to play fetch, and more.

What Comes in a BarkBox?

The quality of the BarkBox collection is really my (and Peanut’s!) favorite part of the subscription. Even the toys in the regular non-Super Chewer subscription are much more durable than toys I’ve purchased at the pet store. I haven’t had to throw any of them out, even though Peanut plays with them all the time. The quality isn’t just there for me, though. Peanut constantly reaches for her BarkBox toys over the others in her toy bin, especially the ham and cheese from a Lunchables-inspired toy, and the fish from a fish-and-pelican set.

All of the toys typically include a tag with instructions and details, which are especially helpful for the toys you can hide treats inside. Some toys, like a freezable one that Peanut received, also come with guides on how you can make the toy more engaging. Any time I add extra toys or treats to Peanut’s order, they’re always worth the money. The box is a true delight each month, and I always look forward to seeing what the team will come up with next.

barkbox products

Kaitlin Marks / The Spruce Pets

The treats, even more than the toys, are Peanut’s favorite part of the box, and I adore their quality. They’re always made with whole ingredients, and there’s usually a mix of shapes, sizes, and textures to keep Peanut on her toes. One box included a pumpkin and honey chew, soft-baked bacon and oatmeal treats, and lamb jerky bars. All of the treats are made in the USA, and every bag is pup-approved by a BarkBox team member’s dog.

Who Is BarkBox Best For?

If you’re like me and have an Instagram feed that’s flooded with ads for dog supplies, you’re a perfect candidate for BarkBox. It’s a wonderful service for dog parents who love spoiling their pups. If you like to always have a selection of new toys and treats on hand, BarkBox gives your pet quality products without a steep price tag. And for anyone whose dog tends to quickly destroy their toys, the Super Chewer box is a phenomenal option that thousands of reviewers agree lives up to the hype.

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Starting at $22 per month;

  • Are Dog Toys and Treats Cheaper With a Subscription?

    Dog toys and treats are often more affordable with a subscription. For example, at Target, BARK brand toys range from about $8 to $16, meaning that purchasing two will cost roughly the same as a subscription box.

  • What If Your Dog Doesn’t Like the Treats in a Dog Subscription Box?

    Different dog subscription boxes have different policies on this issue, but if your pup doesn’t like the treats in a BarkBox order, you can reach out to the customer service team for replacements or a refund. The company has a 100-percent happiness guarantee and wants your dog to enjoy every item they receive.

  • Do Dog Subscription Boxes Have Healthy Treats?

    BarkBox offers healthy treats produced in the United States and Canada, all made without wheat, corn, soy, or fillers. They’re often made with ingredients like chicken, apples, pumpkin, and oatmeal.

  • Are There Dog Subscription Boxes for Aggressive Chewers?

    Yes. BarkBox’s Super Chewer box is just one option, sending you toys that are built to last. The toys are highly durable and meant to withstand tough chewers, and the company promises to replace damaged toys if they don’t work for your pet.


  • Base price $22/month
  • Free shipping? No
  • Delivery frequency Monthly
  • No. of items per shipment 5 (2 toys, 2 bags of treats, 1 chew)
  • Types of products Toys, treats, and chews