For $20 a month, dog owners get a box of predominantly Bark-branded toys, treats and chews. Boxes are arranged around a theme, which run through the choice of treats, toys and package inserts. This month's holiday-themed box had Howliday Spectacular Dancer tug toys and Holly, Jolly, and Gabe squeakers. The boxes have cartoons to entertain pet parents, as well as an insert with a number they can text to buy their favorite items.
The first BarkPark is scheduled to open on September 8 in Nashville, Tenn. It will be open daily between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. through November. The BarkPark will encompass a landscaped green space designed for dogs to run around as well as access to plenty of Bark-branded toys and treats. (Bark currently produces more than 430 new toys each year.) The park is promised to be cleaned regularly, and there will be BarkPark “hosts” who are also trained professionals to monitor dog play and ensure safety for all attendees.
Play a game of tug-of-war with your best friend when you throw a rope toy at his or her feet. With a large selection, featuring Multipet and Rascals® brands and styles ranging from simple woven-cotton rope toys with large knots on either end, to exciting figure 8s and ropes with three knots, your dog will want to play with you for hours. As an added bonus, chewing on rope toys helps keep your canine's gums and teeth clean and healthy.
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Pup-people with questions about BarkBox can now choose to privately and playfully interact with a dog (in lieu of a human) via direct messages on Twitter, and get information via a series of awesomely punny puppy questions that BarkBox built using Reply.ai. BarkBox’s chatbot (or dog bot) is as quirky as you’d imagine. It answers frequently asked questions and helps customers find the right BarkBox for their dogs by guiding them through some tail-waggingly fun questions. If the dog bot can’t fetch an answer, Zendesk Message detects this and hands the question off to a trained BarkBox support agent to resolve.
Playtime is your pup’s favorite time. Your dog needs play for his overall health and happiness. Dogs are pack animals, requiring physical play with you and other dogs. One of the most important benefits of doggie play is that it’s a bonding opportunity for you and your canine companion. Another benefit of pup play is exercise. Dogs require exercise – whether it’s walking or running – to stay in physical shape. Staying physically active can keep your dog from gaining weight, and the pressure that puts on puppy joints at bay.
Now here’s the thing with the box. It obviously had a theme, but there was nothing in the box talking about the theme. While I know the box is for the dog, it would be nice to have a card describing why they paired all those items together (and maybe describing what makes it a good item for your puppers). I also had no idea which toy was the premium toy was until I researched it online.
The StarMark Bob-A-Lot treat-dispensing toy is the perfect solution if you're looking for a toy that exercises and feeds your dog at the same time. With a 3-cup capacity, you can fill this toy with your dog's kibble or a handful of his favorite treats to motivate him to keep playing with the toy until it is completely empty. Plus, adjustable openings on the top and bottom of the toy allow you to customize the level of difficulty to extend each play session to the max.
While the Nashville BarkPark is initially only a pop-up venture for now, BarkBox has ambitions to open more locations nationwide in the future. BarkPark also serves as an experimental retail channel for Bark. It follows the brand’s launch in more than 1,800 Target stores nationwide last August, followed up by Urban Outfitters earlier this month. Bark plans to announce more retail partners soon.
What comes each month seems to be tied into a holiday or time of year. For example, the BarkBox my dog received last week related to the Chinese New Year and contained treats like "Chompsticks" and a squeaker toy of a stuffed dragon. There are usually at least 2 themed toys, 2 themed smaller packages of treats, and at least 1 generic treat like a chew bone. The treats are marketed as "healthy snacks" like fruit chews and dried salmon. (If you get dried salmon, watch out. It smells! My dog loved it, however.) In addition to treats and toys, dog-related items may be included. We received a small treat jar and a water bottle to use when out walking.
Many of your dog's toys should be interactive. Interactive play is very important for your dog because he needs active "people time." By focusing on a specific task, like repeatedly returning a ball, Kong® or Frisbee ®, or playing "hide-and-seek" with treats or toys, your dog can expend pent-up mental and physical energy in a limited amount of time and space. This greatly reduces stress due to confinement, isolation and/or boredom. For young, high-energy and untrained dogs, interactive play also offers an opportunity for socialization and helps them learn about appropriate and inappropriate behavior, such as jumping up or being mouthy.
Avoid or alter any toys that aren't "dog-proof" by removing ribbons, strings, eyes or other parts that could be chewed off and ingested. Discard toys when they start to break into pieces or are torn. Check labels on stuffed toys to see that they are labeled as safe for children under three years of age and that they don't contain any dangerous fillings. Problem fillings include nutshells and polystyrene beads, but even "safe" stuffings aren't truly digestible. Remember that soft toys are not indestructible, but some are sturdier than others. Soft toys should be machine washable.
I have been subscribing to BarkBox for about a year after we got our new puppy and we couldn't be happier! Every month we receive the best treats and toys and Jerry is always so excited! Additionally, I love how they reach out about your experience and what works and what isn't. I also appreciate the options to add, upgrade or change items based on your dog's needs/wants, This has been a great experience for us and our pup and we don't have to leave the house! It's like Christmas once a month for our pup! :)
When I contacted customer service the person I was chatting with made me feel like I was incompetent and that it was my own fault for not understanding and reading the very fine print that was smaller than the other wording at the bottom of the page, so needless to say I was very upset. I was not offered a refund and basically, they told me to just deal with it. So I canceled my credit card and went about my way. I did a review of them after the chat and told them why I was upset and what my issue was.
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