Friday, May 22, 2015

The May Not-Actually-Allergy-Friendly BarkBox

Our May BarkBox arrived on Wednesday, and it was filled with disappointment. Seriously, they could have sent an empty box and I'd have felt about the same when I opened it. Brisbane knows that BarkBoxes contain all sorts of wonders, so this box was a huge disappointment for him as well. "What's in here for you, Briz? It's...nothing. Actually there's nothing in here for you. Sorry. Nevermind."

The allergy-friendly BarkBox is not supposed to contain any chicken, turkey, beef, gluten, wheat, corn, or soy. Brisbane is allergic to chicken, turkey, duck, and eggs. Sometimes we get a food item with duck or eggs, but mostly we get treats with rabbit, venison, lamb, peanut butter, or fish. I can either swap out the allergen-containing treats using the Scout's Honor program, or I can swap out an awful crinkly toy instead. Brisbane and Ru really don't like toys that make crinkling noises, especially not loud ones.

Our BarkBox this month contained a bag of Nootie No Grainers Jerky BBQ Chicken treats. Wtf?

We also got an Etta Says turkey stick. Did BarkBox send us the wrong box? Did they stop offering allergy-friendly boxes without telling me so I could cancel my subscription?

There is a West Paw Designs Bumi tug toy, which looks cool and is very sturdy. Too bad Briz doesn't care for it. He had a Hurley toy by the same company when he was a pup, and I could  never convince him that it was any fun either.

The last thing in here is a R2P Pets Silly Bums bee butt. I am familiar with the Silly Bums toys, and frankly I think they're kind of stupid. They're not cute, they're not silly, they're just half a stuffy. All the ones I've seen before were just regular crinkly stuffies this, this one is something else entirely. It is majorly crinkly, the loudest crinkle toy I think I've ever seen. It also has a whole lot of plastic on it, the wings and the stripes are sewn-on vinyl. I'm not convinced that's safe, and am not completely convinced this is actually a toy intended for dogs. The number of accessible seams on it make it incredibly vulnerable to being shredded, it's just begging to be ripped apart.

So this is literally an entire box of stuff I will have to give away. I emailed BarkBox to ask why we got a box of poultry, with the plan to cancel my subscription and ask for a refund for this month if they discontinued the allergy-friendly boxes without telling me. I noticed on their Facebook page that quite a few people with 'special' boxes got regular boxes instead. Apparently there is an extra toy option for multi-dog households, and a tough toys only option for destructo-dogs. The flood of complaints appears to be limited to this month, and our box was sent out a day late so I'm pretty sure something unusual happened at BarkBox this month.

Last year I emailed them in order to cancel my subscription after receiving nothing but chicken-based treats for three months in a row. Our June 2014 box contained chicken treats and lame toys and I decided then that I was done. This time around the response I received was that there was a mistake with the treats for the allergy boxes and that I would receive an email today about how they were going to fix things. As of 9pm Thursday I have received no such email and am seriously considering canceling my subscription. Pretty much nothing they do is going to result in us getting anything for a few weeks, so the response might as well be "Oh well, better luck next month." Not cool, BarkBox. Not cool at all.


  1. Sounds very, very, annoying! There are some other subscription boxes, which you could look into if you if you decide to discontinue BarkBox. Here is a list from Dogster: http://www.dogster.com/lifestyle/last-minute-holiday-gifts-christmas-hanukkah-shopping
    And here is an apparently new one, which is a sponsored post: http://www.dogster.com/lifestyle/surprise-my-pet-dog-treat-subscription

    1. Oh wow, thanks! We were sticking with BarkBox for their allergy-friendly option. I'm seriously considering trying a Freddie's Finds or Pet Gift Box now...maybe both...

    2. You're welcome! Lily can't really have treats right now because of her elimination diet, but if I find a toy-only box then maybe I'll try it.