Thursday, April 21, 2016

BarkBox April 2016 review: Dogs are ready to play ball!

Sinead the Boston terrier with her dog toy
Sinead the Boston terrier has a lot to say about the April 2016 BarkBox shipment. See those two white teefers? I caught her in mid-bark. And while I don't have my Boston terrier translator ring on at the moment, I think I have a pretty good idea of what she's trying to say. I think she's trying to say that she's pretty happy with the haul.

Here's what we got this month.

Dog toys and dog treats on the table

There are three different treat selections this month, and three of them make me pretty darn happy. Why? Because they come from outside pet food manufacturers.

I like BarkBox for the introductions, as the shipments we've had in the past have shown me scores of pet supply providers that I may have walked right by in my local pet food store. Without the shipment, I wouldn't have known to stop and buy. Prior shipments have been heavy on the BarkMade brand (which is made in the BarkBox house). This month, we have three outsiders.

One is from Sojos, and it's a little fascinating. This product is made of free-range wild boar, which the company claims to source in the United States and process in a plant in Minnesota. Now, I've been to Minnesota, and I didn't see any boar. But apparently, they're there. And the dogs are darn happy about that. These dehydrated treats are both stinky and tasty. The dogs are fans.

The other is Nootie, which I had flat-out never heard of before. But based on this product, I'm destined to find out more. These little peanut-butter bites that came in our shipment are soft, stinky and very chewable. They passed the Sinead test, as she felt like they were treats that were only safe to eat under the couch. And they passed my test, as I can break them apart easily.

The third is from a company called Butcher's Block Pet Treats. This company specializes in dehydrated, all-meat treats. These treats don't smell like chemicals or yeast, like many dehydrated products do. And they don't tend to stain furniture and carpets during extended chewing sessions. So I'm always glad to see these in my shipments.

Liam the pug and Sinead the Boston terrier want the ball

And now we're on to the toys. There were two in this shipment, both from the in-house company. Both of these toys follow a baseball theme. There's a ball and a mitt. And one of these toys is slightly more popular than the other, and I think I know why.

The mitt, which Sinead is playing with up top, is a big thing with a squeaker embedded in one corner. It's fun to pull and chew and throw around, but it's also just kind of a hulking thing. They dogs like it, but they can't really figure it out.

But this ball is a proven winner. It's small, and there's some nubbly little substance inside that is great for chewing. An hour later, these two were still hard at play. And look at the smiles!

Liam the pug and Sinead the Boston terrier playing with a ball

Notice also that they've pulled their beds into the action. When a toy is really great, these dogs like to put the toy in the bed and fling the bed, so the toy goes flying. Liam has been playing like this nonstop since the shipment came. I'd say this toy was a hit!

If you'd like to see reviews of prior boxes, click here or here or here or here or here or here or here or here or here. And if you want to try your own BarkBox, use my code for a discount. And leave me a comment, so I'll know you were here!

Disclosure: Some product links in this post are “affiliate links.” If you click on them and make a purchase, I'll get a commission. Rest assured that I only recommend products that I believe provide real value. I was not compensated for this review. This disclosure comes in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


  1. How great that BarkBox introduces you to new food companies. And that baseball with the flames is fun!

    We love Sinead's teefs! :)

  2. That box looks like so much fun!!
    The toys are great! My dogs would love it!!

  3. those doggie pics are adorable

  4. Oh Cat! You got some great stuff in that bark box