Some of us balk at spending $16 for a Netflix monthly premium subscription, but we’ll shell out twice that to have our dogs feast on gourmet canine pot pie, made with organic chicken, spinach, and blueberries. The best dog subscription boxes have always existed to simplify this act of spoiling our pets by offering regular delivery of everything from toys and treats to gear, specialty food, and even monthly medication.
But dog subscription boxes are now an important tool in the social distancing toolbox, too, allowing pet parents to stock up without hitting the stories. And they’re key to keeping dogs entertained in lockdown, even when you’re working from home, since a bored dog will make their own “fun” by chewing up your shoes or marking new territory around the house. The best subscription boxes offer products that spark a dog’s curiosity, challenge them, and engage their natural instincts. We found six of the best.
Many of the subscription services below offer customized options based on considerations like size, breed, and age, so much of the thinking has been done for you. That said, you’ll still want to want to familiarize yourself with the ingredients in food and treats, supervise play with toys that contain squeakers or other parts that could become a choking hazard, and consult your vet before introducing new products like CBD oil into your dog’s wellness regimen.
First, you know Kong. Hell, if you're anything like us, you've already got a few of the company's durable toys. But we were impressed with its subscription box, which, like some others on this list, really allows you to customize it to your pup, from size, age, and one of six areas of interest, including chewing, separation anxiety, and weight management. Regardless of your pup's issues, Kong has a box for it.
If you follow any dog influencers on Instagram, chances are you’re familiar with BarkBox. Each delivery is a 'grammable, themed collection that includes two toys, two bags of treats, and a chew, all made in the USA or Canada. (Past themes include Frenchies in Paris, Thankstuffing, and Chewrassic Bark.) Customers can choose between a one-off purchase or three-, six-, or 12-month subscriptions, which are progressively cheaper. The company also offers the Super Chewer box, which includes more durable toys and chews designed for dogs who love to gnaw.
Combining both toys and treats, this middle-of-the-road option has a great variety. Its toys (two or three per box) are all made from rugged materials and are replacement-guaranteed to withstand the onslaught of the worst chewers. The three bags of treats are grain-free and can be tailored to allergies, should your pup have some. With these components, it's surprisingly affordable.
With The Farmer's Dog, again you provide a few details about your dog, including body type, activity level, and dietary issues, and they’ll recommend a customized meal plan centered around their human-grade, fresh food offerings and ship it (for free) to your door in pre-portioned packages. Plans start at $2 a day, but pricing varies widely depending on your dog’s dietary needs. The brand says its ingredients are sourced from local farms when possible. A 50-pound dog would need $107.50 worth of food, every two weeks.
Ollie works much like your own personalized meal delivery service. You create a canine profile, with age, breed, weight, and allergies, and Ollie designs a meal plan for your dog, with customized recipes. The meals meals (think hormone-free chicken and pasture-raised lamb) arrive on a flexible, regular schedule, and you use the brand's feeding guide to give your dog their customized portion. Prices vary based on your dog's size and dietary requirements, with the cheapest being $2 a day.
For a mere $30 per month, your dog will chew his or her heart out. Each box has 15 to 20 dog chews, including bully sticks, beef tendons, and of course, jerky chews. The treats are rawhide-free and are sourced from local farmers when possible. They're a solid alternative to your $350 shoes.
Greenwell offers a monthly sampling of health and wellness products, including oils, treats, and grooming products. Many of the items are designed to address specific issues like separation anxiety, skin issues, and joint pain, with a particular emphasis on CBD and hemp products. The company claims that all of the products – including toys – are made with earth-friendly materials. While CBD is generally considered safe for dogs, talk to your vet first, especially if your dog is on a prescription medication or takes supplements.
Call it the un-subscription box. Chewy offers a small range of Goody Box options for dogs and cats, none of which require a monthly commitment. Though the boxes for dogs are not customizable, each contains a bundle of six products, including items like treats, toys, and fashion accessories, in a few different themes. Chewy does offer a convenient auto-ship option on most pet foods, wellness products, and prescription medications (which require approval from your pet’s vet), so you can schedule regular deliveries of the products you use most.
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