Whether you’re welcoming a new pet into your home or searching for new products for a long-time furry friend, you’ve probably come across two of the most popular online pet retailers: BarkBox and Chewy.
But which company takes home the gold in the BarkBox vs. Chewy debate? BarkBox uses a subscription model, while Chewy offers a more traditional retail experience. However, they both stock toys, treats, food, and hygiene products for dogs.
Pet supply bargain hunters are looking for product variety, excellent pricing, and high quality when choosing an online pet supply retailer. Let’s explore how BarkBox and Chewy meet the needs of dog lovers and discount devotees.
What is BarkBox?
BarkBox was one of the most popular subscription boxes in 2020—but it’s only one arm of the Bark empire. Bark offers four different subscription plans:
- BarkBox, a monthly box containing toys, chews, and treats
- Bark Super Chewer, a BarkBox specifically for aggressive chewers
- BarkBright, a dental products subscription
- BarkEats, an individually wrapped meal subscription
Bark also sells some individual products via an online webstore. While some products in the subscription boxes are exclusive to members, their website includes:
- Dental Products
All of Bark’s products are designed and formulated in-house and manufactured in the United States and Canada.
What is Chewy?
Chewy is an online pet supply retailer offering pet toys, food, grooming products, and more for:
- Small pets (rabbits, guinea pigs, and ferrets, to name a few)
- Farm animals (including horses)
While Chewy doesn’t offer any subscription services, customers can sign up for recurring delivery of consumable products like food, treats, and soap. They offer products from countless brands, including household names and small operations alike.
A one-stop-shop for all things pet-related (they can even fill prescriptions for heartworm medication and flea/tick prevention), Chewy offers pet supplies at industry-standard prices while running frequent sale campaigns.
BarkBox vs. Chewy
While BarkBox makes its bread and butter on subscription services, its online webstore offers some of the Bark brand products available in its monthly boxes. Their website is therefore a direct competitor for Chewy.
So, how do they stack up against each other? Let’s take a look.
Variety of Products
The sheer number of products in Chewy’s inventory is unmatched. Their online listings for dog toys alone surpass 3,600 items, and they offer countless other product types for numerous other pet species.
BarkBox, however, only caters to dogs. Their toy inventory sits just below 270 products, and items are routinely filtered out once they’re out of stock.
BarkBox also primarily sells dog toys in its online webstore, while Chewy sells:
- Dog food
- Potty training supplies
- Collars and leashes
- Water and food bowls
- Dog shampoo
- Prescription medications
Additionally, Chewy sells its own branded products in addition to countless other brands. For something as specific as treat-dispensing toys, Chewy offers products from over ten different brands. Since BarkBox only sells Bark brand products, Chewy bests them in brand variety in addition to sheer product quantity.
For shoppers looking for a variety of products and brands (or to shop for their cats and canaries along with their pups), BarkBox won’t deliver nearly as many options as Chewy. But, for shoppers seeking a dog supply retailer that has honed in on its brand and products, BarkBox is an excellent option.
Price of Products
If you’re bringing a pup home for the first time, the cost of products you need to pick up for your new furry friend can add up. New pet parents looking for deals turn to online pet retailers for affordable prices.
In this case, Chewy and BarkBox are more or less comparable. For example, both offer hot dogs chew toys. Bark’s Everything Hot Dog plush toy clocks in at $9.99, while Chewy’s American Classic Hot Dog plush toy is $9.43.
Quality of Products
Both BarkBox and Chewy cater to people looking for affordable products. If you’re looking for luxury or premium goods, these might not be the best sites.
While shoppers may have to experiment with a variety of brands to find a product they love from Chewy, BarkBox customers will have a representative idea of product quality after their first order.
BarkBox’s North American-made products should feature consistent, good quality across categories of branded products (toys, for instance).
If you’re satisfied, that’s good news. If you’re not, you’ll need to find a different retailer.
Chewy, in contrast, offers their own branded products, but they also offer countless brands. Not satisfied with the first treat you find? Keep shopping! Chewy’s biggest advantage in the realm of quality is its variety.
BarkBox vs. Chewy: Which Should You Choose for Pet Supplies?
If you’re looking for a subscription-based model, you’ll be interested in BarkBox.
But if you’re planning to buy one-off items, consider the following merits of BarkBox vs. Chewy:
- All of Bark’s products are designed and formulated in-house.
- Chewy’s variety of products and brands renders them a one-stop shop.
- BarkBox and Chewy products represent a similar price point.
- BarkBox’s forte is consistency, while Chewy’s is quality.
And don’t forget—it’s perfectly okay to patronize both stores! Wouldn’t your pup love to sample a variety of foods from Chewy and a monthly box of treats and toys from BarkBox?
Splurge and Save on Your Furry Friend With RebateKey
Pet parents looking for great deals and excellent value are likely to find both at Chewy and BarkBox.
Great deals and excellent value are what we want to help customers find at RebateKey. We offer an unmatched list of coupons, rebates, and deals for retailers, and we want to save savvy shoppers money on things they’re already buying.
Our partnerships with a variety of brands (including Chewy) help us find the best money-saving deals for bargain hunters and shoppers on a budget. Our blog also provides general information and money-saving tips to keep you from paying full price ever again.
Explore RebateKey’s database of deals and start saving money on pet essentials!
Forbes. Retail Subscriptions Rise Thrive During COVID-19. https://www.forbes.com/sites/kaleighmoore/2020/07/15/retail-subscriptions-thrive-during-covid-19/?sh=2a3943c52a0b
CNN. Chewy’s National Dog Day Sale Has Everything Your Pup Will Ever Need, Including Discounts on Gift Cards. https://www.cnn.com/2021/08/24/cnn-underscored/chewy-national-dog-day-deals/index.html
American Kennel Club. New Puppy Checklist: Gear You’ll Need for Your New Dog. https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/home-living/puppy-shopping-list-needs-care-preparations/