Dog Stories: Subscription Box Saves Furniture and Dog Owners’ Sanity

Sadie with her Bullymake subscription box for dogs

Pet Stories is a regular Barkytech feature where writers share personal narratives about their pets’ experiences with pet technology. If you would like to share your story, please contact Barkytech’s editor.


Sadie and her Bullymake subscription box

Two and half years ago, I couldn’t wait to introduce the whole world to my sweet, precious, adorable new puppy – a French Bulldog mixed with English Bulldog, Cocker Spaniel and Minatare Pincher. Brindle in color, oversized ears, and a curious, expressive face. Friends “Ooo!”-ed and family “Aww!”-ed, even strangers on the sidewalk stopped to gush about how cute she was.

“Look at those big ears!”

“That squishy little face!”

“Her wiggly, nubby tail!”

I was totally in love with Sadie. My dream of being a dog mom had finally come true, my life was complete.

Then came the chewing.

It seemed like normal puppy behavior when it started with a stray sock left within reach, a nearby throw pillow when not enough attention was being paid, or the single shoe of an unsuspecting guest. But as that first year of puppydom wore on, our ‘tiny bulldog’ became a destructive, gnawing, eating anything-she-can-get-her-little-mouth-on monster.

Victims of her insatiable appetite to chew included couch cushions torn open, their stuffing strewn from one end of the living room to the other; a brand new, powered recliner, its electric cord chewed nearly clean in half; an oscillating fan, another power cord frayed beyond repair; the armrest of a leather office chair; an expensive pair of eye glasses, rendering me blind at night without my contact lenses in; all four corners of our coffee table; an unfortunate kitchen cabinet base; five wall mounted door stops in our apartment unit; countless items of clothing (anything with zippers being a particular favorite) and more shoes than Carrie Bradshaw must have had, all shredded.

Of course, the obvious solution to our problem was that Sadie didn’t have enough of the right chew toys. So, we went to Petco, PetSmart, Target, Walmart, and everywhere else looking for more appropriate toys for her to chew on than our DVD collection.

We bought her Nyla bones, rope toys, stuffed animals, rubber toys, and even a variety of the infamously indestructible Kong toys – all with packaging proclaiming “For tough chewers!” – all ripped to pieces within minutes, often ingested in chunks, before being taken away from her for her own safety.

The never ending back and forth shopping was expensive, time consuming, frustrating, and ultimately ineffective. Each new toy after new toy was obliterated by the next day.

On top of the destruction, Sadie was constantly crazed trying to find something to chew on. She would jump at counters, tables, any surface that might have something on it she could nom on. We couldn’t sit down to eat dinner, watch a movie, play a game, load the dishwasher, or do anything in our home without having to stop every other second and shoo her away, trying to redirect her to toys we knew were inadequate. She was driving us insane!

Then one day I saw an ad for Bullymake box, “A Monthly Box for Power Chewers”. I was familiar with the allure of subscription boxes myself, receiving a package in the mail every month, curated to a personal interest, yet it’s exact contents a mystery. A thrilling concept, combined with all the modern-day convenience of online shopping and home delivery of virtually anything you can think of.

I was intrigued by the idea, but skeptical about the product itself. Afterall, I had purchased many “tough” dog toys before.

So, desperate as I was to find something to satisfy that itch in Sadie’s mouth, I took the bait and clicked on the link that brought me to the Bullymake website. There I read all about how it works. You can choose whether you want a box with toys and treats, or just toys. Select how long you’d like to commit for: 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, or a year. (The price per box goes down as the subscription length goes up).

The website boasted that their toys are all made in the USA to meet high safety standards, are long lasting and durable for power chewers, and come with a 14-day durability and satisfaction guarantee. It seemed like a remarkably confident offer considering Sadie had never had a single toy that lasted 2 weeks or more. I decided to read the reviews at this point, which confirmed both the exceptional durability of Bullymake toys and of the company honoring their 14-day durability guarantee, replacing or refunding any toys destroyed within 14 days of arrival.

After discussing it with my husband, we agreed that we would have nothing to lose if the 14-day durability guarantee would be honored. We decided to try a 3-month subscription to Bullymake. A Hail Mary attempt at saving the rest of our furniture from toothy destruction and providing a sufficient outlet for Sadie’s need to chew. We opted for the all toy box, no treats, since our tough chewer has a delicate, allergy riddled digestive system.

From the very first month, Sadie’s subscription to Bullymake has been a delightful success! She typically receives 4-5 toys in each box.

The types of toys vary, but Bullymake recently added a customizable feature so you can select which types of toys come in your dog’s box each month. The choices are nylon, rubber, rope, and ballistic. Sadie likes the nylon, rubber, and rope toys.

The nylon toys are super hard and although they end up gnawed on every edge, Sadie has never broken off pieces of any of the nylon toys like she had with the store-bought ones.

The same can be said of the rubber toys, they are made with a very strong rubber material that Sadie isn’t able to bite chunks out of. The rubber toys are also usually treat dispensing ones so your doggo can spend lots of time and energy trying to get the treats out.

The rope toys are actually fairly similar to some of the rope toys we’ve bought in stores. However, the store-bought ones don’t come with any kind of replacement or refund guarantee like Bullymake offers, so we still consider that value added.

In addition to the variety of the types of toys in each box, every month there is at least 2 featured toys in a holiday or seasonal theme. In November, the nylon toy was shaped like a piece of pumpkin pie and the rubber toy was shaped like a turkey, both were pumpkin orange. In February the nylon toy was heart-shaped and the rubber toy was a cupcake, both pink for Valentine’s Day.

We also like that you can go online and purchase most of the featured toys separately from your regular shipment of toys if there is one toy your dog particularly loves. Sadie and I both look forward to finding out what festive surprises await in her Bullymake box each month.

Even though there are still reminders of those unsettled chewing days – the leg of our kitchen table, the edge of the dividing wall between the kitchen and the entry way, my cherished handmade jewelry box – all with teeth marks scaring their surface, we’re happy those days are behind us. With one easy sign up, automatic withdrawal of the monthly cost from our bank account, and durability we’ve come to rely on, we couldn’t be happier with this dog toy subscription box.

And with a constant flow of fun new toys, Sadie loves her Bullymake box too!


About the Author

Jennifer Price

Jennifer Price received a business degree from Minnesota State University Moorhead (MSUM) where she developed an interest in working in the nonprofit sector. She now does prospect development for the MSUM Foundation. She lives in Fargo, ND with her husband and their dog Sadie. In her free time, her passions are reading, traveling, and staying active


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