During a long day in quarantine, those thuds outside our front doors were sometimes the only little thrill to be had. But how many of those packages were for your devoted pet, who almost certainly was curled up at your side the whole time?
Let’s show our furry besties the love with surprise deliveries on the regular. Subscription boxes are also a gift to yourself, by the way. They take the guesswork out of finding the best products for your pet and save you from having to run to the store.
Subscription boxes for dogs and cats abound, so we teased out the really great ones (with free shipping, of course) from the meh. And we’re not the only ones who think these clever kits are the top boxes: Every single one scores excellent ratings. Need some more pet goodies? Check out our vet-approved cat and dog essentials too.
Dog subscription boxes
$35/mo at Barkbox
A totally customized treasure trove of two toys, two bags of healthy treats and a chew? Yip, please. Each month brings a package based on a fresh theme. Recent themes included Spa Day and Dinner Date.
approximately $3.50 to $17.75 per day, depending on size of dog at Ollie
It’s highly unlikely that you’ve ever looked at your pup’s dinner and seriously considered having a taste. Well, when you start serving up these veterinarian-developed meals, you may have to get used to that feeling. Portioned out in convenient packages, they can be ordered on a flexible schedule or at set intervals. Recipes look flat-out delicious, with beef, chicken, lamb and turkey alongside fruits, leafy greens, root vegetables and superfood add-ins such as chia seeds.
The Dapper Dog
$35.99/mo at Amazon
Each month your dog gets two treats or chews and two toys, plus — this is what sets it apart — a stylish themed bandana. Since box contents are tailored to your pooch’s size, the bandana always fits just right. Another nice touch is that the selection of edibles emphasizes small businesses, and include natural meat treats from family farms and handmade dog cookies from independently owned bakeries.
From $33.99 at Pooch Perks
A boon for bargain hunters, this monthly delivery showers your pet with toys, treats, accessories and even poop bags (one can never have enough). The goodies are all made in the US, and everything costs less than what you’d pay for the same items in a store.
$40 From $34 for kibble delivery every four weeks and $12.60 for treats; thinkjinx.com)
Make your pup’s day (again and again) with a box of yummy superfood-centric eats. The bounty includes food made with top-tier ingredients, such as salmon, avocado, sweet potato and brown rice. And no fillers here: None of it contains corn, soy or wheat. Think chicken mango jerky and peanut butter and blueberry biscuits.
Pawstruck Chew Box ($36 per month; amazon.com)
A caboodle of chews! Treat your pupper to a monthly box of gnaw-worthy delights. Each month you’ll receive four different safe and healthy meat chews, like beef jerky, cow ears, bones and bully sticks. (Don’t worry — no rawhide.) Everything is handpicked to stand up to aggressive chewing.
The Farmer’s Dog (approximately $3 to $18 per day, depending on size of dog; thefarmersdog.com)
After going through a questionnaire on your pet’s health and diet, The Farmer’s Dog folks conjure up the best possible freshly made meals for your one and only dog. The food is slowly cooked at low temperatures to keep it as nutritious as possible, then quickly frozen for shipping. That process is impressive, but it gets bonus points for its environment-friendly packaging. It’s all recyclable and biodegradable.
Peture Perfect (starting at $27 per month; cratejoy.com)
If you’ve read this far, you’re likely a little obsessed with that cute canine of yours. Ain’t no shame in that game. This box is for you, then. Each month you’ll get a few lovely and useful items decorated with your pet’s hand-drawn portrait. You can change the image every three months, if you like. Show off your mutt’s mug…on a mug! Or a clock or a notebook or coaster or tote. Pet treat recipes are included too.
Bark Bright ($30 per month; barkbox.com)
Slobbery kisses without trash breath? Help them reach their #doggoals with an ingenious twist on a dog toothbrush: a chicken dental stick. Most dogs have some form of periodontal disease by age 3, which can have health consequences that go beyond their mouths. But let’s face it: Scrubbing their teeth consistently just doesn’t happen. Get the job done with ease with a monthly mailing of a dental stick and triple enzyme doggie toothpaste.
Cat subscription boxes
Meowbox ($23 per month; amazon.com)
Prepare to see your cat go bonkers. Each month, you’ll get five to six little presents for your kitty. The surprises run the gamut from stylish collars, handmade toys and catnip to squeaky mice and treats. You can opt for a no-treat version of your box, as well as a bimonthly delivery schedule. Oh, and for every Meowbox delivered, the company donates a can of cat food to a shelter. Love that.
Pretty Litter ($22 per month for one cat, $40 for two; prettylitter.com)
Litter is a conundrum. If it’s dust-free, it doesn’t clump. If it truly controls odor, it’s way too expensive. If it won’t stick to paws, then it’s heavy as heck to lug home from the store. The search for the perfect litter feels futile. Turns out, it’s not. Pretty Litter has it all, plus one rather amazing bonus. Through a reaction to your cat’s urine, it changes color to indicate the potential of a hidden health condition, such as a urinary tract infection or kidney problems.
KitNipBox ($19.99 per month; amazon.com)
Reviewers of this box made it sound like a purr-palooza. Plenty of catnip, toys, treats and accessories to go around, even for multiple cats. The boxes are always curated around a wacky (the wackier the better, we say) theme, like “Careers,” “Deli” and “A Walk in the Woods.” One repeat customer raved that his cats are all over the boxes before he even opens them, adding, “All three are now rummaging through the toys, picking their own.”
Crazy Cat Lady (starting at $38.33 per month; cratejoy.com)
Feed your cat crazies with a monthly fix of quirky loot, like feline-themed clothes, jewelry, books, accessories and home goods. Yes, items for your precious cat are included too. They’ll probably be looking at you like you’re a loon as you squeal over your new cat-festooned socks. But, hey, that’s why you love them.
Cat Person (approximately $2.80 per day; catperson.com)
With this highly customizable meal plan, your cat gets high-protein combinations of fresh and dry food. You’ll be sent a starter kit at first, so you can give your selected types and quantities a whirl to make sure it’s all just right. Included is a super-cute set of serving and storage tools. A frivolous but fun perk: The design of the packages is so adorable and mod, they’ll actually be decorative on the counter.