When it comes to your dog, you only want what’s best, and we understand the love you have for your furry best friend! The BarkVA team is made up of dog owners who promise to love your dogs just as much as we love ours.
From diet food for your little-too-pudgy pup and treats to toys for heavy chewers and outdoor doggy gear, we only choose and review the products we think are worth putting to the test.
Though we may receive a commission on some of the affiliate products we review, we make it our goal to give you honest, tried-and-true information so that you can make the right decision for yourself and your four-legged family member.
How We Test Dog Products
Before we can test a product, we first have to find products that are worth testing. We have a wide range of categories that we explore in order to introduce dog owners to useful products and give them the biggest bang for their buck.
Some categories we explore daily are:
- Dog food and treats
- Dog accessories and outdoor gear
- Leashes and collars
- Grooming gear
- Cleaning products for messes
- Doggy bags and travel gear
Once we know which category we want to try out, we start searching for the top products in that group. Finding the top products is a heck of a job, but we begin by looking for popular dog product companies and at reviews to see what dog lovers are raving about. Speaking of user reviews, we make sure they’re not phony by putting those through the microscope of our skepticism, as well.
When we find the products we want to review, we put them to the test using our own dogs and advice from dog trainers, vets, dog walkers, and other relevant sources. We make sure that we cover all the bases, like testing products on dogs of all sizes, ages, coat thicknesses, and activity levels to give dog owners the diverse information they need.
Testing That Can Be Repeated
We only test with methods that can be observed and re-observed. Repetitive tests give us the confidence that a product is working – or not working – as it should. We rate products in various categories that we feel will be important to dog owners across the board.
These are subject to change, depending on the products we’re testing, but products are generally rated by:
- How well they perform their designed task
- Comfort level or ease for the dog and owner to use
- Quality of the product
- Sizing on dogs of different breeds (or dogs in a specific weight limit)
After testing is done, we gather up our research and decide which product is the best overall – the one that can be used by most dog owners regardless of their dog’s breed – and which products are best for specific uses, certain kinds of dogs, or other categories.
Our Opinions On Products
Not only will we give you our positive opinions on the products we test, but we’ll also tell you exactly what we didn’t like.
Was the product easy to use on our dogs? Did it work as we expected or as advertised? Were our dogs comfortable, happy, or entertained with the product? Did the product contain ingredients that benefited our dogs? Did we see any promising results?
Our aim is to test products and share our experiences with them in as much detail as possible so you can feel confident that you’re choosing the best product for your pooch and avoiding the ones that won’t work.
Putting Dog Products To The Test At Home
We use dog products as they’re intended and in the environment they’re designed to be in. We test products on our very own pooches, and if we don’t have a certain dog available we’ll make sure we find one through volunteers.
We walk our dogs through sun, wind, snow, and rain, test out toys on our toughest chewers, and bathe our dirtiest dogs right at home. We aim to make our testing environment as realistic and similar to yours as possible without any fancy treatment and test on dogs as diverse as their owners.
Our testing time ranges, but we like to put products to the test for at least a couple of weeks before we make up our minds.
Why Put Your Confidence In Us?
We may receive a commission on the products we review, but that doesn’t mean we offer dodgy information just to make a few bucks.
We’re dog-crazy people with pups of our own and we want to treat your dog with the same love and care that we treat our own with. Not every product we test will be recommended to you, and the top products you see will only be the ones we found were worth sharing with you.
To gain more of your trust, we’ll even include the products that didn’t make the list of our top picks at the end of the review so you can see why we chose other products over them.
Ultimately, we want the decision to be left up to you, but we also want it to be an easy and informed one! We put in the hard work, reach the mountain top of product success, and go through crash-and-burn dog product failures so you don’t have to.
We want you to rest assured that you’re getting quality products that will benefit your dog and you as a dog owner and we’ll never recommend a product we don’t think is worth anything. If, later on, we see a decline in the quality of products we recommended in the past, we’ll test it again and replace it with a more up-to-date product.