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BAN THE BONE

Why Barkbox hires people from Disney and Lego to design toys for dogs

woman with puppy
Reuters/Claro Cortes IV
In on the joke.
  • Sarah Todd
By Sarah Todd

Senior reporter, Quartz and Quartz at Work

Bark doesn’t do paw prints. No bone or fire hydrant designs, either. Instead, the 1.1 million pet owners who partake in the company’s monthly subscription service receive boxes filled with inventive arrays of dog toys and treats, from plush, pastel boxes filled with stuffed macaroons (a highly popular item from a recent Paris-themed package) to Thanksgiving-appropriate “Corn on the Slob,” complete with a crinkly green husk and nylon stalk with which to play tug-of-war.

“We have an internal rule called ‘Ban the Bone,’” says Henrik Werdelin, a Bark co-founder who leads design and product development at the eight-year-old company. “We don’t want to do things that are obvious.”

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