The think boxes are a pair of boxes that make animals think and talk like humans beings. They were invented by Gyro Gearloose. They were introduced in the comic book story "The Think Box Bollix", by Carl Barks.
If an animal passes between the two think boxes, it starts to think and talk like a human being. If the polarity of the think boxes is reversed, and the thinking animal passes between the two boxes once more, the process is undone and the animal starts to behave normally again.
- In "The Think Box Bollix" (1952, Carl Barks), Gyro Gearloose invents the think boxes and leaves them on each side of an animal trail, to affect animals that may pass by. Donald Duck dresses himself as a wolf, and pretends to be a normal wolf that got affected by the think boxes, because he wants to scare Huey, Dewey, and Louie into ceasing to spend time with Gyro Gearloose. Ironically, the think boxes actually cause a real wolf to think and talk. The real wolf says that he has lost interest for raw meat, and decides to roast and eat Donald Duck instead, but Huey, Dewey, and Louie manage to save his uncle. Gyro manages to trick the wolf into passing between the boxes with the polarity reversed, thus causing it to be a normal wolf again. A bunny, too, is affected by the boxes and asks Donald "Can you spare a dime for a bunch of carrots?", to which Donald replies: "Oh, shut up!"
- In "The Duck Who Never Was" (1994, Don Rosa), Donald Duck wishes he was never born, which causes him to go to a alternate, dystopian version of Duckburg where multiple characters have serious problems because of Donald's absence in their lives. In a retelling of the scene above from "The Think Box Bollix", the talking wolf attempts to attack Gyro since Donald was never born. Both the wolf and Gyro are caught up in the reverse polarity ray, which not only causes the wolf becomes wild again, but Gyro too is affected and gets a normal human brain as a result, thus becoming unable to invent anything ever again. In the end, Donald reverses the wish and Duckburg becomes normal again.
- In "Gyro's First Invention" (2002, Don Rosa), the origin of Little Helper is connected with the think boxes. Gyro Gearloose is shown before he started his career as an inventor. At this point, Gyro is still working on a think box, and says that it is going to be his greatest invention. Gyro plans to test the think boxes on animals, if he ever figures out how to make it work. Donald's lamp is left sitting on a think box prototype, which causes the lamp to be "charged by the rays of pure thought" and become a thinking being. Gyro Gearloose then builds a small body for the lamp, and thus Little Helper is born.