Fans can watch the Puppy Bowl 2016 live online and take a enjoy their adorable break from sports on the biggest day for athletics.
Super Bowl Sunday has become a holiday unto itself, with a full day dedicated to dissecting the football matchup, interviewing players, and replaying Super Bowls of years past. With football reaching saturation levels on television, Animal Planet wisely created an alternative for animal lovers to enjoy.
Fans who want to watch the Puppy Bowl 2016 can tune in to Animal Planet at 3 p.m., or they can tune in online to watch streaming video (link available below).
My dream job is being the ref for the Puppy Bowl pic.twitter.com/c8vW0oBgXw
— German Shepherds (@BestOfShepherds) February 7, 2016
This year is Puppy Bowl XII, with Team Fluff taking on Team Ruff on a miniature football field. There isn’t actually a winner (other than the puppy-loving viewers), but there will be some hilarious play-by-play commentary and a few yellow flags thrown for unpupsmanlike conduct.
As per SB Nation, the talent scouts who assembled the teams scoured animal rescue organizations to find the cutest players.
“This year, they’ve partnered with 44 animal shelters and rescue organizations from across the country to fill the two teams’ rosters. The network also partnered with the Pro Football Hall of Fame to honor legendary puppy players and bolster interest in adoption of older animals.
“Rescue groups for this year’s participants span 25 states, including Nevada, Arizona, New York, Virginia, Florida, Illinois, Texas, Tennessee and others. Animal Planet’s year-wide effort to promote pet adoption has led to more than 3,000 animals finding new homes.”
The event has become a huge success for Animal Planet, attracting plenty of media attention and drawing in big ratings. Last year’s Puppy Bowl was the top non-sports telecast for the day, attracting 2.8 million viewers, including 1 million in the coveted 25-to-54 demographic. The show was actually second for the entire day in this demographic, beaten only by NBC’s Super Bowl pre-game coverage.
To make things a little more interesting, Animal Planet is letting fans pick their Puppy Bowl fantasy team, scoring points for each of the pups they pick. This allows viewers to get a rundown of the puppies who will be competing in the Puppy Bowl 2016, with a breakdown of all the most important stats.
There is a bit of an uneven playing field, however. The Puppy Bowl 2016 was actually filmed in October, so the outcome and the fantasy scores are already known.
Fans who watch the 2016 Puppy Bowl live online will see more than just the adorable dogs. There is referee Stanley the Skunk, some silkie chicken cheerleaders, as well as “Pup Close and Personal” profiles of the participants.
— Jackson Galaxy (@JacksonGalaxy) February 7, 2016
As the Journal Gazette noted, Animal Planet is also giving fans a more in-depth look at all the work that goes into putting the Puppy Bowl together.
The report found that the longtime referee is a big part of making it all happen.
“That’s where Dan Schachner reigns king. He’s been the official referee of the Puppy Bowl since the tradition started in 2005. (His audition tape featured him trying to set up football games in a park with random dogs whose owners were less than pleased.)
” ‘There’s a lot to pay attention to,’ he says. ‘Is this one peeing too much? Is this one napping too long? Is this one biting too much?’ “
[Image via Animal Planet]