The cutest competition of the year is upon us. No matter what you think of the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers, no one can resist the Puppy Bowl, which will be entertaining animal lovers on Sunday before that “other” game kicks off from Las Vegas.
Puppy Bowl XX promises to be the biggest yet — and not just because Levi the 70-pound Great Dane puppy is squaring off against much smaller canines — but also because it will feature 131 puppies from 73 shelters and rescues across 36 states, according to Discovery.com.
The serious playtime will take place between Team Ruff and Team Fluff as they compete for the Lombarky Trophy, with all the action starting on Sunday, Feb. 11 at 2 p.m./11 a.m. PT on Animal Planet.
Fans can also vote daily on the Sweet Sixteen of players in a March Madness style bracket ahead of the Puppy Bowl, then the pup with the most votes will be voted “Most Popular.” Are you going to pick Fred or 49ers-inspired Bark Purdy? The winner will be announced on Feb. 11 … along with the winners of Super Bowl LVIII.
The Puppy Bowl also helps shelter animals across the country as Warner Bros. Discovery has pledged to match donations to cover adoption fees for Best Friends Animal Society’s lifesaving centers nationwide from Feb. 7-14. (Text PUPPY to 707070 to double your impact or find a shelter near you.) Inspirational adoption stories will air throughout the game to give background on the key players, and this year will also feature six special needs puppies, including Pug Terrier Riddle, who suffers from a neurological condition called cerebellar hypoplasia.
Baltimore Ravens offensive tackle Ronnie Stanley’s rescue foundation contributed two of the key players in the game, a hound mix named Linus and Beignet, the dachshund mix. While Ravens teammates Zay Flowers and Patrick Queen showed their soft side by filming a promo with the NFLPA and Operation Paws for Homes to get some cute fur balls adopted.
You can check out the full starting line up here, which features Chiefs’ fans favorite puppy, Patrick Mabones, a hound mix who looks like he can dominate the end zone.
Referee Dan Schachner returns for his 13th year controlling the chaos, with help from his canine assistant coach, Whistle. This year will also see Steve Levy and Taylor Rocks providing rough-and-tumble play-by-play commentary.
Be sure to tune in at 1 p.m. ET for pre-game coverage of puppy interviews and DNA results to predict who might have the extra edge over the competition. Of course, be sure to stick around at halftime for the famous Kitten Halftime Show.
While we all anxiously await the 2024 Puppy Bowl, you can catch up on some of the best touchdowns from Puppy Bowls past via Animal Planet’s Instagram.
Here’s everything you need to know to watch the Puppy Bowl XX:
Date: Sunday, Feb. 11, 2024
Time: 2 p.m. ET/ 11 a.m. PT
Pregame show: 1 p.m. ET/ 10 a.m. PT
Channel: Animal Planet
Referee: Dan Schachner
Commentators: Steve Levy, Taylor Rooks