It’s paws down for the Puppy Bowl at Super Bowl LII.
The furry four-leggers will be replaced at this year’s Super Bowl Live event on Nicollet Mall with their feline friends.
For the first time, the Hallmark Channel’s Kitten Bowl will be scratched out live at a Super Bowl event.
The dogs had their day. In the past two years, the Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl packed in the fans around a faux football field.
Both the kitties and the puppies in the events are recorded (and strongly edited) in advance by their respective channels then broadcast live on game day, Feb. 4. At the Kitten Bowl, a Hissman Trophy is awarded.
The Kitten Bowl starts Jan. 26 inside the space on Nicollet Mall formerly occupied by Dayton's Department store. The kitties play in their own miniature stadium with goal posts entwined for climbing and footballs bouncing from strings. The corner is the heart of the 10-day event featuring live concerts.
“Puppies do adorable things but kittens will literally do flips to catch those balls,” said Pam Slay, senior vice president at Crown Media, the owner of the Hallmark Channel.
With the palm-sized furballs, the bowl games are at the mercy of whims of kittens. If they're like the puppies, they will draw crowds if they just sit around looking cute.
Pam Slay, senior vice president at Crown Media, which owns the Hallmark Channel, said the 100 kittens participating in the broadcast are all available and will be adopted as they have in the previous years. The event also coincides with game-day parties at 500 shelters across the country, Slay said.
That’s the primary message of the event: Adopt. Every year, millions of companion animals are euthanized because they can’t find homes, Slay said.
“They’re the most beautiful animals in the world,” she said, adding, “And they’re right in your neighborhood.”
Previous Kitten Bowl stars include Tabby Romo, Tomcat Brady, Feline Manning, Meow Brees and Joe Montuna, Slay said.
Good luck walking away empty-handed from this event.
The Animal Planet didn't respond to a question about the Puppy Bowl.