Everything You Need To Know About Puppy Bowl XIII

By Travis Greenwood

Over 114 million viewers (or slightly more than 1 out of every 3 Americans) are expected to tune in this weekend for the NFL's yearly sportsball extravaganza, Super Bowl LI (side note: GO! PATS!).

But if your viewing habits skew more pugs than pigskin, and more labradors than linebackers, a furry, four-legged alternative exists: Puppy Bowl XIII!

Pug on the field at Animal Planet's Puppy Bowl
credit: Animal Planet

Developed originally to fill time on what is traditionally a slow ratings day for cable channels, the annual event has since attracted a loyal and rabid fanbase of its own.

And with good reason: Building on its adopt-don't-shop message, all of the adorable puppers are recruited from shelters around the country and subsequently rehomed with new forever humans.

Lab introduced at Puppy Bowl
credit: Animal Planet

This year's telecast airs Sunday at 3PM (EST) on Animal Planet and, naturally, Cuteness will have a full rundown of all the highlights both during and after the big game.

If you don't have cable ( writer raises hand ), fret not because there are (legal) ways to catch this must-see programming: the first is through DIRECT TV NOW ($35 monthly, but free 7-day trial periods are, wink wink, available), the second via Playstation's Vue service ($29.99 monthly).

Because the future is here and the future is now, subscribing to either will allow you to stream Animal Planet content on your laptop, tablet, or mobile device.

Team Fluff and Team Ruff compete for Lombarki Trophy
credit: Animal Planet

Animal Planet will also post Puppy Bowl clips to their YouTube channel, and their website has lots of features and highlights too.

Date: Sunday, Feb. 5
Start Time: 3 p.m. ET
TV Channel: Animal Planet
Live Stream: Animal Planet GO

This year's tilt will pit rival squads of 20 — divided into Team Fluff and Team Ruff — against one another for doggy domination, with the winning team taking home one of the most coveted prizes in all of sportsdom: the Lombarki Trophy.

Naturally, there's even a hype video to get you pumped up (not that anyone reading this probably needs it). Watch it now:

Below: some of the doggos we're most excited to see dashing around the gridiron at Puppy Bowl XIII (look over the rest of the starting lineups here).

Bizmark (Team Ruff)

Bizmark from Team Ruff at Puppy Bowl XIII
credit: Animal Planet

Lucky (Team Fluff)

Lucky from Team Fluff at Puppy Bowl XIII
credit: Animal Planet

Squirt (Team Ruff)

Squirt from Team Ruff at Puppy Bowl XIII
credit: Animal Planet

Foster (Team Ruff)

Foster from Team Ruff at Puppy Bowl XIII
credit: Animal Planet

Blitz (Team Fluff)

Blitz from Team Fluff at Puppy Bowl XIII
credit: Animal Planet

So, who ya got: Team Ruff or Team Fluff? Share your thought on which side is going to win in the comment section below!