Scouting Puppy Bowl IX

More

On February 3, roughly 10 percent of the number of people expected to watch Super Bowl XLVII will be watching Puppy Bowl IX, an increasingly popular football alternative in the era of CTE, on Discovery Channel's Animal Planet. In the New Yorker Andrew Marantz turns a curious ear to what and why the bowl is:

The Puppy Bowl is not a game of strategy. Players are let loose, ten at a time, on a three-by-six-yard "field" strewn with chew toys. Though the puppies don't know it, their objective is to drag one of the chew toys into either end zone. There are no teams and no uniforms, and everyone is a running back.

Marantz notes that it's largely a feat of editing, where 90 hours of play and listless urinating are condensed down to two. And it's not just the 63 dogs, but also a gaggle (kache?) of kittens, and this year the notable addition of hedgehog cheerleaders.

Animal Planet recently released their starting lineup, which is now driving speculation, wagers, and familial divides across the country. Here are the most promising prospects, by my numbers.


Daisy

3daisy-622x468.jpg
(Keith Barraclough / Discovery Channel)

Trinka

3trinka-622x468.jpg
(Keith Barraclough / Discovery Channel)

Aurora

3aurora-622x468.jpg
(Keith Barraclough / Discovery Channel)

Fitz

3fitz-622x468.jpg
(Keith Barraclough / Discovery Channel)

Cash

3cash-622x468.jpg
(Keith Barraclough / Discovery Channel)

Chestnut

3chestnut-622x468.jpg
(Keith Barraclough / Discovery Channel)

The dogs are from various shelters and adoption agencies. And as we found out earlier this week, if looking at them inspired in you any sort of visceral physical response -- like aggressively popping bubble wrap -- that's actually completely normal.

Winning is everything.

Jump to comments
Presented by

James Hamblin, MD, is a senior editor at The AtlanticHe is the host of If Our Bodies Could Talk.

 
 
More

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

The Ghost Trains of America

Can a band of locomotive experts save vintage railcars from ruin?


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Why Did I Study Physics?

Using hand-drawn cartoons to explain an academic passion

Video

What If Emoji Lived Among Us?

A whimsical ad imagines what life would be like if emoji were real.

Video

Living Alone on a Sailboat

"If you think I'm a dirtbag, then you don't understand the lifestyle."

Video

How Is Social Media Changing Journalism?

How new platforms are transforming radio, TV, print, and digital

Video

The Place Where Silent Movies Sing

How an antique, wind-powered pipe organ brings films to life

Feature

The Future of Iced Coffee

Are artisan businesses like Blue Bottle doomed to fail when they go mainstream?

Writers

Up
Down

More in Health

Just In