Maybell and Hope
Watch as rescue pups compete to win the Petco Lombardy trophy on Super Bowl Sunday during Puppy Bowl XIII. Pictured are dogs Maybell and Hope. Animal Planet

It’s time to get ruff and tough! While sports fans tune in to watch Super Bowl 51 on Sunday, animal lovers will likely want to watch to Animal Planet’s 2017 Puppy Bowl.

Puppy Bowl XIII kicks off at 3 p.m. EST (12 p.m. PST) on Sunday, Feb. 5, on Animal Planet. This year marks the first time the game will air simultaneously on both coasts. If you miss the first airing, don’t fret! Puppy Bowl XIII will air on repeat for 10 hours during game day.

The matchup between Team Ruff and Team Fluff will take place at GEICO Stadium at the teams battle for the coveted Petco Lombardy trophy. Also up for grabs is BISSELL’s MVP (Most Valuable Puppy), which will go to the pup who scores most touchdowns with toys.

“Rufferee” Dan Schachner returns to lead this year’s 78 puppies, who hail from 34 different U.S. rescue organizations. The game will also include a celebrity cameo from Mr. Punxsutawney Phil. Animal Planet has revealed Phil will be responsible for the coin toss to kick off the game just days after revealing his annual Groundhog Day weather report.

If you want some extra puppy action, tune in to the pre-show at 2 p.m. EST (11 a.m. PST). The installment will feature “aww-naylis and cuddly commentary” from sports correspondents.


A photo posted by Animal Planet (@animalplanet) on

Luckily for fans who don’t have access to a TV on Super Bowl Sunday, there are different ways to enjoy the event. Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl Virtual Reality allows fans to watch 360 degree clips from the game from a “pup’s eye view.” The virtual reality option is available on the network’s site, YouTube and via Discovery VR iOS and Android apps.

Of course, fans can also check out the behind-the-scenes action on the live Puppy Bowl Locker Room Cam. If social media is more your speed, follow up-to-the-minute updates of the game on Twitter.

If you want to watch the actual game online during Super Bowl Sunday, consider checking out the 7-day free trial for DirectTV Now. Access to the streaming platform allows you to watch over 120 channels, including Animal Planet, live or on-demand.