What it’s like to raise Puppy Bowl stars in the Memphis area
Puppies from the Memphis area will be featured in the 2021 Puppy Bowl. Foster mom April Strickland explains what it’s like to raise them.
Ray Padilla, Memphis Trade Call
If you’re looking for something other than football to watch on Sunday, four Mid-South puppies will be featured nationally, playing and napping with 66 other adoptable dogs from across the country in the 17th Annual Puppy Bowl.
When it airs this weekend, the Memphis area will be represented by Jiffy, Tank, Cosmo and Vinnie, all rescue dogs from Charlie’s Crusaders Pet Rescue.
“Charlie’s group has helped over 1,000, almost 2,000 to find their forever homes,” said Kent Mathis, whose family is affiliated with the rescue. “We hope this exhibition can help us take it to another level.”
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Charlie’s is a non-profit organization that rescues dogs that have been abandoned or abused or are in shelters to kill in the Mid-South and works to find their forever homes, often in the Northeast. The group receives medical attention from the dogs and places the puppies in foster care until they find a permanent home.
Dogs of all ages and breeds are rescued, but Charlie’s often focuses on larger dog breeds, which are less likely to be adopted into shelters.
This is the first time that dogs rescued by Charlie’s Crusaders have been featured in the Puppy Bowl.
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“We watched 16 of 16 at my house. We’ve all watched them at my house and we think it’s fantastic, ”said Mathis. “It’s very exciting. It’s a bit like meeting your hero.
The Puppy Bowl folks reached out to Charlie’s and asked if they would be interested in having some of their puppies featured in the 2021 extravaganza. When Charlie’s team said yes, they were asked to send photos, videos and descriptions of four dogs, one of which could be chosen.
“They reached out to us and said, ‘We all love the four of us,” “Mathis said.
Thus, Jiffy, Tank, Cosmo and Vinnie went on an adventure with their host families to New York, where the filming takes place. Due to COVID-19 security protocols, they were all expected to arrive two weeks before the bowl was quarantined.
The Puppy Bowl, which aired on Animal Planet and this year Discovery +, has been part of Super Bowl Sunday for a decade and a half. For those in need of a break from the crunch of helmets and protections and the endless string of car and Doritos commercials, the Puppy Bowl provides hours of mellow fun.
Dogs are selected from shelters and rescue agencies across the country, divided into “Team Ruff” and “Team Fluff” and sent to the arena to fight for the chew toys and the hearts of viewers around the world. . This year the puppies will be joined by hosts Martha Stewart and Snoop Dogg.
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However, the annual fluff-fest is meant to not only entertain, but promote the adoption of pets, and 100% of the dogs that have attended the event in the past have been adopted.
Many dogs featured in this year’s Puppy Bowl have already been adopted, including Tank, a Rottweiler-Boxer mix.
Tank is also in the final of the “Pupularity Playoffs”, against Marshall, a Boston Terrier from Virginia. The Mid-Southern can vote for their hometown puppy on puppybowl.com.
How to watch
The 2021 Puppy Bowl will air on Animal Planet and discovery + on Sundays starting at 1 p.m. CST. The adorable event lasts three hours.
This year’s iteration will feature 70 dogs from 22 shelters and rescues across the country.
How to volunteer
Mathis said Charlie is always looking for donations and volunteers.
The organization needs foster families who are able to care for the dogs, usually between two and four weeks old, from the time they are rescued until the time they go to their permanent home.
To donate to Charlie’s Crusaders, get more information on how to become a foster family, or view the dogs currently available for adoption, visit charliescrusaders.org.