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Puppy Bowl promotes animal rescue and adoption

While the Green Bay Packers defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XLV, Puppy Bowl VII's contestants were all winners as 47 canines found adoptive homes.

Animal Planet aired its annual Puppy Bowl on Sunday, a mock version of the Super Bowl featuring puppies playing in a miniature "stadium." Behind the "aww" factor of the Puppy Bowl, which garnered 8.6 million viewers in 2010, is a much more serious message about animal rescue.

"We have fun making it but there is a serious message. We talk about the importance of pet adoption, especially from local shelters," Andrew Schechter, an Animal Planet producer and Puppy Bowl referee, told the Wall Street Journal.

The dogs, also showcased on Animal Planet's website under "player stats," included a Golden retriever-Corgi mix named Amy from the Annapolis Dog Rescue Organization, and a border terrier mix named Calvin from Catawba County Animal Services.

Super Bowl XLV set a new record this year with 110 million viewers, achieving the highest TV ratings since 1986, according to Reuters. 
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