Chances are, you've watched the adorable Puppy Bowl that airs on Animal Planet each year on Super Bowl Sunday. It features adoptable shelter pets that play, lick the camera lens and score touchdowns in the hearts of viewers.
So stinkin' cute you just want to reach through the television screen and give them a hug.
Well, now's your chance.
The Humane Society of Pinellas is hosting the PetFest 2017 Tail-gate Pawty and with it, its first Puppy Bowl adoption event. Sponsored by the Fran Haasch Law Group, the doggy affair will be held Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 300 Carillon Parkway in St. Petersburg, in the field behind the Carillon Publix.
Admission is free.
The Puppy Bowl will feature dozens of young canine contenders dressed in uniform, ready to sniff out the competition and have a ball.
The goal? To score a forever home with a loving family.
A recent preview of some of the pups proved they have the big-eyed cuteness and canine chops to pull it off.
About 100 dogs and puppies will be on the grounds and available for adoption from the Humane Society and other rescue groups.
While puppies will be in the spotlight, organizers are hoping people will give serious consideration to adopting an adult dog.
"There are a lot of advantages to adopting grown dogs," said Twila Cole, director of community relations for the Humane Society. "They have developed their personality and look so it's a great way to make a true match. They are usually less work. Often they are already trained and it will be just a matter of them getting used to their new home, environment and schedule."
In addition to the adoption event, there are plenty of other dog-themed activities going on.
At 10 a.m., the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office K9 unit will give a demonstration.
Bring your costumed pet for the 11 a.m. costume contest where judges like WFLA's Melanie Michael and retired Super Bowl champion Rodney Bailey will select the best sports fan, most original and funniest costumes. The cost to enter is $5; be sure to register by 10:45 a.m.
Interactive activities on the agenda include a lure course for Fido and Ghira's Goodies Kids Zone.
There will also be concessions, a blood drive and a pet photo booth. About 50 vendors will offer everything from pet toys to clothes for humans.
During the event, puppies will cost $200 to adopt and adult dogs will be priced from $75 to $200. The fee includes spaying, neutering, age-appropriate vaccinations and microchips.
Cole wants people to know that the Humane Society of Pinellas is more than a place to adopt dogs or cats.
"We offer obedience classes, low-cost veterinarian care, and a variety of programs to help keep people and their pets together," she said.
Programs include a pet food pantry for those who can't afford it and behavioral consultations to help owners address a range of problems for both dogs and cats.
Events like this one generate funds to support these additional operations and, of course, help find suitable homes for pets in need. Interviews will be conducted on site to ensure an optimal matchmaking experience.
"It used to be that our average time in the shelter for an adoptable pet was about 190 days," Cole said. "Over the last several years we have reduced our average length of stay to only 15.2 days."