AHeinz57 Pet Rescue Puppies to Rumble in Puppy Bowl XV

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DE SOTO, Iowa -- AHeinz57 Pet Rescue and Transport took seven puppies and three dogs to the Animal Planet Puppy and Dog Bowl this year.

This is the seventh year the rescue organization has participated in the Puppy Bowl.

They sent in pictures and bios of puppies they had at the time for Animal Planet to choose from.

“They need to be 12 to 14 weeks old. Most of them are probably 12 to 18 inches tall unless they are a smaller breed puppy,” volunteer Mark O’Leary said.

The puppies were accompanied by eight volunteers, and all of them made the drive from Iowa to New York to film the show for three days in October last year.

“Whoever is fostering that puppy at the time, before it goes to its forever home, has the option of coming to New York with us and babysit their puppy through the whole process,” O’Leary said.

O’Leary said one of his favorite parts of the puppy bowl was seeing how the dogs react to each other.

“We each had our own puppy that we were responsible for. You want to be able to work with them and see how they do and make sure that everything goes right for them and they are treated okay,” O’Leary said.

Millions of people will watch the Puppy Bowl on February 3, but it’s not just about the entertainment.

“It’s to highlight the different rescue dogs versus puppy mill dogs, making people more aware of how many rescues there are throughout the country and their needs,” O’Leary said.

AHeinz57 volunteers say they were proud to represent Iowa for the 15th Puppy Bowl.

“It’s good national attention for us. It helps us thrive, it helps with our donations, with our backing and our sponsors and things,” O’Leary said.

There is a watch party at 1 p.m. on February 3 at Doc’s Lounge in Johnston.

The proceeds from the party go to AHeinz57 Pet Rescue.

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