Not so long ago, the handsome 8-year-old Siberian Husky was a canine in peril, living in a Pennsylvania animal shelter that was about to be shut down. Now, he has a new family in the Baltimore area and is about to be seen playing doggie football on national TV.
Nanook was one of 50 former senior shelter dogs selected nationwide to participate Saturday in the first ever Dog Bowl, according to Wendy Goldband, a spokeswoman for the Baltimore Humane Society. The show will air at 8 p.m. Saturday on Animal Planet, and pit the valiant Paws team (including Nanook) against the indomitable Tails.
The show is a spin-off of the long-running Puppy Bowl, which is held each year on Super Bowl Sunday and which features two “teams” competing inside a model football stadium along with a “rufferee,” “repawters” and an assortment of chew toys.
“Animal Planet decided to showcase senior pets this year since they have a more difficult time getting adopted,” Goldband said.
Nanook stayed briefly at the Humane Society after officials there learned that the Pennsylvania shelter where he was housed was faced with shutting down and that the animals living in it might be euthanized. Luckily, the Humane Society, a no-kill shelter, had room to offer Nanook and several other dogs. Within days, the good-looking Husky with the outgoing disposition had found a new home with Jeff St. Pierre, an online personality of The Laurie DeYoung Show on WPOC, 93.1 FM.
Goldband said that Nanook is a friendly boy who enjoys his outings to the dog park and who is naturally vocal. A discerning music critic, Nanook is a particular fan of Hootie & the Blowfish, often harmonizing with singer-songwriter Darius Rucker’s solos, to the amusement of his owner.
Which, err, begs the question: Will Nanook “sing” along to the national anthem? You’ll have to tune in to find out.