By Kevin Noonan
LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) - In what's no surprise for one of the premiere events in the puppy sports landscape, Animal Planet's "Puppy Bowl" Sunday took the top spot in cable ratings on Sunday, with 10.4 million unique viewers across its 12-hour marathon.
According to Nielsen, the premiere of "Puppy Bowl XI" at 3 p.m. was the No. 1 cable telecast Sunday - excluding sports - in total viewers (2.8 million) and adults 25-54 (1 million). Animal Planet came in second in all of television for the 25-54 demo in its 3-5 p.m. timeslot, trailing only NBC's Super Bowl pre-game coverage.
The furry extravaganza exhibited digital dominance as well, marking the top non-Super Bowl social event on television, reaching more than 17 million people according to Nielsen SocialGuide. Animal Planet's "Puppy Bowl" videos generated nearly 2.5 million streams, with more than 1.2 million accessed via social media, and participation in the "Puppy Bowl XI" fantasy game was up nearly 50% from last year's inaugural Fantasy Puppy League.
As a partner with rescue groups and animal shelters across the country, "Puppy Bowl" was successful in its charitable mission as well, as it was responsible for approximately 425 pet adoptions, according to Animal Planet.