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Posted on Feb 1, 2012

Puppy Bowl Behind The Scenes: Puppies!!!

We've shared our backstage photos from Animal Planet's Piglet Pep Squad and the Kitten Halftime Show with you and now it's time for THE PUPPY portion of the Puppy Bowl! Hold on to your hats, because there is an absurd amount of cute on the field.

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This is what a Puppy Green Room looks like. There were puppies everywhere!

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Upon entering it, you think you're going to be able to act professionally and hold it together...

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AND THEN YOU MEET THESE GUYS!

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This guy in particular, and everything inside you melts and you become a blubbering ball of Awwww.

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And this girl!

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So cute you photograph her twice.

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And then you turn around AND HERE'S THIS SLEEPING LUMP OF ADORABLENESS.

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"Hi hi hi hi hi hi hi hi hi. I'm a puppy! Hi!"

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This guy was shy.

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This girl was ready to play!

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But not everybody was sleepy or clinging to their person.

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"Adopt me!"

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"Don't adopt this guy, adopt me. Look how good I can stand on him."

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"I'm bigger than I think I am."

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"I'm a big dog. I'm really tall."

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This is Cates, she works for BuzzFeed too and has a heart for dogs that's about two sizes bigger than most people's.

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And another one! It becomes too much.

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This is the Human Green Room where we did a lot of waiting for puppies to arrive or between takes on the field. It smelled of french fries and Sterno candles and there was an amazing tailgate spread that Gavon took full advantage of.

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This year's Puppy Bowl will also feature a tweeting bird (har har). Getting the bird to actually peck on the keypad wasn't really working though...

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Especially when the bird flew into the rafters and wouldn't come down. The Human Green Room was cracking up about this.

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Here's the Puppy Bowl control room where all the shots are called. They got mad at me for taking this photo, so hopefully it's ok to post here. It must be hard to be so close to all the puppies, but not able to pet them.

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Then we were allowed out into the taping room to see the puppies in action. The camera crane (as it's about to do in this photo) would swing around wildly and nearly hit you in the head if you weren't paying attention.

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The field was, much like with the Kitten Halftime Show, total chaos.

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This is the *NEW* Ref Dan Schachner, making his first appearance at this year's Puppy Bowl. How he remained focused and was able to give penalty cards to faces as cute as those, I'll never know.

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This is an Animal Safety Representative (right) from the Humane Society. It's her job to make sure that no puppies were harmed or treated unethically during the filming. If a puppy was acting scared and hiding in the corner or being bullied, she would make the call to remove them from the field.

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Penalty for humans on the field!

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Animal Safety Representative might be the best job on earth. She was really nice and told us that there are only a few handful of people who do her job and that they get to travel all over the world and hang out on movie or tv sets, watching out for the animal stars.

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The puppy cam harness kept slipping off the puppy's shoulders, so between takes someone would go on field to set it straight again. I can't wait to see the footage from puppy eye view.

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"Did you see that? I tackled the camera pup!"

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Not every puppy went on the field at the same time, so a lot of their day was spent waiting to be called on.

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At the end of the day, the puppies all posed for their Starting Line-Up portrait. This little guy was camera shy.

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After they were done filming and having their portraits taken, the puppies all headed back to the Puppy Green Room until they were OKed to go home or back to the shelter. Every puppy had a person in charge of them, making sure they were where they were supposed to be.

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Oh hi Dakota!

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This is where the mushy puddle of goo that used to be my heart gushed out of my chest and started dripping on my shoes.

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Cates and I formed a plan to co-adopt Dakota and share the walking/feeding/snuggling responsibilities.

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This is Hilary (right), she's a producer for Animal Planet and one of the nicest people on earth. Her job is pretty amazing sometimes.

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"If I stay really still, maybe Hilary will forget that I'm here and accidentally take me home."

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It was an exhausting day!

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"You're leaving, aren't you? I can tell. No, it's cool. I know you're busy, have places to go, and that in an hour you'll be at a computer trying to find me in the ASPCA registry to see how you can adopt me."

Photos by Amy Sly

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