While two NFL teams compete in this year's Super Bowl, the Houston Texans very own Kirby will be competing in the 18th annual Puppy Bowl. Kirby will be among the 118 adorable puppies chasing each other and scoring touchdowns for a chance to win the "Lombarky" Trophy in the three-hour event. The Puppy Bowl will also air a special feature on Kirby highlighting his visits to NRG Stadium on Gameday and a practice session with Texans DB Justin Reid.
Kirby, a male Labrador retriever, joined the Texans last July at 10 weeks old and was named by Texans fans through a voting contest. He is currently training to be a service dog in a partnership with America's Vet Dogs. Once his training is complete, Kirby will be placed with a veteran or a first-responder with disabilities.
The Texans, in partnership with Kroger, have hosted Kirby at community events, meet and greets and select home games as part of his socialization and training. Texans staff, players and fans have enjoyed interacting with Kirby throughout the season.
Following his early training, Kirby will be returned back to the America's VetDogs campus in Smithtown, N.Y. to begin his formal service-dog training. At the conclusion of his training, the Texans Pup will be matched, at no cost, with a veteran or first-responder with disabilities.
America's VetDogs, a New York-based nonprofit, provides service dogs to veterans and first-responders who have experienced physical injuries, PTSD, hearing and vision loss, and seizures. It is the same organization that trained and placed service dog Sully H.W. Bush with President George H.W. Bush.
PUPPY BOWL XVIII can be streamed on discovery+ and Animal Planet on Sunday, February 13 at 1 p.m. CT.
The Texans Pup presented by Kroger stopped by to meet Texans Co-Founder and Senior Chair Janice McNair. The Texans Pup, recently named Kirby after a fan vote, is a future service dog from America's VetDogs.