DogTV: Man’s Best Friend Wants Cable

With a new channel aimed at canine viewers, television has finally gone to the dogs. Yeah, we said it.

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Cable executives have high hopes for a new channel targeted directly at a panting, drooling audience — and no, we’re not talking about an adult network.

It’s DogTV — an on-demand cable channel featuring content specifically tailored for canine audiences. After a successful rollout in California earlier this year, the new channel is now available online and hopes to soon have national distribution.

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The idea is to provide entertainment and stimulation for the millions of American dogs who are left alone all day when their busy owners head off to work. “Being home alone all day is boring,” the channel reminds us, with an appropriately harrowing image of a jaded hound slumped on the sofa. As an article on the website of The Telegraph  notes:

The content is scientifically tailored for four-legged audiences, with even the sound, colours and camera angles adjusted to make them more appealing to canines according to the channel’s website.

But the main attraction for dogs is the content. “They love watching other dogs being active on the screen, and other animals” including birds, monkeys and zebras, said Beke Lubeach, DogTV’s head of marketing. The footage includes such masterpieces as Dog Playing In Corn, three Alsatians merrily jumping into a swimming pool; a dog looking noble as he watches tropical plants while a baby gurgles inexplicably; dogs joyously catching balls thrown by kind, gentle humans. NewsFeed wonders, though: what happens when some overenthusiastic viewer tries to jump through the screen to catch the ball? We’re betting that lucky dog’s owner will be leaving him home alone less often.

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