DirecTV Adds DogTV Channel for Canine Viewers

Premium Network Meant to Comfort Animals While Owners are Gone

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DirecTV, the largest U.S. satellite-TV provider, is adding distribution of DogTV, a $5.99-a-month premium channel aimed at canine viewers.

Under a multiyear agreement between DirecTV and DogTV, the channel will be available on the satellite service in the third quarter of this year, according to a statement by DogTV today. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

DogTV, which calls itself the first and only TV network for dogs, is designed to comfort animals and stave off loneliness when pet owners are out of the house. The DirecTV agreement marks the biggest distribution deal for the nascent channel, which is currently available online for $9.99. It's also being offered as an on-demand channel to Cox Communications subscribers in California for $4.99 a month.

"We know dog parents are constantly seeking solutions to ease the loneliness and boredom of their stay-at-home pups, and now they will be able to access DogTV through DirecTV," Gilad Neumann, chief executive officer of the channel, which is operated by PTV Media Ltd., said in the statement.

Although the channel is aimed at dogs, it will allow some advertising to humans, according to Beke Lubeach, U.S. marketing director at DogTV. "When we launch the channel on DirecTV this summer there will be limited opportunities for advertising during the daytime which is the prime viewing time for the dogs," she said in an email. "We will have advertising opportunities for short and long form in other day parts."

A spokesman for DirecTV confirmed that it will begin carrying DogTV on Aug. 1.

To keep dogs stimulated, DogTV broadcasts "scenes with and without other animals, animation sequences and a variety of moving objects," the network said on its website. It also offers relaxation programming with soothing music. The colors and audio are adjusted to fit a dog's senses.

DirecTV's 20 million human customers "opens the door for more viewers to experience our innovative programming for dogs," Mr. Neumann said.

~ Bloomberg News and Ad Age staff ~

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