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Ruff Business: DirecTV Launches Pay Channel for Dog Viewers

Satcaster believes DogTV could ‘breed’ signups among customer base

Will pooch-loving DirecTV customers bite on this offer?

DogTV — a 24-hour channel aimed at keeping hounds relaxed, happy and well-behaved — launched Thursday on DirecTV channel 354. It’s free to all subscribers for the first two weeks of August after which DogTV will be available a la carte for $4.99 per month.

As for how many customers DirecTV expects to actually pay for DogTV, satcaster thinks it represents an opportunity for incremental biz.

“If the stats on how many people own dogs in the U.S. are any guide, then easily half of our 20 million customers are likely dog owners, and that could breed a lot of sales,” a rep quipped. Separately, DirecTV Thursday posted second-ever quarterly net decline in U.S. customers for the second quarter, dropping 84,000.

SEE ALSO: Get Off the Couch! TV Channel for Dogs Coming to DirecTV

Shows on net, divided into one-hour blocks, include “Morning Relaxation,” “Stimulation” and “Exposure.” According to PTV Media, Israel-based company that produces DogTV, the 3- to 6-minute video clips that comprise the shows were developed over the last several years in consultation with experts in canine behavior.

The one explicitly human-oriented seg, airing at 11 p.m., is “The Story of  DogTV,” featuring pet experts hired by the channel explaining why dogs would benefit from watching the programming.

Customers can order the channel via DogTV’s website or they can call the satcaster directly. Those who register to subscribe to DogTV before Aug. 10 will receive 30 days free through mid-September, plus promotional items including $10 coupon codes for PetBest.com and Dog Is Good.

PTV Media insists that dogs really do watch TV. Company cites a survey conducted by the American Kennel Club and IAMS dog food that found nearly half of dog owners said their pets showed “some interest” in what was happening on the TV screen.

The channel is also available online and through Roku set-tops for $9.99 per month, as well as in the San Diego market on Cox Communications and Time Warner Cable.

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