Each year in the San Francisco bay area, a rather unusual competition takes place. It is the World’s Ugliest Dog contest, which is a surprisingly prestigious title to hold. People travel from far and wide to take part in the contest. Dog owners arrive at the annual event with their beloved pets and take pride in presenting then as some of the ugliest canines found anywhere in the world. It is like a beauty pageant for dogs in reverse as dog owners battle it out with their furry friends to claim the title of the World’s Ugliest Dog.
This year’s winner was Zsa Zsa, a nine-year-old English Bulldog, who competed in the competition alongside her owner Megan Brainard. The pair is from Anoka in Minnesota and Brainard bought Zsa Zsa after finding her on a pet-finding website. While many potential owners may have been put off by Zsa Zsa’s oversized tongue, crumpled face, and serious underbite, it was these features with which Brainard fell in love at first sight. In addition to Zsa Zsa winning the title, her owner received $1,500 in prize money.
The event took place at the Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds in Petaluma, California. In previous years, the event has been held on a Friday night. However, the event organizers decided to move this year’s event to the Saturday night as they believed that it would attract more visitors.
While Zsa Zsa is a worthy winner, she faced some stiff competition for the title of the World’s Ugliest Dog. The dogs who enter the competition range from hairless breeds of dogs to those with lolling tongues. Some of the competition included a Chihuahua-cross called Daisy, Tee Tee a Chinese Crested Dog, and a mixed breed called Scamp. Others in the running for the prize included a bulldog-mix that was noted for its excessive skin and a Chinese Crested-Dachshund cross breed covered in blackheads.
Competitors must strut their stuff with their owners down a red carpet to proudly display their imperfections. Watching on is a panel of judges and an audience of dog enthusiasts. Each competitor is evaluated by the judging panel to decide which of the dogs has the ugliest features. Of course, what one person considers an ugly dog is not necessarily the same as the next person, so nobody knows who will win the competition until the result is announced.
The competition is now in its 30th year, so Zsa Zsa is th 30th winner of the World’s Ugliest Dog title. She takes the crown from last years winner, which was Martha. The 2017 winner is a Neopolitan Mastiff who weighs 125 pounds and has been described as a gentle giant. Last year’s judges were impressed by the ugliness of her droopy face which spread across the stage when she repeatedly decided she needed a lie down instead of showing off for the judges. Her owner also reported that one of the dog’s worst features was excessive gas.
In 2016, the title was taken by Sweepee Rambo, a Chinese Crested Chihuahua. Her owner, Jason Rambo, was exceptionally proud of his dog and claimed that he had girlfriends in the past who had been jealous of Sweepee. Jason Rambo considered winning this prize a true honor.
One strong competitor at this year’s event that was not lucky enough to win the title was Rascal Deux. This hairless Chihuahua has won many other ugly dog titles so was hopeful of taking the title of the World’s Ugliest Dog 2018. In addition to having only a tuft of hair on the top of his head and two different colored eyes, this cute yet ugly dog also has wonky teeth. Despite his looks, this dog is a dude with an attitude and likes to sport sunglasses wherever he goes.
Another ugly dog that was just short of winning the title was Himisaboo. This dog is a Dachshund with a difference as he is hairless except for his head, tail, and toes. This gives the impression that he is a canine punk rocker. He traveled from Oregon in a bid to win the title, but he didn’t quite hit the mark when he met up with such strong competition. Instead, he was pipped at the post by Zsa Zsa who will hold the title until the 31st World’s Ugliest Dog contest is held in June 2019.