Animal competitions are mainstays of the professional contest. The Westminster Kennel Club dog show allows breeders to demonstrate their skill at producing and grooming a perfect dog. The Kentucky Derby shows off the fastest horses in the world. There are International Cat Agility tournaments held in various countries.
And then there are the ugly dogs. For nearly 30 years, the Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds in Petaluma, California has hosted the World’s Ugliest Dog competition.
The requirements are simple: the dog must be ugly. There is no long history of breeding required (many of the entrants are former shelter pets) nor do they need to be particularly skilled. They really only have to stand there and be ugly.
This year’s competition was held on June 23rd.
From the fairgrounds website:
The paparazzi was in full swing for the World’s Ugliest Dog contest as Zsa Zsa, a rescued English Bulldog from Anoka, Minnesota charmed her way into the judges hearts. Nine years young with a swaggering tongue, Zsa Zsa delivered a shower of slobber as she claimed this year’s title.
Zsa Zsa’s adopted parents, Megan and Jesse Brainard share, “she was a puppy mill dog for 5 years in Missouri sent to a dog auction and later purchased by Underdog Rescue. From the moment we saw her beautiful face, we knew we would be her forever home. We are so excited for her, she deserves this.”
As a little nod to this unusual but world-famous competition, some Twitter photos of the past five winners:
Zsa Zsa, an English Bulldog, stands onstage after being announced the winner of the 2018 World's Ugliest Dog contest at the Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma, California, on Saturday, June 23. pic.twitter.com/iwVjejgH9u
— Fox News (@FoxNews) June 24, 2018
Martha, from 2017:
— Digg (@digg) June 26, 2017
Sweepie Rambo, from 2016:
— People (@people) June 27, 2016
QuasiModo, from 2015:
Quasi Modo won first prize in the 2015 World's Ugliest Dog Competition in Petaluma, California pic.twitter.com/LTH9wMM57N
— AFP news agency (@AFP) June 27, 2015
Peanut, from 2014:
— CBS News (@CBSNews) June 22, 2014
Question of the night: Who’s got a dog story?