These weirdly adorable pups are in the running the be dubbed the World's Ugliest Dog

By YOU
25 June 2017

"Here the popularity is in the dog who is by human standards, extremely ugly - and the uglier the better."

It's a pageant of a different kind -- but the prize is just as coveted among a certain set.

The annual battle for the World's Ugliest Dog trophy brings together the most unattractive hounds from all over the world -- and this year's contestants are a sight to behold.

Some of the entrants boast squashed faces, permanently 'hanging' tongues and serious issues with their fur or drool.

PHOTO: Magazine Features PHOTO: Magazine Features

But no matter their appearance, the dogs are all adored by their owners, who will be hoping to take home the $1,500 (almost R20 000) first prize.

Erin Post, CEO of the Sonoma-Marin Fair, said they're proud to celebrate all dogs and pets by showing that no matter their imperfections, they are adoptable, lovable and a great addition to any family.

On top of the cash prize, the winning dog will also be flown to New York City for a variety of media appearances.

PHOTO: Magazine Features PHOTO: Magazine Features

In order to be crowned the winner though, the selected pooch must undergo strict judging criteria.

There are two main criteria judges will be looking out for, head judge Brian Sobel said.

The first will be based on the faces of the audience as they witness the unique appearances of the dogs for the first time.

PHOTO: Magazine Features PHOTO: Magazine Features

The second will be the love the owners shows for their strange-looking pets.

"Incredible bonding stories emerge every year. I have had dog owners tell me their dog has emotionally saved their lives - it is actually powerful to witness.

"People are used to dog shows where beautiful dogs are paraded in front of adoring crowds. Here the popularity is in the dog who is by human standards extremely ugly -- and the uglier the better.

"People love it, clapping and shouting out their pick for the ugliest dog in the world."

-Magazine Features

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