She is blind in both eyes, her arthritic hind legs are permanently curved and her spine is bent at a 90º degree angle.
It's not surprising poor little Sweepee Rambo was crowned The World’s Ugliest Dog. Dogs from around the world competed for dubious title at the annual contest held at the Sonoma-Marin County Faigrounds in California, US which honours "homely hounds".
But the aged Chihuahua blew the judges away. According to a local newspaper, one judge seemed "particularly impressed with a sore on Sweepee’s leg, noting dogs get extra points for ooze." But her owner Jason Wurtz was outraged at the comment, saying bodily fluids (which were coming from another dog, thank you very much) had nothing to do with it.
He believes his beloved 17-year-old pet won the crown thanks to her “baby-soft freckled skin and legendary blond Mohawk”. “She is a ride or die chick.” The wrinkled, wispy-haired bony Chinese crested Chihuahua was a gift to his ex-wife Wurtz told ABC News. This year was Sweepee's third time in the, er, pageant, but it's her first win.
The contest, which has been running for some 28 years, awards points on the dogs' personality, appearances and, most importantly, how the audience reacts to them.
According to the contests' strict rules, “animals must not be have been intentionally altered to enhance appearance for the purpose of this contest,” -- which is not surprising, considering there's a whopping $1 500 (about R22 000) and a massive trophy up for grabs.
According to Erin Post, CEO of the Sonoma-Marin Fair, the aim of the competition is to show “no matter [the dogs'] imperfections, they are adoptable, lovable and a great add to any family.”
Do you have a pet that could rival Sweepee? Send a pic to firstname.lastname@example.org.