Every year, the eyes of the world are fixed on the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show as the best of each breed for that year duking it out for supremacy in the canine kingdom. Less well-known– and certainly less prestigious– is the annual “World’s Ugliest Dog” competition. Unless you love ugly dogs, in which case a lot of people are cheering as a two-year-old mutt named Peanut has emerged as this year’s winner.
Despite his energetic demeanor and cuddly smile, Peanut’s story is actually pretty sad. Peanut comes from Greenville, North Carolin and was horribly burned as a puppy, resulting in hairless patches all over his body, including his face. The silver lining to all this is that Peanut’s owner says that she plans to use the $1,500 prize money to help raise awareness for animal abuse by footing vet bills for similarly abused dogs.
While it would seem like a badge of shame, Peanut here will wear his honor proudly–mainly because he can alert others to the horrors of animal abuse without them having to sit through getting lectured by Sarah MacLachlan while her treacly song “Angel” plays. Way to go, Peanut. You’ve made ugly dogs everywhere proud to call you their champion.