A new ITV show is searching for the nation’s ugliest pets! Production company Spun Gold who are also behind the Alan Titchmarsh show, have launched a search for hideous hounds. The programme will celebrate how much we love our pets, regardless of what they happen to look like!
If your pet is peculiarly ugly then it could become a star of the little screen. Dogs, cats, ferrets and reptiles are all welcome. Any dogs which feature in the show could be sent to California to compete in the World’s Ugliest Dog Competition. Yes there is such a thing!
If you have an unbelievably ugly pet, the closing date for entries is 19 June but we’d suggest this is something you wouldn’t want to do. Read on…
It’s Getting Ugly in California
The World’s Ugliest Dog Competition takes place every year at the Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma, California. The event is a firm favourite and has been running for 50 years. Adoring fans flock to the fair to see the amazing contestants. The winning pooch this year will receive $1500 and a trophy. They will also be flown to New York for media appearances.
The Ugliest Dog on the Planet
The reigning champion is SweePee Rambo, a blind Chinese Crested Chihuahua who takes ugliness to a whole new level. But his victory was shrouded in controversy!
Following last year’s competition, there were reports that an oozing sore had been seen on SweePee and that the judges had awarded extra points or it! Her owner has hit back claiming that it wasn’t SweePee who boasted the weeping sore but rather another dog who entered the competition.
16 hounds competed for the title. SweePee had been the odds-on favourite. This was no surprise considering that this tiny Chihuahua has a monstrous face, no teeth, bowed back legs and a curved spine. SweePee is also bald! The 17-year-old pooch duly won and then the recriminations started.
The Press Scandal
Following SweePee’s victory a local newspaper reported that: “Judge Neal Gottlieb seemed particularly impressed with a sore on SweePee’s leg, noting dogs get extra points for ooze.”
A few days later the paper received an email from sweePee’s owner claiming that his dog did not have sores but that there had been another dog called Icky at the event who did have terrible sores. Unfortunately, the newspaper’s report had inspired a raft of unpleasant comments online and resulted in SweePee’s owner being accused of cruelty.
Television footage of the competition does show SweePee’s owner commenting that a dog had an open wound but it isn’t clear which hound he is referring to.
The judge who had originally referred to the sore was eventually contacted by the newspaper. At this point he decided that what he had seen was a scrape and not a sore. The newspaper’s online report was amended accordingly.
This competition seems to be in the very worst taste. Not only is beauty ‘in the eye of the beholder’ but any competition even hinting at the possibility of making money from a pet’s suffering should be classed as animal cruelty and the person responsible dealt with accordingly with the full force of the Law.
I for one won’t be entering… but then again I have a very cute looking (but savagely vicious) cat!