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Wild Thang The Pekingese Wins The 2024 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest

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They say third’s time a charm, but not for Wild Thang! The eight-year-old Pekingese wins this year’s World’s Ugliest Dog contest after joining the contest four other times.

Wild Thang emerged as the victor after eight dogs vied for the title at the 2024 Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma, California on Friday, June 21.

For winning the contest, Wild Thang and his owner, Ann Lewis, receives a $5000 cash prize and a will be featured on a limited-edition MUG Root Beer can.

Wild Thang is a first-time winner and a 5-time World’s Ugliest Dog competitor. He placed second three times – in 2019, 2022, and 2023, before finally winning the contest this year.

“He was a fan favorite … he’s kind of like the bridesmaid and never the bride,” judge Fiona Ma told the Associated Press.

“He really tugged at our heart strings and deserved to win,” Ma continues.

Sonoma-Marin Fair’s site revealed the story of their World’s Ugliest Dog competition winner this year.

Wild Thang was born and raised in Los Angeles, but recently retired to North Bend, Oregon.

As a puppy, Wild Thang contracted distemper from a rescue foster. “He survived, but not without permanent damage,” Sonoma-Marin Fair revealed.

“His teeth did not grow in, causing his tongue to stay out and his right front leg paddles 24/7.  Other than that, he is a healthy, happy Glugly (glamourous/ugly) guy.”

The Sonoma-Marin Fair also reveals Wild Thang’s purpose in life –  “to promote the necessity of getting your pets vaccinated.”

Other than being glamourous, Wild Thang also has a GoFundMe account to his name to help his fellow Pekingese friends in the war zone in Ukraine find their forever homes and happily ever after.

Sonoma-Marin Fair’s site emphasizes that while the contest is fun and entertaining, it was never started to make fun of dogs.

They describe the World’s Ugliest Dog contest as a “world-renowned event celebrates the imperfections that make all dogs special and unique.”

“The contest speaks to the importance of advocating for the adoration of all animals and the benefits of adopting,” the Sonoma-Marin Fair explains. “Many of the contestant dogs have been rescued from shelters and puppy mills, to find loving homes in the hands of those willing to adopt.”

Other winners included the Rome, the 14-year-old, one-eyed pug who placed second and People’s Choice winner, Daisy Mae from Lafayette, California, Mochi the Chihuhua-Jack Russell Terrier mix, and Poppy the Chinese Crested Dog.

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