Tuesday, 18 June 2024

Clearlake canine takes 'World's Ugliest Dog' honors

Princess Abby, a Chihuahua mix owned by Kathleen Francis of Clearlake, Calif., was named the World's Ugliest Dog at the annual contest at the Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma, Calif., on Friday, June 25, 2010. Photo by Grace Chon of Shine Pet Photos, www.shinepetphotos.com.

PETALUMA – A Chihuahua mix from Clearlake with a hard luck story has become the newest World's Ugliest Dog.

Princess Abby, accompanied by her owner Kathleen Francis, won the 2010 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest before a packed crowd at the Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma on Friday evening.

Helping her clinch the title was the pooch's hunched and peculiar walk due to her back legs being longer than her front.

Princess Abby also is missing an eye, and had an audience-pleasing ability to dance on her two hind feet for treats.

Francis said that Princess Abby was rescued off of Clearlake's streets five months ago, and was found malnourished and flea-infested.

When Francis spotted her, she promptly adopted her.

“She’s my best friend,” said Francis, who recently fell on hard times and works at a local department store for minimum wage. “Abby’s done more for me that I’ve done for her.”

Event organizers reported that entries in this year's contest were up.




The finalists in the World's Ugliest Dog contest celebrate on Friday, June 25, 2010. Photo by Grace Chon of Shine Pet Photos, www.shinepetphotos.com.



Princess Abby won out over a field of 14 tough competitors, among them past winners Pabst, whose underbite helped him clinch the 2009, and Rascal, who comes from a four-dog family dynasty of winning ugliness and earned the title in 2002 thanks, in part, to his wild hair and protruding tongue.

Chinese Cresteds have dominated the World’s Ugliest Dog Contest in the past decade because of their mohawk hair, toothlessness, protruding tongue, lack of fur revealing often unusual skin and general bumpiness.

This year, however, it was all about Abby, who won the pedigree class before going up against the winner of the mutt division, a terrier mix known as Chopper. Comic and contest emcee Jon Reep said Chopper was so hairy that if he was dropped in the gulf, he’d absorb all the oil himself.

Princess Abby then went on to beat Pabst and Rascal and take home $1,600 in prizes.

The contest had three celebrity judges: television celebrity and vet Karen “Doc” Halligan, HawthoRNe television star Christina Moore, and Vertical Horizon lead singer Matt Scannell in addition to Reep, who emceed. Reep has appeared on numerous comedy shows and was the winner of Last Comic Standing: Season 5.

The contest went an extra 30 minutes but the crowd of 3,000 plus stayed rooted to the spot until Princess Abby was declared the winner.

The contest sponsor was House Of Dog, which provided Princess Abby and Francis with another check for $1,000 and a year round modeling contract.

The Sonoma-Marin Fair has been conducting this contest for 22 years and in the last four years has received international attention for it.

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