The annual Sonoma-Marin Fair happened last week, ending Sunday, and Friday was the big day for the fair's nationally celebrated World's Ugliest Dog competition. Taking home first prize this year was this little guy, named Scamp the Tramp.
In addition to missing teeth, Scamp is kind of follicle-y challenged, with none of his black hair growing in, and all his gray hair coming in frazzled, forming natural dreadlocks down his back.
There are few places where a dog having beady eyes, no teeth, short stubby legs and an “extremely round body” are considered positive traits, but the Ugliest Dog Contest is one of them. And this year, Scamp the Tramp took home the title. https://t.co/hpXpdiTTuT— The New York Times (@nytimes) June 23, 2019
As owner Yvonne Morones of Santa Rosa explains in her bio for Scamp, "Scamp was found as a stray on the mean streets of Compton [and] I rescued him at his last hour from a Los Angeles animal shelter." He was apparently found by a shelter licking Taco Bell wrappers. Scamp has been with Morones for seven years, and, she says, "No amount of hair conditioner can calm down his tresses!"
Scamp was actually a runner-up in last year's competition, and as Morones tells BuzzFeed, she's entered him four years in a row. This is his first win.
Scamp also "works" as a social therapy dog, and helping with a reading class for first-graders, as the New York Times reports. Morones has been something of a regular at this annual competition, and she's had two previous dogs take home first place. She says the key is that they have to be "naturally just odd looking."
Morones adds, speaking to the Times, "All of us moms think our dogs are beautiful... I looked at the competition and I go, ‘That dog’s going to win.’ I’ve called the winner every year. I didn’t think we had a chance at all."
Despite the competition seeming to be about us laughing at these mangy pooches, the mission behind the event has always been about encouraging pet adoption, and rescuing imperfect animals.
The reigning champ was Zsa Zsa, an English bulldog who actually died in her sleep only weeks after last year's win, at the age of nine.
It is with heavy hearts that we share that Zsa Zsa, this year's winner of the #WorldsUgliestDog Contest passed away in her sleep earlier this week at the age of 9. She charmed us all with her slobbery good-looks and sweet demeanor. May she rest in peace. pic.twitter.com/3IuSwaK0EF— Sonoma-Marin Fair (@SonomaMarinFair) July 11, 2018
You can see all of Scamp's competition here.
As of today, Scamp and Yvonne are in New York City for some media appearances.
Top photo via Sonoma-Marin Fair