Who is Wild Thang? Eight-year-old Pekingese wins 2024 'World’s Ugliest Dog' contest - Hindustan Times
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Who is Wild Thang? Eight-year-old Pekingese wins 2024 'World’s Ugliest Dog' contest

ByShweta Kukreti
Jun 22, 2024 03:04 PM IST

Wild Thang, an 8-year-old Pekingese, has been crowned as the winner of the 2024 World’s Ugliest Dog contest in Petaluma, California.

Wild Thang, an 8-year-old Pekingese, has been crowned as the winner of the 2024 World’s Ugliest Dog contest in Petaluma, California.

Wild Thang, the winner of 2024 'World’s Ugliest Dog' contest, with its owner.(Sumiko Moots / NBC News)
Wild Thang, the winner of 2024 'World’s Ugliest Dog' contest, with its owner.(Sumiko Moots / NBC News)

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Wild Thang recently retired to North Bend, Oregon.

This year's competition, which took place during the 2024 Sonoma-Marin Fair on Friday, witnessed eight competitors, the most of whom were rescues who initially appeared in shelters before finding their permanent homes. The entries included combinations of Chinese Crested dogs, Pugs, and Chihuahuas.

Wild Thang contracted contagious & serious disease

Wild Thang has participated five times in World's Ugliest Dog competitions, but this was his victory.

The dog got an unusual appearance as he contracted canine distemper when he was just 10-week-old. Due to the disease, he was unable to grow teeth, which is why his tongue dangles and he has a muscular imbalance in one leg.

According to Wild Thang's bio, “He survived, but not without permanent damage. His teeth did not grow in, causing his tongue to stay out and his right front leg paddles 24/7.”

Despite having physical issues, he is “a healthy, happy Glugly (glamorous/ugly) guy,” the bio states.

The World's Ugliest Dog contest has been taking place for the past 50 years. The competition is not about making fun of ‘ugly’ dogs,” but to show the world that these dogs are really beautiful. It “celebrates the imperfections that make all dogs special and unique,” as per its website.

Being the winner of the contest, Wild Thang and his owner Ann Lewis will be awarded with$5,000 on NBC's The Today Show.

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Wild Thang recently retired to North Bend, Oregon.(Sumiko Moots / NBC News)
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Wild Thang recently retired to North Bend, Oregon.(Sumiko Moots / NBC News)

Know about other participants and last year winner

Rome, a 14-year-old pug who uses a wheelchair, earned the second spot and won $3,000. Rome was making its debut in the competition.

Rome's owner, Michelle Grady, told BBC News, "I love that [the competition] represents dogs that are imperfect — imperfectly perfect."

Daisy May, a 14-year-old mixed breed rescue dog with a white coat who entered the competition for the first time, placed third and will get $2,000.

She was rescued from the streets at the age of two and she has lost her vision, teeth and hair.

Last year's winner was Scooter, a hairless Chinese Crested puppy who walks with the help of cart. Due to his birth deformity, Scooter's owner gave him to animal control for euthanasia. He is now being looked after by the Saving Animals From Euthanasia rescue group.

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