“It was on the way home that I knew I made the right choice,” she said. “There we were, two strangers in a car on the way home to a new start. Bob Marley was playing One Love and I looked over and little Scamp was bobbing his head. It was like he knew he had found his forever home.” Scamp beat out 18 other contestants who showed off their droopy tongues, bowed legs, perpetually confused looks and other strange attributes. The contestants got to walk the red carpet and preen for adoring fans at Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds in the heart of Northern California wine country.
Second place went to Wild Thang, a Pekinese with beady eyes and a disturbing tongue, owned by Ann Lewis of Los Angeles. Third place went to Tostito, a Chihuahua with damaged ears and a droopy tongue. Tostito, owned by Molly Horgan of Falmouth, Maine, also won the Spirit Award. The People’s Choice Award went to Meatloaf, a bulldog mix with protruding teeth owned by Denae Pruner of Sacramento, California.
INTERESTING FACT ABOUT YOUR PET: Forty-five percent of pet owners say they occasionally (or frequently) buy presents for their animals.
Organizers say the contest is about bringing attention to the needs of rescue dogs. Most competitors were rescued from kill shelters, found abandoned or seized from unscrupulous breeders.
“What we’re really doing is we’re showcasing dogs that have been rescued and adopted and brought into loving homes,” a competition spokesman said. “These are sort of spokesdogs for adoption.”