In humans, barring a few strange outliers like the impossibly meaty Adam Driver or sensually frog-like Willem Dafoe, the relationship between how cute you are and how weird looking you are is relatively uniformly inversely proportional – that is, the less weird you look, the cuter you get. In dogs, you can plot this graph as a parabola: both extremely weird and extremely normal looking dogs are cute as hell. While the same is rarely true of humans, dogs can be born looking like they barely survived an industrial accident and somehow still go through life being lauded for just how adorable they are. The lucky bastards.

No greater evidence of this exists than the World’s Ugliest Dog competition, held annually at Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma, California. On Saturday, a beautiful beefy English bulldog named Zsa Zsa took out the prize for 2018’s competition, which won her (and her owner) a cool $USD1,500 and a trip to New York.

But Zsa Zsa certainly wasn’t the only dog there. The competition saw assembled a magnificent array of dogs that ranged from being a bit fucked looking all the way through to being very fucked looking. Let’s take a look at some of these other adorable, hideous contestants.

Tee Tee

Pictured: Gizmo from ‘Gremlins’ has had a hard few years. (Source: AP)

The inconsistently filled-out body hair and beady black eyes on this chihuahua say ‘I live in the sewers with a family of rats that have adopted me’, but that string of pearls on the collar show nothing but class.

Martha

Pictured: There are probably whole ecosystems hidden in this dog’s skin folds. (Source: AP)

Martha the Neapolitan mastiff looks exactly like the sort of dog you would expect to find riding the rails through 1920s Mississippi with an itinerant blues musician. It’s incredible that she managed to find the time to attend the competition when I assume scientists would be desperate to study her for being the first animal made entirely of jowl.

Wild Thang

Pictured: Someone’s mullet animated by dark magic into the form of a dog. (Source: EPA)

Wild Thang is a two-year-old Pekingese which likely spends every waking hour of its life trying to dislodge the many, many things stuck to it thanks to the sheer force of static electricity built up by its fur.

Daisy

Pictured: I cannot for the life of me figure out what dog emotion that is. (Source: EPA)

While Tee Tee looks like something that should be cackling beside Jabba the Hutt, Daisy is by all appearances a relatively normal-looking chihuahua. Logically it can only mean that 14-year-old Daisy was entered because she has a hideous personality.

Mrs Kravitz

Pictured: The body language of a dog with tragically low self-esteem. (Source: AP)

Mrs Kravitz’ facial expression in this image mirrors my own reaction to this: why would you insult this beautiful beast by entering it into an ugly dog competition. That’s just a normal dog with a weird eye and the cowed posture of an animal that just realised its owner thinks it looks weird. Your owner might not, but I love you, Mrs Kravitz.

Meatloaf


Pictured: Those eyes are too human. No thanks. (Source: AP)

Meatloaf the bulldog mix might have fooled its owner and the judges of the event, but I know with absolute certainty that that is some other kind of creature in a dog costume. You can tell from the wrinkles – the suit doesn’t even fit properly.

Himisaboo


Pictured: This is what happens if you leave your dog in the sun too long. (Source: AP)

Nominally a Chinese Crested and Dachshund cross but, as we can all plainly see, Himisaboo is just Iggy Pop reincarnated into a leathery, intermittently hairy dog (given that Iggy Pop is still alive, I’m not quite sure how he pulled this off). By all appearances, this dog survived a chemical fire and I couldn’t be happier for it.

Rascal Deux

Pictured: I… I’m not sure. (Source: AP)

I know absolutely nothing about this dog except that it is absolutely on its way to steal your girl.

Image: AP / Jeff Chiu