Newly rescued Chihuahua takes 'ugliest dog' title
PETALUMA, Calif. - A Chihuahua's oddly curved back and legs and closed-up left eye earned the 4-year-old rescue dog top honors at the World's Ugliest Dog contest at a Northern California fair on Friday. Sporting a gray, brown and black coat, Princess Abby Francis beat a rough-looking slate of candidates for the prize, including Pabst, a teeth-bearing boxer mix who won last year. Princess Abby shivered in the cool breeze after her win Friday night while nestled in the arms of her owner, Kathleen Francis, who received a $1,000 check at the 22nd annual contest held at the Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma. The victory was a surprise to Francis."I don't think she's ugly at all," she said. "I think she's the most beautiful dog." Francis says she adopted Princess Abby from her veterinarian about five months ago. This was the dog's first such contest since she was found running through the street. Celebrity vet Karen "Doc" Halligan says the Chihuahua's problematic back, legs and eye may be due to being inbred. "She's a poster child to spay and neuter your pets," she said. Contest judges included Halligan, Vertical Horizon lead singer Matt Scannell, "That 70's Show" actress Christina Moore and fair board member Brian Sobel.