What is the ugliest dog in the world?

Most questionable-looking dogs induce an exclamation of astonishment, a verifiable gulp of amusement, or even a grunt of disbelief, but few of our canine companions are so ugly that they'd make you groan. Now entering: The world's ugliest doggo.

Some dogs are ugly, but in a cute way.
Some dogs are ugly, but in a cute way.  © Unsplash/Matthew Henry

Beauty is widely accepted to be something that the beholder sees, something that only requires an individual to believe it to be true.

It is the very definition of subjectivity, but the same can't be said about its grottier cousin.

Cuteness can't hide the truth about the ugliest dogs in the world, as endearing and sweet as they may be.

Animal rescuers issue serious warning over "cruel" painting of turtle shells
Animals Animal rescuers issue serious warning over "cruel" painting of turtle shells

What is the ugliest dog in the world, and who were its owners? What's the ugliest dog breed, and who are the runners-up for this most prestigious of animal records?

Let's find out!

What is the world's ugliest dog?

Few dogs get the honor of being featured in Time magazine, but after Peanut was crowned the world's ugliest dog in 2014, he nabbed that honor. As a rescue dog from Greenville in North Carolina, Peanut suffered tremendous abuse before he was rescued by Holly Chandler. The problem? He had been injured in a fire, and was showing the scars.

The World's Ugliest Dog contest was held at Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma, and Peanut was entered. He was two years old when he won this incredible award. Speaking to KPIX, Chandler told a shocking story of neglect and a horrific fire that burnt the eyelids from Peanut's face.

"He doesn't have lips anymore," Chandler said. "His eyelids are also gone. So he can't close his eyes and, therefore, his eyes water. The tears drain into his nose, and so he has nice little snot bubbles because of it. So it's great, that adds to his character."

Having won this most prestigious of awards, Peanut was given $1,500 of prize money, which then was reportedly used to help pay for other pets' veterinary bills.

Peanut actually won an award for being the ugliest dog in the world!
Peanut actually won an award for being the ugliest dog in the world!  © Instagram/Worldsugliestdog2014

Why is Peanut the world's ugliest dog?

Peanut looks the way he does due to his horrific childhood. The beautiful pooch suffered greatly at the hands of neglectful owners who abused him - an ordeal which ended in a horrendous fire that caused the severe burns that make him look the way that he does.

It's genuinely a story you would expect to see from a sappy movie on Lifetime, but Peanut's story couldn't be more horrifying – and real. Luckily, with an award for world's ugliest dog, at least Peanut has something to be proud of. Well, his new owners are certainly proud at least.

"He's my baby. I guess I don't see him every day as being that ugly. But I guess the judges thought so."

Who was Tuna, the other ugliest dog?

Tuna is a remarkably ugly doggo!
Tuna is a remarkably ugly doggo!  © Instagram/Tunameltsmyheart

Tuna, a Chihuahua-Dachshund mix, became an internet sensation when her Instagram blew up. She now has more than 2 million followers.

Yet this darling doggo didn't become famous because she was sweet or adorable, but because she was hilarious ugly. In fact, this dog can make some faces that would make even the grumpiest grandpa chuckle.

Crowned by the internet as the world's ugliest doggo, the characterization seems awfully unfair. While Peanut has a logical (albeit morbid) reason for being so ugly, Tuna is actually a perfectly normal dog that just seems to look a little bizarre at times. In fact, the appropriate internet lingo might be "derpy".

Missing dog found covered in tape and thrown into a dumpster!
Dogs Missing dog found covered in tape and thrown into a dumpster!

Tuna makes faces and often reacts in very strange and very amusing ways, making for some top-tier Insta-tainment. He's no Hollywood star, sure, but a superstar in his own right.

He even has his own book, called "Tuna Melts My Heart: The Underdog With the Overbite". (Maybe a good summer read?)

Born in 2010, Tuna is a dog that has held the heart of many a passionate internet explorer. At twelve years old, may he live long and prosper.

What is the ugliest dog breed in the world?

The answer to this question is quite short and quite obvious: The pug is clearly the ugliest dog breed in the entire world.

With its short, squat legs, and squished face, these creatures are ridiculous in every meaning of the world. These little ones also suffer from widespread health problems that affect their breathing.

What's the worst thing about the humble pug, though? Despite being insanely ugly, arguably dumb, and just plain silly, pugs are some of the cutest and quirkiest little dudes around.

You've gotta show the love - and these ugly little guys deserve – and need – every bit of love we can throw their way.

What's the deal the ugliest dog contests?

There are many different kinds of dog-related contests. Some measure a dog's ability to jump over things, scoring them points and giving them awarding for their agility training-related abilities. Others award them for being incredibly ugly. The gap between the two is a large one.

Ultimately, the ugliest dog award might go to an animal that has proven beyond a reasonable doubt that not all dogs are beautiful, but not to an animal lacking any cuteness at all. Indeed, Peanut the ugly doggo is one of the cutest and sweetest dogs out there. And regardless of appearances, he – like all pups – deserve a lot of love.

So don't throw shade Peanut's way. This is a dog dedicated to being cute, without the need to adorn that cuteness with any additional trimmings. Show him and his owners some love, along with all our four-legged friends!

Cover photo: Unsplash/Matthew Henry

More on Animal World Records: