Why Are Some Dogs So Ugly? 11 Facts to Know (Explained)

Why Are Some Dogs So Ugly

Looking for an answer, why are some dogs ugly than others? You might’ve heard that ugly dogs have a special short-nosed or flat-faced and hairless body when it comes to ugliness.

Why Are Some Dogs So Ugly?
Some dogs look so ugly because of genetic deformities and selectively breeding for centuries. Breeders of all dogs have spent years and even lifetimes attempting to maintain and develop their beloved dogs. Unfortunately, breeding may not always positively affect dog breeds, and it’s not surprising that now some dogs evolve so ugly or weird than others.

Let’s take a look at some specific ugly dog breeds.

There are a lot of interesting facts to mention when we’re talking about ugly dog breeds.

Here Are Some Specific Ugly Dog Breeds

Chinese crested, English bull terrier, and bulldogs are from those breeds, who changed their physical appearance due to the selectively breeding for years, that seems ugly now. But the Peruvian Inca Orchid and Xoloitzcuintli (Xolo) are the pure ancient hairless dog breed that appears ugly naturally.

Let’s take more close look at those breeds


The Chinese Crested is the most famous dog on the list-of-ugliest in the world due to its exotic aspects; this breed has smooth, soft skin, and its head, ankles, and tail have a few flowy manes; which make them look so ugly than other Chinese dog breeds.

Most people think that these are the Chinese breeds, but that’s not the truth.

Chinese Crested dogs don’t really come from China. They evolved from African or Mexican (no one is certain which), but these hairless dogs were reduced in size by the Chinese.

The Chinese bred the dog for its excellent rating abilities aboard their ships, where Chinese Crested accompanied Chinese sailors on the high seas as early as 1530 to use them as living heating pads.


The weirdest physical feature of the Bull Terrier is its head, which is a long, egg-shaped head that slopes in the front into a Roman nose. Which makes them look ugly in the name of the world’s most strange face dog.

This dog is now well-known worldwide for having an egg-shaped head, but the breed did not start that way. 

The English Bull Terrier originated as a bull-baiting dog until the sport was outlawed, and later, it became a fashionable companion for gentlemen.

This breed was originally a cross between a terrier and a bulldog and inherited traits from both. 

That meant the powerful, wide jaws and face of a bulldog with the longer snout of a terrier, which led to a chunkier, flatter face than other terriers.

The Bull Terrier in the mid-19th century typically had a natural stop that has managed to disappear and turn convexed that you see today. These days they’re a family companion and show dog.

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The English Bulldog or British Bulldog is a flat-faced brachycephalic breed! The breed is affected by Brachycephalic Airway Obstruction Syndrome (BAOS) due to genetic mutation, that is why most people think English Bulldog looks quite uglier than other brachycephalic dogs. (Some people also think that poodles are ugly too).

The English Bulldog also started as a bull-baiting dog in England in the 1200s and throughout Europe until the mid-1800s. 

Now, their agility has almost disappeared with their new body type. 

During the years of breeding, now English Bulldog has a more extended chest, muscular, wrinkled body with shorter legs, flattened face, and a distinctive pushed-in nose, which also causes many health issues in this breed. Such as they have to use excessive effort to breathe. 

Ugliest Hairless Dog PERUVIAN INCA ORCHID 

Peruvian Inca Orchid breed can be hairless or coated as-well-as a rare dog breed, which seems quite similar to Xolo because of their hairless body. But they aren’t entirely hairless__they have little puffs of hair on their heads and tails, which makes them uglier than the coated ones. 

The Peruvian Inca Orchid is an exotic blossom sighthound that developed in Peru. The breed is agile, clever, swift, and excellent hunters that first appeared in Moche pottery in 750 AD. 

They were also depicted in Chimu, Chancay, and Incan pottery. The Chancay people used the dogs as companions, and some pottery even depicts them in sweaters. 

Ugliest Hairless Dog XOLOITZCUINTLI (XOLO)

The Xoloitzcuintli is also called the Mexican hairless dog, which is the ugliest ancient hairless dog. Xoloitzcuintli also has some similarities to Chinese Crested, such as they also have thin hair only on their heads, feet, and the ends of their tails. 

It is an ancient breed that traces its roots back to the Aztec’s time, making the breed at least 3,500 years old. 

According to the Xoloitzcuintli Club of American, the breed name is a combination of the dog god Xolotl and the Aztec word Itzcuintli, which means dog. 

Xolos originated in Mexico and is the national icon and cultural symbol. Till today, they are still traditional home and hunting companions.

There is one more fact; that you didn’t know about them that Hairless Xolos typically have an incomplete set of teeth, as compared with most coated dogs that have complete dentition.

Plus, unlike other dogs, the Xolo is a robust, healthy, natural dog breed and slightly rare dog breed. The Xolo breed was nearly extinct, but Today, these ancient dogs are experiencing a revival.

How Many XOLO Dogs Are There Today?

There are approximately 30,000 Xoloitzcuintli (Xolo) worldwide. And fewer than 1,000 are there in the United States. By the time the Xolo was-officially-recognized in Mexico in 1950, the breed was nearly extinct. Today, however, these ancient dogs are experiencing a revival.

The leading cause for decreasing in the population of this breed was the Aztecs! During ancient times Aztecs raised two domestic animals, Xoloitzcuintli (Xolo) and turkey, as a much-needed protein source in their diet. 

On the other hand, their association with pagan culture was not embraced by the arriving conquistadors, whose acquired taste for dog meat almost drove the breed into extinction.

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As well as, the arrival of European breeds did just as much damage.

But to revive the breed, in the mid-1950s, a team of dog experts embarked on an expedition into the remote countryside to find surviving dogs. 

Eventually, ten identifiable Xolo-like dogs were-located, and they formed the foundation for the breed’s revival. For a breed long associated with the finality of death, it was the marvelous resurrection.

What Are Those Ugly Dogs Called?  

It is not specified yet what these dogs are typically called. But ugly dogs are commonly known as the hairless breed and brachycephalic breed that has short-nosed and flat-faced. Plus, Chihuahua and Chinese Crested breeds are on the top of the ugliest dog’s list, as these two breeds won the “World’s Ugliest Dog” titles most of the time.

You can easily see many hairless breeds out there, such as American Hairless terrier, Xolo, Argentine pila dog, Hairless Khala, Peruvian hairless dog, Jonangi, and the popular one is Chinese crested___I guess you already know about that!

On the other hand, brachycephalic breeds such as English and French bulldogs, bullmastiffs, Pugs, Shih Tzus, Pekingese, etc. 

These breeds generally look pretty different than any other dog breeds, but sometimes these breeds are also born with deformation, which makes them more ugly___but cute than usual. Even with the ugly-looking face, they still get the chance to perform in World’s Ugliest Dog Contest to show their true beauty!

Let’s get into it and see what exactly the World’s Ugliest Dog Contest is, so you can also participate in this contest if you own an ugly-looking cute dog.

What Is National Ugly Dog Day?  

What Is National Ugly Dog Day

National Ugly Dog Day is an annual contest, which is typically-held in the fourth week of June, crowns one lucky dog as “The World’s Ugliest Dog.” And the winner’s human gets $1,500, a trophy, and a free trip to New York City.

You must participate once if you have an ugly-looking cute dog or any other dog! So you’ll also celebrate the imperfections that make all dogs special and unique.

This annual contest takes place in Petaluma city, California, as part of the Sonoma-Marin Fair, where judges decide which of the dogs entered in the competition is the ugliest in the world.

The contest has been going on since the 1970s every year on 20th June. And the Dog Contest has gotten an increasing amount of media speculation over the years, even how lousy the name of the contest sounds. 

Plus, the contest makes those ugly dogs famous instantly overnight on every social media platform because dog-lovers are all around the world who share pics and videos to celebrate the ugly beauty of that dog. 

You must be wondering now, who won the “World’s Ugliest Dog” contest and who owns the ugliest dog? Let’s dig deep and see who they actually are? 

Who Won The World’s Ugliest Dog Contest? 

Many dogs won the contest, and some also won the World’s Ugliest Dog Contest multiple times. The winning list is quite extensive; that’s why I only rounded up the top 11 winners. Let’s see who are those lucky 11!

1. Zsa Zsa, Breed English bulldog
Zsa Zsa again won the 2021 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest and took home a trophy.

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2. Scamp the Tramp, Breed Unknown
This little stray boy with untamable hair and stubby legs won the 2019 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest and took home a trophy and a $1,500 cash prize.

3. Zsa Zsa, The English Bulldog
This 9-years old girl with weird exposing underbite teeth and long tongue won the 2018 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest and took home a trophy and a $1,500 cash prize.

4. Martha, The Neopolitan Mastiff
This 125-pound big 3-year-old girl with flappy jowls won the 2017 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest and took home a trophy and a $1,500 cash prize.

5. SweePee Rambo, The Chinese Crested Mix
This 17-year-old girl won the 2016 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest and took home a trophy and a $1,500 cash prize, as well as she also won second place in the year 2015.

6. Quasi Modo, The Pit Bull-Dutch Shepherd Mix
This 10-year-old boy with spinal birth-defects won the 2015 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest and took home a trophy and a $1,500 cash prize.

7. Peanut, The Chihuahua Shih Tzu Mix
This 2-year-old girl with physical deformities like deformed lips and eyelids won the 2014 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest.

8. Walle, The Beagle Boxer Mix
This 4-year-old boy with an oddly large head and duck-footed won the 2013 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest and took home a trophy and a $1,500 cash prize.

9. Mugly, The Chinese Crested
This 8-year-old boy from England with a short snout, beady eyes, several unkempt white whiskers, and the first dog from outside the United States won the 2012 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest.

10. Yoda, The Chinese Crested Chihuahua Mix
This 14-year-old girl with a malformed nose, short tufts of hair, protruding tongue, and long, seemingly hairless legs won the 2011 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest and took home a trophy and a $1,500 cash prize.

11. Princess Abby, The Chihuahua
This little girl with a hunched back, mismatched ears, and a missing eye won the 2010 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest and took home a trophy and a $1,500 cash prize.

Who Owns The Ugliest Dog?  

Yvonne Morones owns the World’s Ugliest Dog, known as Scamp The Tramp, and Scamp The Tramp is the winner of World’s Ugliest Dog Contest 2019. The scamp has still occupied the title of the World’s Ugliest Dog Contest because due to the covid pandemic, no other contest has been yet.

Yvonne Morones from Santa Rosa discovered the Scamp The Tramp on PetFinder, an online pet adoption website, in 2014. And that where scamp first came into his life. 

Yvonne Morones said that “I ran across Scamp’s photo, and it was just like Tinder for dogs.” I swiped right and fell in love with that face.” Morones adopted a scamp from a Los Angeles animal shelter and took it home. 

On the other hand, there was one more ugliest dog in the world that known as Sam. The Sam was a blind pure-bred Chinese Crested hairless and toothless dog he won the World’s Ugliest Dog Contest three-time 2003–2005. Now he is dead, which makes the Scamp The Tramp ugliest dog till now.

There may be more dogs out there that don’t have a cute look to them. They may be scraggly, old, or missing patches of hair. But, the beauty is in their unconditional love and the happiness they bring to our lives.