Mr Happy Face won first place in the annual “World’s Ugliest Dog Competition”.
But who is the pooch and what did his owner say about him?
Here’s what you need to know.
Who is Mr. Happy Face?
Mr Happy Face, whose pageant biography does not specify his breed but who is believed to be a Chinese crested and Chihuahua mix, was not expected to live long after his adoption.
He was adopted by Janeda Banelly from an animal shelter in Arizona, who gave him a warning before seeing Mr. Happy Face.
Ms Banelly said in a statement that she was warned the dog might be inbred ‘because he was so ugly’ and ‘the shelter staff tried to prepare me for what I was about to see’.
But Ms Banelly went ahead with the adoption of the then 17-year-old dog in August 2021, saying he ‘needed a second chance and deserved to be loved’.
“When I first met him, he was the happiest creature I have ever met. He approached me and chose me,” she added.
“I swore that day that he would be loved so much that he would never remember how awful his previous life had been.”
According to his owner, Mr Happy Face’s hobbies include “being fearless adorable”, invoking his “senior privilege” over other pets in the household, and “eating stinky things”.
Which competition did Mr Happy Face win?
On Saturday, June 25, Mr. Happy Face won first place in the annual “World’s Ugliest Dog” contest, which is a contest held at the Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma, California.
Mr Happy Face’s contest bio read, “I believe this humble soul is also an example, in a subtle way, to help humans realize that even old dogs need love and a family too.”
The event returned this year after being canceled two years in a row due to the Covid pandemic, with this year’s first runner-up being a puppy mill survivor named Wild Thang.
In 2014, Peanut, a rescue dog of unknown origins, was crowned the world’s ugliest dog.
The dog’s owner, Holly Chandler, said at the time that Peanut, then 2, had been the victim of animal abuse and had been injured in a fire.
She planned to use the prize money to help pay other pets’ veterinary bills and hoped Peanut’s victory would bring attention to animal abuse.
The prize for winning Mr Happy Face this year was $1,500 (£1,236.55) plus a trip to New York to appear on NBC’s Today show.
Speaking to NBC, Ms Banelly said: ‘It’s his first competition so he’s a bit overwhelmed. He’s wondering if there are any treats in it!’