ANOKA, Minn. -- A little more than two weeks after winning the 2018 World’s Ugliest Dog contest, Zsa Zsa the English bulldog from Anoka has died.
“I’m sad to share that ZSA ZSA passed away in her sleep last night,” owner Megan Brainard announced Tuesday, July 10, on a Facebook page about her dog with a pronounced underbite and lolling tongue.
Brainard told NBC’s “Today” show website that the 9-year-old dog had been staying with her father.
“He woke up this morning and found her passed away,” said Brainard, who called Zsa Zsa’s death “devastating.”
The average life expectancy for bulldogs is 8 to 10 years, according to the American Kennel Club.
On June 23, Zsa Zsa won the World’s Ugliest Dog contest at the Sonoma-Marin Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds in the San Francisco Bay Area community of Petaluma, Calif.
Brainard, who won $1,500 for Zsa Zsa’s victory, said she found the dog - named after the late actress Zsa Zsa Gabor - on a pet-finding site, according to the contest bio.
Dogs in the annual competition flaunt their imperfections - some have hairless bodies, others have lolling tongues. The dogs and their handlers walk down a red carpet. The dogs are evaluated by a panel of judges.
The 2018 contestants included a blackhead-covered Chinese Crested-Dachshund mutt, a bulldog mix with excess wrinkly skin and a Pekingese named Wild Thang.
Last year’s winner was a 125-pound gentle giant named Martha - a Neopolitan Mastiff with gas and a droopy face.
The contest is in its 30th year.