By now you might have already heard about Yoda, the Chinese crested and Chihuahua mix who took first place at the World's Ugliest Dog competition this week. She's small, around two pounds, her fur coat is tattered, and her ears are large. She's scraggly, but she's loved. Her owner, Terry Schumacher of Hanford, California, wouldn't change a thing about her adorable Yoda.
The idea of this World's Ugliest competition is kind of sad to me. Am I the only one?
They're animals, and animals have feelings, too, don't they? Dogs are very in-tune with our human world and most pet owners consider their pups part of the family, like a child. I know dogs can feel embarrassed, or remorseful, when they do something wrong and we scold them for it. Can't you just hear that little whimper they let out?
While I don't think Yoda knew exactly that she was in a World's Ugliest competition, and that the award and attention she was getting was because she's more hideous than the other dogs in the contest, but I think that her ignorance, in fact, makes it worse.
If I'm being laughed at, I'd want to know. I'd want to know so I could either laugh at myself, leave the party, or freaking go nuts on someone's car with a baseball bat. Poor Yoda wasn't even in on the joke.
Can dogs feel insecure? Sure! It's a problem dog rescuers share over and over, that their rescue dog is afraid to be in the same room as them, or afraid of other dogs, or afraid of eating. It's because they've felt unsafe in those kinds of situations in the past and have learned to protect themselves. Did Yoda feel insecure on that stage?
Animals are sentient beings that deserve to be treated with respect and love. We would never have an Ugliest Baby competition or a prize for the Dumbest Idiot In the Office because that'd be cruel. I think we should apply the same principles to our furry friends.
You never know ... I've seen enough Disney movies to realize that some dogs can hear and some can talk ... they could exact their revenge!
Do you think the World's Ugliest Dog competition is funny or cruel?
WATCH NBC's report on Yoda's "victory":
Photo via today.msnbc.com