Elwood the dog, who was once voted the world’s ugliest dog, has died unexpectedly at the age of eight.
His owner Karen Quigley confirmed his death, according to the Independent, and said that while he had been battling with some health issues he appeared to be making a good recovery.
Ms Quigley said: “Elwood made people smile, he made them laugh and feel good. It was wonderful. He will truly be missed.”
Elwood was a mixed breed of Chihuahua and Chinese crested, dark-coloured and almost completely hairless, with the exception of a notable puff of white fur on his head.
Ms Quigley, who lives in New Jersey, rescued him as “the breeder was going to euthanise him because she thought he was too ugly to sell”.
Elwood was crowned the world’s ugliest dog in 2007 at the annual Sonoma-Marin County Fair in California. This led to guest appearances at over 200 charity events and thousands of dollars being raised for animal rescue groups.
Inspired by her dog, Ms Quigley wrote ‘Everyone Loves Elwood’, a popular children’s book that promotes acceptance and kindness towards animals.