Not Just Another Pretty Face

updated 04/22/1985 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 04/22/1985 AT 01:00 AM EST

Her name is Twiggy, and she's uuugly. Ugly enough, in fact, to take home an engraved silver dog bowl for winning in the purebred category of the fifth annual Ugly Dog Contest sponsored by the Press-Telegram in Long Beach, Calif. Her owner, Patsy Dawson of nearby Paramount, had observed other less revolting canines triumph over the past few years and was convinced that her pooch could win. "I took a couple of snapshots and sent them in," says Dawson. "They asked me to bring her right down."

But four-pound Twiggy, 7, is no mutant mutt. She's a rare breed, a purebred Chinese Crested (no joke—someone actually wanted this look). Patsy and her husband, Jon, a Navy engineman first class, inherited the dog from Patsy's mother when she moved into a no-pets-allowed apartment building. "I didn't want to touch her at first," recalls Patsy, "but she wanted so much attention it was hard to resist."

Others, however, find Twiggy quite resistable, so much so that Patsy doesn't take her out for walks much any longer. Twiggy's hairless body has warts, and sometimes she has severe acne because of her sensitive skin. In the sun, Twiggy, who is pinkish in color, burns so easily that Patsy has to treat her three times a day with sunscreen. Children have been known to drop their schoolbooks in alarm upon sighting Twiggy, and once, when she barked through the car window at a drive-in, the waitress screamed and burst into tears. "It makes me a little sad," says Patsy of some people's reactions. "Twiggy thinks she's beautiful."

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