Elwood’s was an inspiring story. In 2007, the Chinese crested and chihuahua mix won the World’s Ugliest Dog contest. In the years following, his owner Karen Quigley wrote a book about him and took him to schools to teach children about accepting and loving those who are different.
On Thanksgiving morning 2013, Elwood passed away unexpectedly. Despite some health challenges in the previous months, he appeared to be doing well.
Quigley had rescued Elwood in 2005, when he was about nine months old.
“The breeder was going to euthanize him because she thought he was too ugly to sell,” Quigley has said. After winning the ugly dog title, Elwood became an online icon and developed a worldwide fan base. During his life, he appeared at more than 200 events that helped raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for animal rescue groups and nonprofit animal organizations.
Inspired by her pet, Quigley wrote Everyone Loves Elwood, a popular children’s book that promoted a message that it’s OK to be different. Quigley said the book shares lessons of love, compassion and perseverance and encourages readers to be kind to animals.
Now that Elwood has passed, she has found another way to keep Elwood’s legacy alive: a scholarship fund for special needs students at Gloucester County College. To make a donation to the scholarship, send a check to the Gloucester County College Foundation, 1400 Tanyard Rd., Sewell, N.J., 08080. Checks should be earmarked “Elwood Scholarship.”
To learn more, visit Elwood’s website.