Elwood, the New Jersey canine that drew international attention after winning the 2007 title for World's Ugliest Dog, died suddenly on Thanksgiving morning. He was 8.
"The best part was he did not suffer, he was in my arms and with me," Elwood's owner, 52-year-old Karen Quigley of Sewell, N.J., told CNN.
"I couldn't be more proud that people who haven't met him loved him... I couldn't be more proud."
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Quigley rescued Elwood, a Chinese crested Chihuahua mix, in 2005 after learning that the dog's breeder planned to euthanize him because she thought he was too ugly to sell.
Mostly hairless, save for a patch of white hair on his head that's styled into a sort of mohawk, Elwood's defining feature was his tongue, which was always sticking out.
"He just doesn't have any teeth on the left side of his mouth, so there's nothing to keep his tongue in there. It never goes in. It's out all the time," Quigley said in 2007 at the annual World's Ugliest Dog Contest held at the Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma, Calif.
After winning that competition, Elwood became something of a canine celebrity, even appearing as the main character in a children's book promoting acceptance.
"For a little dog he touched a lot of lives in his short time," Quigley said. "He did a lot of things."
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