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Why Miranda Lambert Met Joe Exotic Before He Got Famous



There’s no one hotter than Joe Exotic at this moment. Netflix’s miniseries, Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness, turned the former zookeeper into an overnight sensation. Singer Miranda Lambert ran into Exotic years ago, and they’re telling the story to everyone.

An Interesting Encounter

On Twitter, Lambert shared a few photos of her and Exotic from 2017. “Backstory: During Hurricane Harvey, the MuttNation Team went to Houston to help relocate existing shelter dogs to free up shelter space for animals separated by their owners,” Lambert stated on Twitter. “MuttNation asked for volunteers who could transport some dogs from Houston shelters in Oklahoma, where there was room and they could be treated and adopted.”

In 2009, Lambert founded MuttNation with her mother Bev, to help animals find a safe home. Lambert and her mom are proud mothers of 15 rescue animals. For this mission, a certain volunteer came forward to help out. Little did Lambert know, this would turn out to be a future publicized felon. “Some guy named Joe volunteered his trailer and staff. Now I know it’s ‘Joe Exotic.’” Fortunately, Exotic never invited Lambert to his Joe’s Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park. “I’ve never been to his zoo, and I didn’t even know he had tigers. OBVIOUSLY, I’d never condone animals being treated badly,” Lambert also said on Twitter.

<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet”><p lang=”en” dir=”ltr”>Here’s a little Monday memory for y’all. <a href=”;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#TigerKing</a> <a href=”;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#WayTooPrettyForPrison</a> ???‍♀️ <a href=””></a></p>&mdash; Miranda Lambert (@mirandalambert) <a href=””>April 13, 2020</a></blockquote> <script async src=”” charset=”utf-8″></script>

A Little Too Exotic

Joe Exotic, whose real name is Joseph Allen Maldonado-Passage, opened the park back in 1999. Dedicated to his deceased brother Garold Wayne Schreibvogel, the park harbored a plethora of big cats. In fact, Exotic is known as the biggest breeder of big cats in the United States. Outside of being a zookeeper, he dove into the political field. Prior to meeting Lambert, he tried running for President of the United States. After their encounter, he ran for Governor of Oklahoma in 2018.

Exotic got into hot water in 2019 after being convicted of animal abuse and plans to murder Big Cat Rescue CEO, Carole Baskin. With nearly 20 charges in his name, Exotic didn’t stand a chance in the court. In January 2020, he was sentenced to 22 years in prison. Filming for Netflix’s Tiger King documentary began in 2014 before the mayhem erupted.

Photo Courtesy: [MuttNation/YouTube]

Lambert Is Saving The Day

To this day, Lambert still works with MuttNation. Earlier this year, she donated $160,000 in grants to several animal shelters across the country. Some of the animal shelters include New York’s Muddy Paws Rescue and California’s Helen Woodward Animal Shelter. Overall, $1 million in grants have been given to 300 shelters since 2015. 

Through the power of music, Lambert has also helped animals in a big way. At her concerts, the singer holds adoption drives for local folks looking for a new pet. Since 2016, MuttNation has worked on the CMA Fest Adoption Drive with support from Nashville Humane Society. The adoption drive will often feature special activities, including a march through Nashville. 

Because of the coronavirus, Lambert’s tour dates have been postponed for the fall. As expected, the 2020 installment of the CMA Fest Adoption Drive will also take place later this year. Thankfully, the epidemic has proven to be helpful towards multiple animal shelters. Many shelters have been emptied because people wanted a small companion during these tough times. “The updates I’m reading & hearing about shelters being empty is making my heart happy! Thanks to everyone who adopted or fostered a 4 legged quarantine buddy,” Lambert said on Twitter.

When the pandemic ends, it’s unclear whether people will return their dogs back to shelters. Fortunately, Lambert will be there to make sure those furry friends wind up with loving owners.

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