Miranda Lambert Explains Passion For Rescuing Animals

Miranda Lambert might be the most-awarded country music artist in history, but music isn't her only passion. The 34-year-old is just as devoted to rescuing animals as she is to her day job.

“Rescue dogs are special,” Lambert tells Parade. “They know you’ve saved their lives.”

She should know. The "Keeper of the Flame" singer has eight of her own dogs, which she lovingly calls her children: Delta, a chihuahua-pug, found at a Sonic drive-in; Cher, also a chihuahua, found in a dumpster; Waylon and Jessie, sibling retrievers found in a box on the side of the road; Thelma and Louise, Great Pyrenees siblings she found on a farm; JD, a Pyrenees found on the road, and Bellamy, a mini golden retriever mix she adopted from a shelter.

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(Photo: Instagram/mirandalambert)

Lambert, who is currently on her co-headlining The Bandwagon Tour with Little Big Town, leaves the three big ones on her 400-acre property in Tennessee, but the five little ones join her on the road, making for some interesting fan exchanges.

“Just the other day, my dog wrapped around a girl’s legs and she was like, ‘Are you Miranda Lambert?’” she recalls.

The Texan, who credits her love of animals to her parents, who always were bring home strays, also tries to talk her friends into adopting four-legged friends as well.

“They all know it’s coming!” Lambert says. “I always encourage people to adopt instead of shop [at pet stores]. So many homeless dogs are getting overlooked because of breeders ... I’m a pretty great matchmaker, I have to say. I tell them, ‘There’s always room for one more.’”

Lambert does plenty more than just try to get her friends and family to adopt. She started her MuttNation Foundation charity, along with her mother, Bev, in 2009, to help animals in need. So far, she has raised almost a million dollars to help more than 200 rescue shelters all over the country. In addition, she runs the Little Red Wagon program, where concert attendees have a place to drop off toys, food and other supplies at each tour stop.

Not that Lambert just offers her name and wallet. When Houston was battered by Hurricane Harvey last year, the singer-songwriter worked personally to transport pets from dozens of rescue shelters, helping raise more than $3.5 million.

“Music and mutts are my two passions,” Lambert concedes. “So using music to raise money for these animals is pretty amazing.”

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To find out more about Lambert's MuttNation Foundation, or to make a donation, visit their website.

Photo Credit: Getty images/Rick Diamond