Mediaplanet: When did you develop your passion and love for pets?

Miranda Lambert: When I was a little girl, we always had dogs and stray animals my parents would take in. I grew up in rural Texas, so we always had people dumping all kinds of dogs in our front yard. I was surrounded by animals my whole life and always had a strong connection to dogs. It’s a huge part of who I am, and I’ve never lost my passion for wanting to find homes for all of them.

MP: How has being a pet parent brought joy to your life?

ML: They love you for you. They always greet you with a smile and honestly, I don’t know what I would do without them. It’s so rewarding because they know that you rescued them and gave them a better life, so they will love you unconditionally.

MP: Tell us about MuttNation — what inspired you to start such a powerful organization?

ML: When I adopted my first shelter dog Delilah, I realized how many amazing pups need homes, so we started a charity to promote adoption and raise money to help shelters. We started small, with just my mom and me, along with a couple of girls who were passionate about helping animals. We didn’t want to just focus on one particular organization or shelter. We wanted to improve the lives of as many shelter animals as possible in different ways. I hope we can continue to do more good across the country and help more dogs find forever homes.

MP: What are some common misconceptions about shelter pets and why is supporting them so important?

ML: Shelter pets are so grateful. There are rescues in all breeds if you look hard enough you will find your perfect pup, or he or she finds you, which happens most of the time. I want people to know that shelters are not scary places — they’re actually really fun to visit. Nothing makes me happier than seeing someone adopt a shelter pet.

MP: What does “responsible pet ownership” mean to you?

ML: Get pets spayed and neutered. Treat them as a family member and show them kindness. Also, I think all pets need some activity and sunshine in their life.

MP: Describe a typical day with your furry friends. How do you make time to care for them all?

ML: I have rescue dogs of all shapes and sizes — they’re my best friends. We like to take walks on the farm and play in the pond, and just have fun together. We also cuddle in bed at night where they’ll snore and steal the covers!

MP: What advice would you give to new, current, or prospective pet owners?

ML: Adopt, don’t shop. Dogs are the greatest gift and I think you can only get a certain kind of love from the heart of a rescue dog.