Miranda Lambert poses with Tiger King’s Joe Exotic before he was thrown behind bars for hiring hitman and killing tigers

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COUNTRY singer Miranda Lambert raised some eyebrows when she posted a series of throwback pictures with Tiger King star Joe Exotic on Monday.

The 36-year-old Grammy winner posed with Joseph “Exotic” Passage, 57, his ex-husband John Finlay and former staffer, Kelci “Saff” Saffery – who had his arm bitten off by a tiger in the Netflix series.

Miranda and Joe worked together to save dogs after Hurricane Harvey in 2017
The country singer claimed she did not know who Joe Exotic was at the time
Joe helped transport rescue dogs from Texas to Oklahoma

The Tin Man singer stood happily with the Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park crew when they volunteered to help her dog rescue MuttNation Foundation three years before their show would be #1 on streaming platforms.

“Here’s a little Monday memory for y’all #TigerKing #WayTooPrettyForPrison” she captioned the throwback’s with a reference to her track title with singer Maren Morris.

Immediately after the pictures were posted to Miranda’s accounts, she was met with fan backlash as no context was provided to go along with the post.

“That’s not a pic I would be proud of let alone post on social media. Very disappointed,” one fan tweeted.

Many fans were upset Miranda posed with the animal abuser
After fan backlash, Miranda explained it was a volunteer effort

Another wrote: “Surprised that you would post this considering you love of animals???? Odd!”

“I’ve been a fan of yours for 10+ years, but he killed innocent and healthy tigers…” a follower wrote alongside a crying emoji.

After fan outrage, the Texas native then went on to explain the reason behind the photo-op was due to a joint volunteer effort after the devastation of Hurricane Harvey in 2017.

“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.

Miranda founded MuttNation Foundation in 2009 with her mom Bev
Getty Images – Getty

“MuttNation asked for volunteers who could transport some dogs from Houston to shelters in Oklahoma, where there was more room and they could be treated and adopted.

“Some guy named Joe volunteered his trailer and staff. Now I know it’s ‘Joe Exotic’ I’ve never been to his zoo and I didn’t even know he had tiger.

“OBVIOUSLY I’d never condone animals being treated badly,” the dog lover tweeted.

Joe reportedly evacuated and transported around 300 dogs from the Houston area back to his home state of Oklahoma.

The Tiger King star was secretly filmed by the Humane Society abusing animals
Joe is currently serving a 22 year prison sentence
The Mega Agency

In 2019, Joe Exotic was convicted on 17 federal charges of animal abuse and two counts of murder for hire.

He is currently serving a 22 year prison sentence for hiring a hitman to kill Big Cat Rescue founder and arch nemesis Carole Baskin.

Earlier this month, undercover video taken by the Humane Society surfaced which appeared to show Joe cruelly abusing animals at his zoo.

The secret video revealed the Tiger King coaching employees at his Oklahoma animal park on how to train the wild animals by brutally beating them.

“We need to make him get along with that fricking liger! So we need to just put them in there and let them beat the s**t out of each other,” Exotic can be heard saying in the video.

The mullet-wearing park owner told workers to beat, drag, and even punch the animals into submission before they were trained to entertain zoo visitors and other guests.

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