Country star Kellie Pickler has a soft spot when it comes to animals, both big — and we mean really big! — and small.
The vegetarian singer, who has worked with the ASPCA in the past, recently spent some time working with elephants as part of the reality show “Day Jobs.” The show features country music stars dabbling in unfamiliar careers, such as “elephant caretaker” — an experience Pickler describes as unforgettable.
Pickler met with the pachyderms at the Elephant Sanctuary, a refuge in Tennessee, and was happy to do her part taking care of the animals, at least until it came time to deal with their droppings.
“I loved everything about it, except cleaning the poop. That was my only diva moment. But I think I did what anyone else would have done when they saw that pile!” she says.
She’s also quick to point out that the Elephant Sanctuary is a refuge, not an amusement park. “It’s not a petting zoo or an amusement park. They have thousands of acres and they created a natural wildlife habitat for these elephants to roam. All of the elephants have had trauma, whether it was at a circus or a zoo. Now, for the first time, they have freedom.”
This isn’t the first time the Elephant Sanctuary has made the news. Resident elephant Tarra became a YouTube sensation when she befriended, Bella, a stray dog that wandered onto the sanctuary grounds. The pair were inseparable for years, until Bella passed away last fall, a story Pickler knows well.
“They’re so much like us in the sense that they have feelings – they just don’t have a voice. There was a stray dog that bonded with one of the elephants there, and that elephant protected that dog like it was its own baby. This grown, big-a** elephant was best friends with this little-bitty dog! I’ve never seen anything like that,” she says.
Pickler’s “Day Jobs” episode airs tonight on GAC.
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