LeAnn Rimes captured the heart of the world with her extraordinary voice and talent when she debuted at the age of 13 with her multi-platinum album, Blue. She has won two Grammys (and was the youngest person ever to do so), three CMA Awards, and twelve Billboard Music Awards. Her hit single, How Do I Live is the longest charting song to be on the U.S. Hot 100. Now 25, she continues to write and record best-selling albums and sells out tours all over the globe. She has also emerged as a talented songwriter, writing or co-writing many of the tracks on her new album, Family. Her latest single Nothin’ Better to Do is quickly climbing Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart. But with all of her accomplishments, her heart is devoted to her husband, Dean Sheremet, and their nine pets.
AF: How did you get all your animals? Tell us about them.
LR: I have seven dogs and two cats: three Pomeranians, two Chihuahuas, a Boston Terrier, a German Shepherd and two Bangle cats. My ex-boyfriend bought me my very first dog, Raven. He had a dog that Raven was like a brother to, so when we broke up, they were separated. I decided to get another dog, a Pomeranian named Jude. That was Dean’s and my first dog together. There was a pet store right by where we went to breakfast every morning, and I’d always walk in and be like, “I’m taking home this dog today.” I started collecting animals, I just love animals.
AF: Who takes care of all of your pets?
LR: When we’re home, Dean and I are very good about taking care of all of them, but we have a wonderful assistant Courtney who takes care of them when we’re gone. And my mom helps out so they’re like her little grandchildren!
AF: Will you introduce us to them?
LR: There’s Precious, one of my favorite dogs. She’s a Chihuahua; about five and a half years old. She travels with me a lot and is a really good traveler. Precious is the temperamental one of the bunch to say the least! Her name really fits her well. She can be very prim and proper, sometimes a little bitchy to the rest of the bunch. She’s fun, she will let you play with her and she likes to cuddle.
AF: Where did you get her?
LR: I bought her from a pet store in L.A. I hate saying I got animals from a pet store, but I was so young. I just hadn’t thought about adopting from shelters and naively kind of thought an animal is an animal, I didn’t know enough about animal rescue yet. So, now that I do, my next animal will come from a shelter.
AF: Tell us about your very first dog, Raven.
LR: Raven is the dog I got as a gift eight years ago from my ex-boyfriend. He’s now Dean’s step dog, he still loves him to death. Raven is one of my favorite dogs. He’s been with me through everything for the last eight years so he has a very special place in my heart.
AF: And the other dogs?
LR: Jude is our biggest Pomeranian. He’s about 16 pounds, which is very big for a Pom, and he’s just full of white and brown fur. He’s a beautiful dog! Jude loves to go on walks in the park and he’s got this bubbly baby personality that no matter how old he gets it never goes away. He’s seven-years-old. Nick is another one of our Chihuahuas, he’s a Deer Chihuahua, so his legs are very strong. He’s so cute, and the wimpy one of the bunch. All he wants to do is cuddle! We really love him. He’s not the baby, but he acts like it. Harley is our Boston Terrier and only has one good eye. We came home from a CMA Awards Show around midnight and Precious, well, what we think happened is that Precious bit the corner of Harley’s eye. We rushed her to the vet and they saved the eye. She can’t see out of it, but they saved it. Texas, our German Shepherd, I got him when he was two and a-half from Slovenia and is a trained attack dog, but he is still the sweetest dog. Especially with all of these little dogs jumping all over him constantly.
LR: I wanted to feel safer in my home. Being a celebrity, I had a need to have something in my house that wasn’t a gun, something protective like that that made me feel safer. Even with my husband here, I wanted a bigger dog in the house. I was skeptical, but then I realized what a sweet animal Texas is. He loves kids, small animals and is a great addition to our family.
Virgo is our Teacup Pomeranian. We kind of rescued her, this is my rescue dog. We bought her from a pet store, but it was one that doesn’t take very good care of their animals. She was born on my birthday, August 28, so we named her Virgo. She almost died right after we brought her home because she was so malnourished. We nursed her back to health and now she’s a beautiful little dog. And then there are my cats, Allie and Amy, they’re Bangle kitties. They’re very aloof. But we adore them.
AF: What breed of dog is your husband?
LR: Dean’s very close to our German Shepherd, so I would have to say a German Shepherd. He’s very athletic, always running and wanting to be outside. He’s very loyal and smart.
AF: What is your favorite place to take your dogs in Nashville?
LR: We either go to Percy Warner Park or Radnor Lake. Jude, Raven and Tex are the ones that like to go for walks. We take them to my dad’s farm a lot, too.
AF: Which animal charities do you work with?
LR: I worked with Pedigree, who just moved their headquarters here to Nashville. I did a dog walk the other day, which raises money for our Humane Society here. I led the dog walk and had a blast; tons of people showed up and walked.
AF: You and your husband seem to have such a wonderful and loving relationship. What’s your secret?
LR: I guess just not to take everything too seriously. Laugh at each other and laugh at yourselves. We laugh a lot together; we have a lot of fun.