'Dancing With the Stars': What Carole Baskin Hopes To Accomplish Competing on the Show

Dancing With the Stars is back with another season of dancing! Showbiz Cheat Sheet spoke with season 29 competitor Carole Baskin over the phone about joining the cast of Dancing With the Stars and what she hopes to accomplish during her time in the competition. 

‘Tiger King’ introduced the world to Carole Baskin

In March 2020, Netflix released the docuseries Tiger King. The series followed larger-than-life personality Joseph Maldonado-Passage, AKA Joe Exotic. He captivated audiences with his big cat zoo and feud with Carole Baskin, who he accused of killing her husband, Don Lewis. 

To date, there is no evidence of Maldonado-Passage’s claim. What’s more, Baskin has refuted being involved in the disappearance of Lewis.

Now, Carole Baskin is dancing with Pasha Kovalev on ‘Dancing With the Stars’

On Monday, Sept. 14, season 29 of Dancing With the Stars premiered. This season, the contestants include Baskin and other stars like The Bachelorette‘s Kaitlyn Bristowe, One Day at a Time‘s Justina Machado, Catfish’s Nev Schulman, and Backstreet Boy AJ McLean, amongst others. 

Baskin’s first dance was a Paso Doble to Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger” Monday night. 

“I was so excited at the end of the first dance because we absolutely nailed it,” Baskin told Showbiz Cheat Sheet. “It was the best of all of the practices and rehearsals that we had done. Both Pasha and I were really, really pleased with the results.”

Carole Baskin is using ‘Dancing With the Stars’ as a platform to end the abuse of big cats 

Each competitor has a special reason they’re competing for the Mirrorball Trophy. Monday night, McLean said he was doing it for his family. Others, like The Real‘s Jeannie Mai, are competing to challenge themselves and prove they can do anything. 

As for Baskin — she’s competing on Dancing With the Stars to educate viewers about what they can do to end the abuse of big cats.  

Carole Baskin wants ‘DWTS’ viewers to contact Congress about the Big Cat Act 

Baskin’s involvement in the Tiger King docuseries started a conversation about the underworld of big cat breeding in the United States. But the sad truth is big cats are still being abused. 

“The one thing that we just aren’t anywhere close to ending is keeping big cats in zoos,” Baskin explained. “What I’m most hoping [my participation on] Dancing with the Stars will do is give me a platform for sending people to our website where people can contact Congress.” 

Baskin plans to use her time on DWTS to educate viewers on how to end the abuse of big cats in the United States. According to Baskin, viewers can visit BigCatAct.com and enter their information. From there, users will be connected to the representatives in their area. Baskin says there’s a prompt to follow so that the caller can easily request their representative’s support of the Big Cat Public Safety Act. 

Dancing with the Stars Season 29 airs Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

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