So your kids are asking for a dog again, but you are not really a dog lover. I totally get it!
Let’s be honest. Having a dog is a huge responsibility. It’s almost like having a baby with the amount of care and attention you have to give a dog.
I have a secret for you. I don’t like dogs. But my friend N.E. Colby is helping with spreading the love for animals with my kids WITHOUT getting a puppy.
In this episode we talk about:
- How N.E. Colby’s family has a love and curiosity for animals (even though her husband was attacked by a dog when he was younger)
- Places to go or visit to introduce your kids to animals and grow their for them
- Her book series and the inspiration behind it.
About N.E. Colby
N.E. Colby was born into a military family, she was able to travel and experience many different things. She is a Veteran of the United States Air Force, a mother of two well rounded children, and married to the love of her life.
N.E. Colby has always had a love for animals. From a young age she was rescuing strays and adopting animals that needed a good home. N.E. Colby and her Husband have been able to pass along their love of animals to their children. Taking trips to Zoo’s every year for birthdays and just because days, while talking about the care required of little creatures that cannot care for themselves. Knowing the importance of teaching children from a young age that caring for living things other than themselves will have an important impact on all relationships in their future.
While always having a love for reading with her children and the desire to write children’s books, N.E. Colby decided that the best book to write was something close to her heart. The Junior Zoo Vet series draws from her greatest inspiration, her children and their love of Zoo’s.
- Blog/Website: https://www.juniorzoovet.com
- Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/JuniorZooVet
- Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/juniorzoovet
- Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/juniorzoovet
- Junior Zoo Vet: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08HB2VPKZ
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Transcript of this episode
Real Happy Mom 0:02
Hey there, I’m Tony and I have an overwhelming passion to help moms navigate motherhood without the overwhelm. I went from struggling with motherhood and losing my identity, to be productive and living out my version of being a happy mom. On the bottom half of my podcast, I interview real moms and experts to help you navigate raising children self care, time management, and so much more. So if you’re ready to get rid of the overwhelm, and start being a Real Happy Mom, join me inside the Real Happy Mom podcast. Hey there, and welcome back to another episode of the Real Happy Mom podcast you are tuning in to Episode 115. And today, I have a very fun guest who is now a friend of mine. And in this episode, we are talking about pets and growing love for animals. Because I am going to share a quick Fun fact with you. I know some of you guys are probably going to not like me anymore, but that’s okay. I’m just gonna be honest. But I don’t really care for animals that much like I’m not a dog lover or cat lover like I don’t really do pets like the most I’ll do is go fish and bass push in it. And I am surrounded by a bunch of dog lovers at work. And I know sometimes they’re sad because they’re like, Oh, don’t you want a dog? And they get this look like no I don’t, I really don’t. So today, I wanted to bring in eagleby on so that she can help me and help you if you have a child that once you have pets, but not really sure about bringing in a brand new dog, but also just kind of, you know, exploring how we can have love for animals too. And I will be honest, since this episode, I have a better appreciation for animals. And I have been getting out and seeing more of them and actually making it a point to go out and see them. Now I will tell you this I do like seeing animals in the wild i think is beautiful. I just don’t want them in my house that that’s just me. And please do not send me hate mail because I’m not a dog lover. But that’s just me. I don’t like dogs like adult. Sorry. Let me go ahead and jump on into this week’s episode so that you can learn more about how you can go love for animals without having to get a puppy. So let’s go ahead and jump on in. All right, welcome to the podcast in is good to have you.
N.E. Colby 2:29
Thanks for having me.
Real Happy Mom 2:30
Yes, yes, you are going to be bringing this wonderful topic about getting our kids in love with animals. And this is one that I mean for my right? We got on I told you that. Like if you talk to me like on my job, like you’ll think that I’m an animal lover, because I’ll be like, yeah, yeah, yeah, your dog and you took them to the bed, bla bla bla, but I don’t really care for dogs. And I will say in my defense, especially for dogs, this is my defense. The reason why I don’t like dogs in particular, is because almost 100% of the injuries I’ve seen on kids like them having scars on their face is from the dogs attacking them. So that’s why I don’t personally like them. Because I’ve seen way too many scars on kids faces from dogs, but there’s some cute ones out there. And I’ll say cute.
N.E. Colby 3:23
I’ll tell you, my husband was attacked by a dog when he was younger. He got bitten in the face. And that’s really common because you know, smaller dogs are great in that space, you know, and fortunately, that did not deter him from loving animals as much as I do. So, um, he has a little bit more cautious.
Real Happy Mom 3:45
You know? Yeah, yeah, definitely. No, I totally get it. I’m still not there yet. I’m working on it. I wanted you to share just a little bit about you and your background on how you got to where you are now.
N.E. Colby 4:01
Okay, um, so I write children’s books. And a big reason why I got started in this is because one I always wanted to write books. I love writing. That’s my biggest love of life outside of my family. And I just thought for years, I’m going to write a book, I’m going to write a novel. And every time I got like a chapter or two into it, I just couldn’t see myself finishing it. I just that wasn’t me. And then I always wanted to incorporate my children because they’re my biggest, like, passion for things that I do, you know, and I didn’t want to start anything that I couldn’t take them with. So when I was at a nine to five job, obviously you can’t take your kids with you because you have to do your job, you know, and I didn’t like that approach. I wanted to be an entrepreneur and have my family with me for the journey. And the way that I thought that I could do that was to start doing a children’s book series and so far, it’s been really good. They’ve gone to all but two of my events. And they’ve been right there talking about the book and their love of animals with me. And so it’s been really good.
Real Happy Mom 5:11
You know, so I love that. And I didn’t even think about making it so that the kids can come because I know so many times my kids and I, can I come with you to work and I’m, like, too many cooties at work, you can’t come? No, I love that. I love it. Love it.
N.E. Colby 5:24
It’s a challenge sometimes, especially when we first started doing it. I wasn’t sure how they were going to respond in that environment in that setting. And I’m so glad that we just jumped in and did it because they were so natural, and just so outgoing, and just talking with people, you know, kids are so much easier to talk to them parents sometimes. And you know, and it was just such a good
Real Happy Mom 5:48
experience for all of us. Nice. Now, you have an undeniable love for animals. And I’m just wondering, how can we introduce that love and curiosity for animals that with our kids? So that
N.E. Colby 6:01
is a great question. One of the things that I found, for myself naturally, like growing up, we always had animals, dogs, guinea pigs, cats, like there was just always animals in our space, right? Um, I think one of the biggest things, for those who may have hesitation towards getting a dog, you know, is to start to study the animals and get to know their personalities and traits, like that was a big thing for us when the kids were of right age. And that just depends on every household what you feel is appropriate age wise for your kids to have a pet. But when we started, we researched the temperament if they were a family dog, if they were super active, shedding was a factor for my husband, but not so much for me, because I have a lot of hair. So I shed all the time. It’s you know. But I think, trying to do research as a family, because if you do it by yourself, you’re going to only go and gravitate towards what’s for you. And then if you incorporate your kids, they’re going to start to get curious, well, if a dog is not a good fit, or is a good fit, what is or isn’t a good fit, like some people are cat people, I love cats, my husband doesn’t. You know, we had to do some research as a family to figure out what was a good fit for our environment and our personality, because I didn’t want to just throw it like a parrot would not be a good fit for our environment. Because we can’t dedicate that time to a bird that needs that kind of social interaction. And that bonding connection, as much as we would with a dog or a cat who understand like, Okay, I’ve got humans, but then I have my own space. So that was, that would be how I would, how we’ve looked at it.
Real Happy Mom 7:58
So now I love how you said to start with studying personalities and traits, because I’ve never even thought of doing that, especially when it comes to dogs, because there’s so many different types of dogs out there. And then, of course, with crossbreeding and all the other different things. I’ve seen some wins. And the reason why I know so much is because the ladies that work, they’re really big into dogs, and they’re always like schooling me on, you know, oh, this particular dog, and I’m like, I don’t even know what that is. So I’m constantly googling things like what is that? Like? It was this one dog. I remember my office manager was telling me about his some big, huge dog. And I was like, why would you want to have that big old beast in your head. But I learned that they are like, pretty nice and even temporary, like you were saying, and it will work perfect for someone who isn’t super active and doesn’t have like, you know, hyperactive kids and things like that around. So I love that you brought that up?
N.E. Colby 8:50
Yeah, absolutely. And I think a lot of times, we all at some point or another have gone into thinking, Oh, if I got this dog, it’s just going to be the best dog. Like, we grew up with shepherds and Labradors. They’re great family dogs. They’re amazing. And then we did research because we thought, oh, maybe we’ll try a different breed, you know, and see if there’s another dog out there that fits our personality traits a little bit. I wanted very large dogs. I didn’t want a medium or large I wanted really big dogs. Just because I think they’re super cute.
Real Happy Mom 9:26
Nothing else other than that, they just,
N.E. Colby 9:28
you know, they just tickle me when they run, you know, and my husband was like, I don’t think we should do that. It’s like, well, let’s get to St. Bernard. Lo and behold, that’s the breed that he ended up getting hit by. So that was definitely off the table. And so once we started doing our research, it’s like, it really opened up our eyes to the different breeds and the temperaments and the personalities of the different dogs. Some dogs are chasers, you know, so that’s something you have to take into consideration when you have littles that run around the house. Like That that was a big research for us because there were a lot of grades that I didn’t know that actually had that tendency.
Real Happy Mom 10:06
Yeah, I didn’t even think about that part to the ones actually like the chase, I just know about the ones that are a little bit more aggressive. I’ve seen and then ones that are a little bit like loman. It’s kind of like cats are they’re really chill and even tempered. Those are the ones that I tend to hear the most about, at least from that work. Because like I said, they’re always schooling me on on dogs and dog breeds and all that.
N.E. Colby 10:30
So that’s good that you have this ladies that have school you I think now you have to take that information and share it with the kiddos and see what works for you guys as a whole unit.
Real Happy Mom 10:40
Yes, for sure. Now, I’m just curious now outside of the home outside of having pets, what are some? Or where are some places that we could visit outside of the zoo to see animals with our kids?
N.E. Colby 10:52
It’s a really good question too. So I like to spend time in Germany, my time with the kids at our local shelters, we have spent some time doing that. There are a lot of organizations actually. And if you look locally, you’re gonna find that there’s a bunch of organizations that you can get involved with, and some of them right now due to certain restrictions that are in place, you’d have to research to see what is allowed at this time. But usually, what they’ll do is they’ll say, Oh, yes, if you want to donate your time, that’s fantastic. And they usually have like a list of things that they need the extra help in. And that’s a really good way to also get involved. And we do it for more than just cats and dogs. There’s other organizations that are very close to where I live. There’s a possum rehabilitation organization, as well as a bad nonprofit organization. And they have different programs that you can get involved in or offer different ways to help. And I think that that’s also really key because it allows you to see the needs of different animals, maybe not just the domestic ones that were accustomed to, but outside of that in the much larger world that
Real Happy Mom 12:03
we live in. Yeah, I like I didn’t even think about possums.
N.E. Colby 12:12
I know ours are so good. We have raccoons, and you can’t leave anything out. We put up lengths to deter them as like a natural way to let them know like nope, there’s people here still can’t come in the yard.
Real Happy Mom 12:30
I like I don’t like that. I need to tell my husband about that. trying the lights because I promise. I was like really scared for a while because I’m like, what is going on outside? Yeah, and some little critters getting into trash can. So yeah, no shame. Yeah, no, not even a little bit. And then the bats too. I’m like, ooh, bad. It’s like that’s different.
N.E. Colby 12:51
We have brown bats that fly in our backyard from tree to tree doing their thing. And I love it. Because that’s what mosquitoes and I’m a big fan of that.
Unknown Speaker 13:00
Mosquitoes drive me crazy,
Real Happy Mom 13:01
please those mosquitoes because they they like to eat me. So
N.E. Colby 13:08
mosquitoes bite when I saw that there was a it’s a little bit of a drive from where we are. But when I saw that I got very excited because we love bats. Bats are super unique. And they’re just so cool. That was a big, big score for us on our find.
Real Happy Mom 13:23
Oh, yes, for sure. I even if you told me like, Oh, yes, one in Jacksonville, I think I would definitely go check it out just for myself, because that just sounds super interesting. Yeah, and
N.E. Colby 13:32
the great thing to a lot of these nonprofit organizations, they have programs for younger kids, kids that can be accompanied by their parents or an adult to participate to educate children, or families and people individually. So that way that information is, you know, because a lot of people think that’s have a preconceived notion about like the type of critters that they are, which is some cases, true, but in a lot of cases, it’s not as 1100 species of bats.
Unknown Speaker 14:05
Unknown Speaker 14:05
there’s a lot to know.
Real Happy Mom 14:08
Yes. And you were telling me before about how you went on a trip to and you’re able to see some of these animals in nature, like as they are. So I just want you to share that because I thought that was so cool, too.
N.E. Colby 14:21
We went to bed Arizona, and we had to drive through and it’s in Arizona by the Grand Canyon. And it was remarkable because there’s they have an Arctic Wolf, I never would have seen an Arctic wolf outside of its natural environment. And it was just so unique to just see this creature just walking by our car. Obviously the windows were up to precaution. But you get to drive through and you get to see Buffalo and bears and it was just such a unique experience. And then shortly after that 40 minutes from Arizona is the Grand Canyon. And when we went to the Grand Canyon We thought oh my gosh, one unnatural environment like this is just remarkable and breathtaking on its own. So we’re getting ready to leave. We were walking down the this trail and it mile marks back like years. So it goes, I think up to 100 million years ago in time or something like that. I can’t remember how far back it goes. But it was so cool. So we’re walking back and we’re like, okay, after this guys, we’re going to go home, we look over the cliff, and a California condor comes sailing right above. And it was just the most amazing scene there in the no put it in perspective a little bit. There are less than 500 California condors left in the world in the wild. To see that was jet with my family was just such a unique and I get goosebumps every time I tell the story, because it was just it just means so much to me to be able to see such a rare, unique sighting. I never would have seen had we not gone to a place but you know, and even that that to go to where they are the chances of still seeing one at that time, who, you know, never would have happened. I would have guessed in my lifetime. But it did. And I’m so grateful for it.
Real Happy Mom 16:14
Yeah. So that’s definitely another place that we could take the kiddos is out to some of these national parks and things like that, I think. I think a lot of times we think about it Oh, just for the scenery, but you forget that there’s other animals and critters out there living out there, too.
N.E. Colby 16:28
You know, it’s Yes, you say that my dad always tells me nobody ever looks up. And I’m so glad that those words resonated with me throughout my years. Because literally, that’s what it was. I looked up and it just came straight up into the sky. And thanks for the sage advice, dad.
Unknown Speaker 16:48
Real Happy Mom 16:51
Now any you have a book jr zubik. And you mentioned it in the in the beginning when we were first talking, and I just wanted you to tell us a little bit more about it. And how you even got to this idea of creating this book, my favorite topic.
N.E. Colby 17:07
When I sat down and decided that I was going to write a children’s book, I originally was going to write a completely different topic. But it didn’t feel right. Because my kids and I and my husband, we love going to the zoo, we love animals every year, at least once a year we go to the zoo for our birthdays. That’s just our traditions, too. And so I started thinking about how I would like to take that and make that something to write about my kids and their experience. But I didn’t want to do it just like our experience at the zoo. I kind of wanted to make it like something that was theirs that they did you know, even though we don’t own a sale, which would be cool, but we don’t. I wanted to kind of make that as our series. And I didn’t want to just write about one animal because there’s so many amazing animals, I think that are a little bit underrated. In our day to day life, you know, or even at zoos, my first book is Jr. See that in the eye. The eye is not a very commonly known animal, especially when you’re talking about lions and tigers and elephants. and wanted to make sure that we incorporated that and gave educational components to it to let people know, there’s more to it than just this unique looking animal. What
Unknown Speaker 18:23
N.E. Colby 18:23
can I get from it? That was something that was important to include was the education, the story that shows us the relation between brother and sister, my two kiddos, and to be able to express that multiple series are welcome the whole series. Yeah,
Real Happy Mom 18:44
now you brought up that it is a series. So I was just wondering why it was so important to create this book and make it into a series
N.E. Colby 18:53
important for the book factor. Because I wanted to include my kids, I want my family involved. Everything that I do, I really try to make sure that we are included together. I mean, we obviously have our own separate things that you do. But something this big, I really wanted to make sure that they were with me through this journey. And we even do it where the books have a little bit more meaning to us. So we take our family and our very close friends and we use their names for the main characters of the animals in the book. So the name of the AI in this story is Isabella, who is a very close friend to us. We’ve loved her so much. She’s an amazing kid, and she’s just fantastic. So we wanted to make sure that they came along in the journey with us too, because that was really important to all
Unknown Speaker 19:41
N.E. Colby 19:43
This series because again, there’s just so many animals I wanted to talk about and really put out there like otter butterflies, even we did some insects into the book to do that because those are all part of our environment in our world. Honestly, a lot of it does to highlight animals that you don’t hear about like the dole. The dole is a rather unique animal that not very many people know about or have heard about. And it’s just, I wanted to make sure that conservation only me, you know, that these are animals that we’re aware of, because they do impact our world so greatly, maybe not our immediate environment where we live today. But they are there and they do make a difference.
Real Happy Mom 20:29
Yeah, definitely. Now, if we are wanting to get our hands on this book, and get into the series, where can we get it,
N.E. Colby 20:39
there’s a couple of places you can find it. So you can go to my website, www dot Jr’s event.com. I’m also on Amazon, as well as Barnes and Noble. And I am on Goodreads librarything. Book of the day.org. As there’s just a few places that you’ll be able to find it. And then obviously, on social media, Facebook, and Instagram,
Real Happy Mom 21:04
awesome. And I’ll make sure to include a majority of those links in the show notes. So if you do want to get a copy of it, you will have an easy way to access it there. But Annie, I just wanted you to give us either some words of encouragement, or a motivational quote, first Real Happy Mom. So
Unknown Speaker 21:18
before we find apps,
N.E. Colby 21:21
absolutely. So again, I’m going to steal this one from my dad, if you can’t tell him a little bit of a daddy’s girl. This one my dad says it’s the little things in life that count. So I used to always look for those big moments like those wow moments, but I didn’t realize that those little moments of lead led up to those big moments. You have to take the good little journey to get to that great, amazing journey. Don’t ever underestimate those little vows because they are so important and so special.
Real Happy Mom 21:55
And yes, so so true. Now, any Where can we find you online? If we want to connect with you? I know you mentioned Facebook and Instagram. But what are your handles out there?
N.E. Colby 22:11
I’m sorry, say that? I
Unknown Speaker 22:12
Real Happy Mom 22:13
was saying I’m working. We didn’t know you’re good. Where can we find you online? If we want to connect with you? I know you mentioned Facebook and Instagram. But I was wondering what those handles were that we could connect with you on. So there’s just
N.E. Colby 22:24
channels, right? They’re just juniors do that. You’ll find me on that on both. So Papa juniors do that for Instagram and Facebook.
Real Happy Mom 22:33
Awesome. So I’ll make sure to include those links in the show notes in a thank you so much for coming on and sharing all this with us. There’s a lot of fun. Yeah, I learned a lot. So thank you. You’re welcome.
N.E. Colby 22:46
Thanks for having me. This was great.
Real Happy Mom 22:49
Now that does it for this week’s episode of the Real Happy Mom podcast to find the links in the show notes. Make sure you head over to Real Happy Mom comm slash 115. And if you haven’t already, make sure you tune in on Tuesday for another full episode as well as Thursday for a mommy’s hack Thursday where we have some little bite sized episodes here for you. So if you’ve enjoyed this episode, I want you to do me a favor, rate and review wherever you listen to his podcasts. And especially if you’re listening to this episode on Apple podcasts, leave me a rating or review there that helps me out so much and I’ll be so grateful. Now if you’re listening right Tony and I don’t do Apple, I don’t have our podcast. That is fine. Take a screenshot of you listening to this episode and put it on your Insta stories or Facebook stories so that we can share the message and get the message out to more moms about the Real Happy Mom podcast. Now that’s it for this episode. tune in on Tuesday for another full episode. Take care and what thoughts
Transcribed by https://otter.ai