Move Over McDreamy: Meet Evan Antin

Dr. Evan Antin is not someone who simply dips his toe in the water. No matter what he does, he dives in with olympic precision and then wins gold. His love for animals and appreciation for the importance of continuing to learn about his craft makes him a rare breed. He is the greatest example of someone who will never work a day in his life due to the passion he holds for his job. He is more than dedicated to the animals he serves and man oh man was it fun to listen to him talk about the things he loves most. 

When did you know working with animals was your path or calling?

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To be honest, I didn’t know really clearly until I was about 19. I knew animals would be a big part of my life whether it was for hobby or for work. I was always really keen on them growing up. I actually started my undergrad career as a business major but by the end of my freshman year I switched to Evolutionary and Ecological Biology. I just fell in love with it. I always had an appreciation for medicine. I’d always had an appreciation for surgery. I’ve always loved animals and learning about them so at that point it all just came together.

How does one go from working with dogs and cats to lizards and the kind of cool creatures I see you treating? 

Before vet school, during vet school, and even now I do a lot of traveling and try to volunteer at wildlife rehab facilities around the world. While I was in vet school I took every single exotic or non traditional animal elective I could. Anything that involved birds, reptiles, or exotic mammals — anything like that, I did all those electives. Any free space in my schedule I would spend at the zoo or a private practice that specialized in exotic animals. 

My last year of vet school I visited about 20 different animal hospitals with the hopes of getting dialed in to the area I wanted to live and work. My priority was to work with exotics. I was really fortunate to land a position at the Conejo Valley Veterinary Hospital. They’ve been around since 1958, but moved locations at the end of 2013. It is a huge new hospital, state of the art facility, nice new diagnostics, and we see exotics. Open 24 hours a day — its the perfect fit for me.

So you’re basically the new Jack Hanna. Are we going to see you on the Tonight Show?

I love doing that stuff! I was actually on the Today Show a month ago maybe. It’s been a really exciting avenue to educate the public and get people excited about animals. I have a blast with it. I was on E! recently for this pre-oscars filming. I got to hang out with the monkey from The Hangover 2 and Doctor Doolittle. She was the cutest thing. 

You’ve been so many cool places. Do you have a favorite? I’m sure its hard to narrow down. Maybe you have an interesting story that sticks out from your travels?

FYI: He has been to: Mexico, Australia, Tanzania, Central America to name a few…

Love Brazil! That place won my heart — freaking incredible wildlife. I was in the Pantanal which is central Brazil... 

E: You’ve heard of the Everglades right?

K: Yeah! 

E: Have you heard of the Pantanal?

K: No!

E: It’s like the Everglades on crack — its much much bigger and has crazy wildlife. I love the Everglades, don’t get me wrong. I’ve been catching alligators and venomous snakes there for years. In Brazil — they have caimans which are similar to alligators. There are toucans, anteaters, and so much amazing wildlife. It has the coolest snakes — going and looking for them in the jungle makes me so happy.

Once I was staying on Komodo Island to which Komodo Dragons are native. It is a protected site because of it. They usually don’t let people stay overnight, but I was with a friend and we negotiated with the rangers to do so. They put us in this extremely rustic old ranger hut with a very vintage mattress. There were literally rats crawling on me. 

K: OH MY LORD. Were you cool with that? You are an animal lover…

E: It’s not ideal. I wasn’t like “thats so cool, little rats on me” — I was glad it was me and not my buddy. He was super down to get in the jungle but if a rat crawled on him he would have wigged OUT. 

The next night, not long before I’m planning to go to bed — I spotted a gorgeous python on this roof slat of another ranger hut. I climbed up the roof — just about to grab the tail of this thing. I’m up on the top, in the roof, on the second story if you will. The beam broke under me. SNAPPED. I fall and somehow land on my feet. I’m searching my body, just sure that I’ve been punctured by some tetanus covered rusty nail but besides some bruising I came out clean. Right after that I found a gorgeous green tree viper. I caught that and it made the night.

Evan almost had beef with a Hippopotamus.  

He started huffing at me and I was between him and the water body, keeping in mind that these guys kill more than any other animal in Africa. That is the last place you want to be with an animal like that — between them and their water. I was able to escape any catastrophe there thank goodness. 

Side note: Hungry Hungry Hippo not so fun IRL. 

Evan almost had beef with an orangoutang. 

I was with an Indonesian guide and my buddy. Big male Orangoutang walking by me — I’m worried he is going to rip my face or arm off or worse…
These guys like to castrate. We tried to avoid eye contact, act non threatening and as if we were apathetic to his presence. Thankfully everything turned out ok. 

Side note: After hearing this story, I’ve never been more thankful to own a beaver. 

Tell me — what do you do for fun? Do you have time for fun? 

I love getting outside. LOVE the outdoors. In Kansas, growing up, we lived by a creek and I used to go out and look for snakes and other kinds of insects. It was my first love. 

Laughs— It’s something I still very much love to do. There are some beautiful areas for hiking where I live now. I search for and catch rattlesnakes and just enjoy the wildlife. It makes me super happy. 

I love fitness. It’s probably a second passion of mine. I didn’t get into Colorado State the first time I applied so for a year after undergrad I had the opportunity to be a personal trainer. No sour grapes — It gave me the excuse to work out everyday and really lay down a good foundation for physical fitness. 

Side note: As I am from Kentucky— could not resist this shirtless photo + horse. 10/10 would ride.

K: That’s surprising! You don’t look fit at all.

E: Laughs — You’re sweet. 

K: Is there anything you can’t do? 

E: I’m one of the most right brained people I know. I’m horrible at communication or reading and writing.  

K: Flips hair. — This is where I come in. 

Side note: Our work out strategies are similar. LOL JK — Fit diss whole pizza in my mouth. 

Have you heard of Netflix?

Laughs — A couple nights a week I relax, just kick it, lay with the animals, and we’ll watch a movie or two. I’m a huge 80’s action movie fan and I just got into westerns. I have the biggest man crush on Clint Eastwood. He’s epic. The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly is one of my new favorites. 

Favorite movie of all time?

Huge Arnold fan. Alien or Terminator — absolute favorites. 

I was most fascinated by the fact that Evan stole a mattress from his roommate back in Boulder. After he confessed to his crime he also told me we ain’t never getting older… 

Kidding, but he did go to undergrad at CU Boulder. 

Truly I was most fascinated by the animation in Evan’s voice that was so clearly displayed when he described the places he’s been, the things he gets to do, and what he looks forward to accomplishing down the road. 

One day a boy will talk about me the way Evan talks about animals: GORGEOUS, INCREDIBLE, FREAKING ADORABLE. 

See actual photo of the two of us below. 

Dr. Antin isssss a sexy vet, but not just because of his fortunate gene arrangement. What makes him sexiest is his willingness to continue learning and his enthusiasm for sharing said knowledge with the world. He has’t let his quickly gained following go to his head. He remains genuinely humble which makes it a no brainer to root for his continued success! Evan Antin is a name that will be sticking with us for years to come. Of this, I’m certain. 

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