Monday, April 6, 2009

An Easter-time request . . .

As Easter gets closer, lots of people are going top go into pet shops and see the cutest little bundles of fluff they've ever seen. They will be laying in groups, running and jumping about, grooming each other and making pieces of hay and lettuce disappear between incredibly precious little mouths. Parents will feel their children tug on their arms, crying, "Mommy! Mommy, look! It's the Easter bunny!" "Mommy, it's just like my stuffed bunny at home, except for real!" The parents will relent when they see the low prices of these tiny creatures, many taken from breeding mills when far too young and barely weaned, sold for as low as $10 or $15 each. They will take them home, and expect to have a cute little toy whose nose twitches.

Imagine the shock when they suddenly realize:

a) This creature is not a doll

b) It chews everything it can reach in order to file its teeth and process information about the object, ie: taste, texture, smell, etc.

c) It can be very anxious and high strung, especially around loud noises, new stimulus, being picked up and handled roughly, etc.

d) It poops and pees a lot (as a healthy rabbit should), and will not always have the tidiest litter habits if not trained properly.

These bunnies, brought home on a whim by people expecting a sedate, cute bundle of fur or a toy for their children, face a dreadful fate each year after the Easter novelty has worn off: if lucky, they are abandoned at shelters in droves, and if unlucky, they are simply released into the wild to a terror-filled existence.

People, if you find yourself gazing adoringly at that cute little bunny in the pet shop window, please be smart and get informed before you consider actually adding a rabbit to your family:

Rabbits are wonderful, loving animals, but they are not as easy and low-maintenance as owning a cat. They are not stuffed animals, and I recommend you educate yourself before bringing one home to you, your children, or your other pets.

If you do decide you want a rabbit, I highly recommend you get a bunny who needs a home, from a shelter.

I will always be glad I made the decision to get a rabbit in 2000; Alfalfa was my little sweetheart, in spite of the fact that she chewed and pooped on my world;) She left a hole in my heart when she passed away last year, and I went to Red Door a few months later and found Viola. I cannot live without rabbits in my life now: they are Advanced Pet-Ownership, but they are worth it!

Viola, in one of her more sedate moments

Isn't this mine? Alfalfa, near the end of her life, still chewing on everything;)


Anonymous said...

You are so right on with this. My Aunt had a farm in Kenosha where she raised rabbits and without fail she always had someone buy a rabbit and return them after Easter when they realized they were living, breathing creatures. Once a couple let there 2 year old hold the rabbit and he dropped him down the stairs and broke his back. Instead of bringing him to a vet they brought him back to my aunt for a refund as if he were a defective toy! PLEASE don't buy living things unless you are going to commit for their lifetime not for the length of your interest.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Ginger said...

People can be remarkably heartless towards animals. Thank goodness there are wonderful people out there to get the word out!