Easter pets require care

Published 1:47 pm Tuesday, April 11, 2017

With Easter around the corner, you might have the impulse to gift your children with a pet bunny, or maybe some cute fuzzy chicks or ducklings. But, before you settle on a live animal as an Easter gift, stop to consider what you are getting yourself into.

Ducklings and chicks grow into ducks and chickens that aren’t nearly so cuddly as their smaller selves, and they’ll require special outdoor accommodations. Given what they need, though, they’ll be fairly happy to be left alone to their own devices.

Rabbits aren’t quite so easy.

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Rabbits are high maintenance pets. According to the House Rabbit Society (rabbit.org), rabbits are only slightly less expensive than dogs to keep as a pet, and much more expensive than cats or guinea pigs. They are also not good starter pets for children, and require an adult caregiver to make sure their needs are met and regular veterinary visits to thrive. If properly cared for, rabbits can live from eight to 14 years, on average, meaning they are just as much a commitment as your pet dog or cat when it comes to time.

If, after considering all this, you are committed to sharing your life with a rabbit, consider a rescue rabbit from an animal shelter or a dedicated rabbit rescue. Rabbits are the third most frequently surrendered, and third most euthanized, pets found in animal shelters.

Rabbits make wonderful, loving pets if you are committed to investing the time they deserve into their care. But before you give any living thing as a pet, be it bunny, duckling, or chick, make sure you are prepared for that commitment.