Monday, February 25, 2008

No holiday for the bunnies

In a few mere weeks it will be Easter. While it may be a wonderful Holiday for most of us...it is no holiday if you are a bunny. Pets are never something that should be purchased on impulse. They are long term commitments and can be quite a handful for a responsible adult let alone a child.

Unlike so many other pets, rabbits are prey animals. This means that they generally lead a very hard life in the wild and must always be on the lookout for danger. This same behavior that helps to keep them alive can cause them to be rather jumpy and nervous around children. In order for a rabbit to be a good pet for a child, that child has to learn how to approach and deal with an animal that is prepared to flee in the face of danger.

Unfortunately all too many pets are purchased as impulse gifts for the Holidays. Reports are that as many as 75% of all rabbits purchased for Easter are 'discarded' within just a few months. It is incomprehensible that someone with such a short attention span could ever possibly be prepared to take on a ten to fifteen year commitment of a pet rabbit. Often these 'discarded' pets are turned loose as consumers have seen rabbits in the wild after all.

First, you should notice that 'wild' rabbits generally have coloring that allows them to blend into their surroundings at least affording them the most basic chance of hiding. Your typical 'pet' rabbit has been bred to have vibrant and distinct coloring that while it is attractive to the eye is also all too easily spotted in the wild. Second, your pet rabbit has been handled and is learning to trust people. You have been teaching it NOT to be afraid of its surroundings, then you have taken it to the most dangerous place in a rabbit's world - the great wide open. You might as well have signed its death warrant, for it doesn't stand a chance exposed to the elements and dangers. You wouldn't either if you were dropped off in a remote wilderness and expected to survive on your own.

You know what is good...a yummy chocolate Easter bunny! They have a life span of only a few days, so your kids won't lose interest and you not only don't have the expense of a pet rabbit to deal with, you won't have the death of a lovely animal on your conscience. So, given the choice...celebrate bunnies, don't doom them.

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