It’s that time of year again – the time of year where people seem to abandon their common sense and start to think that buying a living animal on a whim as a gift is somehow a good idea.
So let’s go over the list of reasons why you shouldn’t buy a bunny rabbit for Easter – and if you already knew all of this, perhaps share it with someone you know who doesn’t.
- Bunnies are not toys or decorations – they are living creatures that need frequent care and attention.
- Bunnies are not a good choice for “teaching children responsibility” – they require a lot of work and care that children probably can’t do on their own, no matter how responsible they are.
- Bunnies are expensive pets – proper food, hay, litter, and especially vet care can really add up.
- Bunnies are not short-term pets – the average life span of an indoor bunny is around 10 years.
- Bunnies need lots of space – the stereotypical image of a bunny in a cage is a terrible one; bunnies need lots of room to run around, just like a cat or a dog would need room and wouldn’t be happy in a cage. And it’s much better if that space is indoors – though it is possible to keep a bunny outside (depending on where you live), you’d have to build a very large enclosure and protect it against both predators in your area as well as the digging instinct of the bunny so they don’t escape.
- Bunnies can be destructive – bunnies are instinctive chewers, so they will inevitably chew things in your home (like cords, rugs, baseboards, etc.) unless you protect them.
- Bunnies need friends – unless you can spend a lot of time with your bunny, it will probably be happier if you get it another bunny as a friend… so now you have two bunnies, with twice the care & cost.
One final thing to note is that it’s not easy to change your mind if you get a bunny and then decide it isn’t for you – it’s not like a dog or a cat where it is (relatively) easy to give to a shelter and have someone else adopt it. So many people get bunnies and then abandon them (especially around Easter) that shelters and rescue organizations have a hard time dealing with it – and after Easter the demand goes down, so it’s hard to find homes for bunnies that are given away. And of course it goes without saying that a domestic bunny rabbit can’t just be released into the wild – they are domestic pets, not wild animals, and can’t survive on their own.
So, in short, even if you are willing to put up with all the cost and work and time associated with caring for a bunny… please don’t buy one for Easter. This only encourages people to breed and try to sell them around this time of year, and when they can’t be sold (or when people buy them and then get tired of them) it just pushes the problem onto shelters and rescue organizations that are already overtaxed. So please, just don’t… or if you must, please consider adopting from a shelter or rescue instead.