House Rabbit Society strongly urges parents not to buy their children live “Easter bunnies” unless they are willing to make a 10-year commitment to properly care for the animals. Each year, thousands of baby rabbits, chicks, and ducks are purchased as Easter gifts only to be abandoned or left at shelters in the days, weeks and months that follow Easter . . .
“Rabbits are not ‘low maintenance’ pets,” says (HRS President Margo) DeMello; they require at least the same amount of work as a cat or dog, and often more.”
Julia and I adopted two rabbits the year we got married. We brought Jellybean home in August of 2004 and then added Oreo the following December. Once they were both fixed we put them together and after a short sparring match bonded and have been friends ever since.
Jellybean just turned nine and Oreo is eight and a half. They’re elderly bunnies now. They don’t run and hop and play like they used to, but they’re happy, well fed, and well cared for.
We took the responsibility for them, treating them as beloved family pets not as toys. We give them a balanced diet of mostly hay with some pellets and fresh vegetables, and the occasional nibble of banana for a treat. We keep a clean litter box, brush them regularly, and give them the run of a bunny-proofed living room.
If you’re not willing to take on the responsibility of a pet rabbit, don’t get one. If a child wants a friend to cuddle with, a stuffed toy will do nicely. You can even get a FurReal Friends pet that acts like a real animal. Anna has a dog and a chipmunk, and she enjoys playing with both.
Easter is one day. A rabbit is ten years.