As Easter draws near, it is important to spread the word that live rabbits should not be given as Easter gifts. While rabbits make excellent companions for some families, they have a unique set of needs that not everyone can meet.
Here are a few:
You will need to bunny-proof your home or else your rabbit will wreak havok.
Rabbits need plenty of space to exercise. They are social, curious, and intelligent animals. But they also have an incessant urge to chew. Everything from wooden chair legs to electrical wires to remote control buttons to mouldings are fair game to rabbits. Rabbit owners will need to take the time to properly protect and stow away personal belongings.
Rabbits need access to fresh hay at all times.
If you have grass allergies, a rabbit probably isn’t for you. Hay provides the primary sustenance for a rabbits to maintain digestive and dental health. You can’t just give them pellets.
Rabbits generally don’t like being held.
Although rabbits can be affectionate, they’re not as “huggable” as people imagine. Children and adults alike may be disappointed when Bunnikins won’t sit contentedly in their arms or laps. Most rabbits prefer to stay on the floor and have you sit on the floor with them (quietly).
For more information, read our article, Easter and Rabbits.
Don’t let this happen to you and your bunnies! This infographic by DugDug highlights the importance of spaying/neutering your pet rabbits:
Here’s a great web chat video hosted by HuffPost Live about the sad fate of rabbits, chicks, and ducklings who are bought as Easter presents. Guests include representatives from the House Rabbit Society and other animal rescue organizations.
Win this personalized bunny print by entering our giveaway contest!
Just in time for Easter, My House Rabbit and Grizzly Bear Greetings are hosting a giveaway for a personalized bunny print! Customize this design with your child’s or pet bunny’s name and select one of four bunny colors: brown, white, grey or black. (See color choices here.)
This vibrant design is printed on heavyweight 100% cotton rag, acid-free paper with a matte finish. Print measures 8 x 10 inches and is centered on an 8.5 x 11 inch sheet. Giveaway is for print only. Frame and mat not included. Colors may vary a bit from your screen vs. the actual print colors.
Learn more about this print >
- To enter, like Grizzly Bear Greetings’s Facebook page and My House Rabbit’s Facebook page, and then comment below with the name you’d like on the print and your color choice (brown, white, grey or black).
- One entry per person. Winner will be randomly selected.
- Be sure to include your email address so we can contact you for your mailing address if you win. (We will not use your email address for any other purpose.)
- Print will be mailed via USPS First Class Mail within two business days of receipt of mailing address. We make no guarantee that the print will arrive before Easter.
- Contest is open worldwide and ends Sunday, March 10 at 11:59 pm EST.
UPDATE: Congratulations to our winner, Becky S. and her bunny, Babs.
Many of us in the bunny community already know that year after year, shelters and rescues get inundated with unwanted pet rabbits a few weeks after Easter.
So let’s try to spread the word that pet rabbits should not be Easter impulse buys! It comes down to this: if you haven’t done any research or put any thought into whether or not a real rabbit is a good fit for you and your family, go the chocolate bunny route instead.
Here are a few resources on the topic:
If you love Peeps marshmallow bunnies, you can base a whole craft theme around them this Easter. With these free felt sewing patterns and tutorials, you can create your own Peep-inspired bunny decor/gifts that will brighten up your holiday.
Marshmallow Bunny Plushies by Dandelions and Lace
Felt Peep Money / Gift Card Holders by Mommy Savers
Felt Peep Bunny Bunting by V and Co. / MADE
A sampling of the chocolates for sale at the Great Lakes Rabbit Sanctuary Easter Chocolate Fundraiser.
The Great Lakes Rabbit Sanctuary, located in Whittaker, Michigan, is having an Easter chocolate fundraiser.
These adorable and delicious chocolates not only raise money for the shelter, they also remind people that real bunnies are not appropriate Easter gifts. The chocolates are made by a local shop called Chocolate Drop Shop in Westland, Michigan.
For more information, see the Great Lakes Rabbit Sanctuary site or the fundraiser Facebook page.
NOTE: The deadline for orders is Friday, March 2nd.
Crystal & Christin, two adult female rabbits available for adoption from Alabama Ears.
Now that the excitement of Easter has started to subside, shelters and rabbit rescues will begin to be inundated with surrendered bunnies. Now is the time to show your support for rabbit welfare and rescue!
Here are a few options:
- Donate to the national House Rabbit Society (which funds national education efforts and Emergency Rescue Grants)
- Donate to local rabbit rescues, including House Rabbit Society chapters
- If you are an experienced house rabbit owner and have the space, sign up with a local rescue to foster bunnies in your home
- Volunteer with your local rescue
- Donate supplies (hay, litter, puppy-pens, etc.) to your local rescue
You may also want to put focus on Alabama-based shelters (e.g. Alabama EARS or Huntsville Friends of Rabbits), who may have to accommodate rabbits displaced from the tornadoes in addition to the annual post-Easter influx.
When Easter is around the corner, many people consider buying a pet rabbit, sometimes on a whim or as a gift for small children. While rabbits do make wonderful indoor companions (who can be litter-trained, just like cats), people should take the time to learn the reality of pet rabbit ownership.
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