Easter is coming, and many people have bunnies on the brain. But rabbits are not Easter toys! Every year, thousands of rabbits are abandoned or released outdoors because parents who bought them as gifts for their children are ill-prepared to care for them.
Vetstreet.com veterinarians, Dr. Patty Khuly and Dr. Marty Becker, say rabbits can make excellent family pets if you have the right expectations and knowledge to care for them.
- This is a commitment of ownership similar to a dog’s lifespan - rabbits on average live about seven to 10 years.
- Rabbits have distinct personalities and enjoy being very interactive with you and your family members.
- They shouldn't be cooped up in a cage all day and are active animals that need to be free to run, jump and play.
- They can be litterbox-trained and should live only indoors.
Vetstreet.com’s experts have the following top tips for rabbit ownership:
- Let the rabbit have time to learn about you and your household, your habits, the sights, the sounds, the smells and the vibrations of your house.
- They need and take more time to trust you enough to come to you.
- Getting down on the floor to their level at first will create a gentle trust.
- Don’t handle the rabbit the first few weeks until they have adjusted to you and your family.
Should you decide that you are fully-prepared to care for a rabbit and you wish to bring one into your home, never purchase a rabbit from a pet store. Instead, visit your local shelter or rescue organization and choose to adopt one of last year’s homeless “Easter gifts.”
For more information: visit www.vetstreet.com.