Families should never be given a bunny as an Easter gift because there are many things to consider and prepare for before bringing one into your house.
Rabbits are incredible animals and make good pets, but many families are unprepared for the obligations of pet ownership (especially if it’s a surprise gift), and the excitement of a new rabbit may wear off quickly.
Children/Kids may not realize how sensitive and fragile bunnies are and how easily they may be damaged.
Rabbits’ bones may break, and their limbs can get dislocated if dropped, handled too roughly, or yanked around.
The lifespan of a rabbit is 8 to 12 years, and if a family loses interest, the bunny may be ignored and neglected for years.
Rabbits are sensitive animals that should not be kept as pets by little children who may not yet be responsible enough to care for per rabbits.
A child’s enthusiasm and handling may cause stress or even injury to rabbits.
Why You Shouldn’t Buy a Rabbit for an Easter Gift
When Easter approaches, many people consider getting a pet rabbit, either on the spur of the moment or as a present for little children.
While rabbits make excellent indoor pets (and can be litter-trained like cats), individuals should educate themselves on the realities of bunny ownership.
Unfortunately, as the obligation of their care kicks in and the thrill of Easter weekend wears off, it’s too typical for individuals to dispose of bunnies.
Many rabbits will be surrendered to animal shelters, kept in outdoor cabinets, or abandoned.
Bunnies released into the wild frequently die of malnutrition, exposure to the weather, or predation.
Rabbits are the third most often relinquished and euthanized animals at animal shelters.
According to ASPCA research, rabbits are more costly to keep than cats or guinea pigs and are second only to dogs in terms of cost.
Don’t purchase or adopt a rabbit on the spur of the moment this Easter.
Why Rabbits are not Ideal Easter Gifts
Rabbits are charming, pint-sized, and fluffy, but caring for them as pets takes a lot of work. Dr. Susan Horton, DVM, CEO of Chicago Exotics Animal Hospital, adds, “Rabbits make lovely companions, but they need as much care as cats or dogs.”
According to Dr. Horton, rabbits have extensive demands in terms of their habitat, diet, and general care.
She advises anybody considering bringing a rabbit into their home to do a comprehensive study beforehand.
Giving a bunny for Easter is unfortunately quite common, and most of these bunnies end up homeless or worse.
Here Are Some Things to Think About Before Gifting a Bunny For Easter
Rabbits dislike being held.
According to Dr. Horton, rabbits are terrestrial creatures, meaning they like to be on the ground.
“Being hoisted out of their comfort zone is really stressful for them,” she adds, “and being carried in an insecure way might make your rabbit panic.” Their legs and backs are easily broken.”
In reality, the best-case situation is for rabbits to be handled exclusively by trained people who can keep them from harming themselves if they attempt to return to the ground.
Try sitting on the ground to create trust with your rabbit on his level if you want to hold him at home.
When handling the rabbit, always support the rear end and consult a veterinarian about the proper method to hold and manage the rabbit before adopting.
Rabbits have a habit of chewing.
Rabbit-proofing their dwelling spaces should also be considered due to their extreme chewing behavior.
Electric cables, for example, are very harmful and should be kept away from their teeth.
Your Rabbit May Require a Friend and Mental Stimulation
Rabbits are highly social animals and perform best in male/female pairings, but not all rabbits connect successfully.
Working with a rabbit shelter specializing in pair-bonding and special training may help you locate the appropriate partner for your rabbit.
But if the person you’re gifting doesn’t want another rabbit, then your rabbit may feel lonely.
Rabbits are highly social creatures and live in groups.
As you hopefully realize, rabbits require lots of stimulation and do well with toys and other things they can play with.
Rabbits Have Special Grooming Requirements
Rabbits, particularly long-haired ones, need brushing since their fur may readily mat.
However, you should never bathe your rabbit.
The rabbit may have cardiac collapse because of this stress.
However, cleaning your rabbit’s ears is essential, mainly if he is lop-eared.
To clean a rabbit’s ears, use a rabbit-safe cleaning solution your veterinarian suggests.
This solution should always be kept at room temperature or slightly warmer.
Fill the ear with enough liquid to fill the canal, then gently massage the ear to dislodge debris.
You must consult a veterinarian if you need a more thorough cleaning.
Rabbits, like dogs and cats, need veterinary care.
While pet rabbits definitely need veterinary treatment at least once a year, most veterinarians do not see them.
To treat your pet rabbit, you’ll need to locate an unusual or small animal veterinarian that specialises in adult rabbit and young rabbits care.
Veterinarians who examine rabbits undergo thorough training and mentoring to properly care for this species.
Not every veterinarian is trained to work with rabbits, so do your homework ahead of time to locate someone who is.
It’s also essential to get your rabbit spayed or neutered, just as you would with a dog.
If female rabbits are not spayed, they have a very high incidence of uterine cancer.
Enables Bunny Mills
As long as the practice of giving baby rabbits carries on, so will unethical bunny mills, unfortunately.
These places sole goal is to turn their adult rabbits into a baby rabbit producing factory – en masse.
Mills often do not care for their live animals, in this case, their live rabbits.
How can they be properly cared for when they are simply targeting quality over quantity? Pet stores may seem like a better alternative but some of them are mills in disguise.
If you want pet rabbits or other pets, there are usually plenty of rescue options in plenty of locations.
They may have another pet already which are predators of the rabbit. A cat may not get along with a rabbit, for example.
So, if the plan was to keep it as a house rabbit (which will also need to be rabbit proofed – wires and electrical cords hidden, etc), then this may be a problem with the other animal.
If they don’t want to buy or build a secure rabbits shed in the garden, then this could be a problem.
A rabbit’s diet consists of a fresh supply of:
- fresh vegetables
- fresh water
Among other things. These need to be replenished regularly, so the bunny doesn’t go hungry or thirsty.
Rabbits are expensive to look after! In fact, after dogs, the ASPCA says they’re the 2nd most expensive animal to care for.
Even more than cats! By buying someone a rabbit, you could be putting a huge financial burden on them.
It’s never a smart idea to acquire a bunny as an Easter Gift since there’s so much to remember when it comes to caring for them as pets.
The fact is that no pet should be given as a present to someone who isn’t prepared.
Part of owning a pet is respecting the animal you’ve chosen to live with.
You must be prepared to be responsible for that pet’s care and well-being for the rest of their lives.
Alternative Easter Gifts to Bunnies
Instead of giving a Bunny for Easter, why not give something else?
Here are some great gift ideas for Easter:
1. Webkinz Rabbit– Give a virtual rabbit instead of a real one. Your child may enjoy all the benefits of playing with it and caring for it without worrying about the long term commitment.
Alternatively, pocket pets (like the Tamagochi keyring) are also a good idea as a gift for a child.
2. Chocolate Easter Bunny – Who doesn’t enjoy a lovely Easter basket full of chocolate? Chocolate rabbits are the perfect gift.
Make Mine Chocolate launches its yearly campaign each year to raise awareness about the care rabbits need and oppose giving them as Easter presents in favor of more acceptable Easter gifts such as chocolate bunnies.
3. Bunny Slippers – Hippity hopping along the bunny path might be exhausting.
A pair of cuddly bunny slippers instead do the opposite for the person you want to gift and are the ideal way to help them unwind.
4. Bunny ZooPurr Animal HatTM – Who needs an Easter bonnet when you can wear a soft fuzzy bunny hat to display your Easter spirit?
5. Lego 40086 Easter Bunny – Every Easter basket requires some entertainment, and what could be more entertaining than an Easter Lego kit?
6. Stuffed bunny – stuffed Easter bunnies give you all of the cuddlyness of a live rabbit but with none of the responsibility and care that a live bunny needs. A low maintenance option.
Let’s break the cycle. Consider one of our Easter gift ideas instead of a bunny for Easter.
Summary – Don’t Buy a Bunny for Easter
While they’re very cute, a rabbit should never be given to a child as an Easter present.
Rabbits are delicate creatures that should not be kept as pets by children.
If a rabbit is dropped, handled too forcefully, or jerked around, its bones might shatter, and its limbs can become dislocated.
It’s extremely common to give a rabbit as a gift for Easter, and most of these bunnies end up homeless, at an animal shelter, animal sanctuary or worse.
Rabbits have a lot of needs in terms of their environment, nutrition, and overall care.
Why not try any of the options we discussed above instead of giving a pet rabbit for Easter?
While celebrating Easter Sunday, let us help rescue our bunny friends, and other animals.
Easter pets, whether a rabbit or something else, are always a bad idea.
You can also donate to the House Rabbit Society so they can continue to spread awareness about caring for these beautiful creatures.