With their soft, silky fur, big ears and adorable little noses, it’s no wonder people would consider adopting a rabbit. The topic of house rabbit adoption comes up to us at the Dumb Friends League every year as Easter approaches—people often think an Easter bunny of their own would make the perfect gift.
And we are here to tell you that’s not a great idea! Let’s talk about the realities of caring for rabbits and why they don’t make good gifts, anytime of year.
Don’t get us wrong, bunnies are great, but adding a rabbit to your family—or any animal for that matter—shouldn’t be done without careful consideration about what is best for you and your new pet.
Let’s start with a little “Bunny 101”:
- Adding a bunny to your family is a long-term commitment. A domestic rabbit can live to be about 12 to 15 years old!
- Even though they are soft and appear cuddly, they generally are not fond of being held—which can be quite frustrating, especially for young children.
- Rabbits need exercise and shouldn’t be caged all the time.
- They can be litter box trained, but training takes time and patience.
Rabbits do make wonderful, loving pets, but they are not “easy care” pets. They have specific needs to live a happy and healthy life. We have great resources for anyone who thinks a bunny is the right pet for their household at our shelters and on our website.
Next, let’s talk about giving pets as gifts. It’s not a good idea and here are a few reasons why:
- It’s a personal decision. The right pet for you and the right pet for me may not be the same thing.
- Pets have their own unique preferences too. Some prefer a quiet home without children, while others thrive with active families.
- A surprise pet may not be the best idea if the recipient—whether it’s an older parent, significant other or child—is not ready or willing to take on the commitment of owning and caring for a pet throughout its lifetime. And you should not expect your child to take full responsibility for caring for that pet.
- Half the fun of adopting is coming to the shelter, together, and selecting the perfect pet. Walking through the kennels and meeting different animals is a vital part of the experience and will create memories that can be shared for a lifetime.
If it is the right time to add a pet to your family—cute little bunny or otherwise—please consider the adoption option. We always have great pets waiting to meet their new families at the Dumb Friends League!
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