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Advice from the Easter bunny – don’t give in to impulse
6 March 2018
It’s that time of year again when the shops are awash with chocolate eggs and images of fluffy bunnies. No-one can deny that rabbits are unbelievably cute, and if the abundance of Easter images is making you want to become a bunny-parent, we want to offer some advice. Think Twice.
It’s the advice we give all our customers considering taking on a pet. Here at Pets Corner, animal welfare is our most important concern. Before they become your pets, they’re ours, so we want to ensure that everyone who takes our animals home is fully prepared for the commitment.
We’ve all experienced the emotional pull of seeing two little bright eyes and that twitchy nose.
However, buying a rabbit on impulse can cause problems. Rescue centres are filled with bunnies abandoned by owners who weren’t sufficiently prepared or didn’t understand what’s involved.
That’s why we stop selling rabbits around Easter time – because an impulse decision is never the right way to go about buying a pet.
There are a few common myths around keeping bunnies which perpetuate their suffering, for example that they make good pets for very young children and that they’re happy living alone in a hutch. Sadly, these myths lead to lots of rabbits living unhappy lives in back gardens up and down the country.
Here, our Head of Training at Pets Corner Lucy Ross offers some key advice on how to provide a happy bunny home:
1. Friends for life
Rabbits have a life expectancy of up to 12 years which means they’re a long-term commitment both in terms of time and money. Over a lifetime, rabbits will need a great deal of veterinary care; they should be neutered to prevent problems and need to be vaccinated annually.
2. Better together
Rabbits are social animals that thrive in company and in the wild they live in large groups called colonies. So, they can get very depressed if living a solitary life; for this reason we sell our rabbits in pairs to ensure a happier life with companionship. If you don’t have a bonded pair, introducing your rabbit to another can be a long and difficult process which needs supervision, but it is well worth the effort.
3. Think beyond the hutch
If your rabbits are living outdoors, they need space beyond the hutch to run, play and mimic ‘wild’ behaviour. A hutch is not enough. When housing bunnies outside you need to provide as much space as possible, that is protected from predators and is sufficiently weather-proofed against extreme heat and cold. House bunnies will benefit from greater daily attention, but they still need space to exercise which means you’ll have to bunny-proof your house.
Lucy continues: “Bunnies do make wonderful pets, and their personalities mean they’re great company. However, they are just as much of a commitment as cats and dogs, which many people aren’t aware of. We want to ensure that our rabbits go to the right homes. As Easter approaches we urge anyone considering buying a bunny as an Easter gift to think carefully and find out as much as you can. We’re here to offer advice so you can enjoy your pet for the rest of their life.”
If you’d like to speak to our friendly and experienced staff about looking after bunnies, find your nearest store online.