“I’m adorable and cute, but you must take care of me forever,” says Mr. Bunny. — Image Credit: Pixabay.

“I’m adorable and cute, but you must take care of me forever,” says Mr. Bunny. — Image Credit: Pixabay.

Pick chocolate not fuzz

The BC SPCA is asking families to give chocolate bunnies instead of real rabbits as pets for Easter.

Bunnies are cute and fluffy but are also a lifetime commitment as a pet.

As Easter approaches and the prospect of adorable baby animals pop up on social media and in backyards, the BC SPCA is reminding families that getting a pet around the holiday season isn’t a great idea.

Instead Lorie Chortyk, BC SPCA general manager, community relations says it is better to give chocolate bunnies as gifts, rather than real rabbits.

Each year, BC SPCA shelters across the province receive dozens of abandoned rabbits after the Easter holiday has passed and the excitement of a new pet has worn off, and the reality of pet care sets in.

“The animals turned in to SPCA shelters are the fortunate ones,” says Chortyk. “Many others are simply abandoned in the wild to fend for themselves, and these domesticated rabbits often fall prey to predators such as coyotes, are susceptible to disease, or end up starving to death.”

If there are no predators, rabbits can often do well outdoors but can balance of nature by multiplying into a serious overpopulation problem.

“Rabbits can live more than 12 years,” notes Chortyk notes. “People who are prepared and willing to make a commitment to a pet rabbit or rabbit should learn about what caring for this unique animal entails.”

The BC SPCA shelter staff have experienced animal care attendants who can help families understand what is involved with taking care of a rabbit before they adopt a bunny as a pet.

Find out more about what rabbits require at spca.bc.ca/rabbitcare.