Harvey's House is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization

Rabbits and Easter just don’t mix.

You wouldn’t buy your child a horse to celebrate the Kentucky Derby so why buy a rabbit to celebrate Easter?

As spring and Easter approach, we are surrounded by beautiful images of adorable bunnies with their baskets full of eggs, seeming to portray the innocence and happiness of the season. But the reality is a harsh contrast; Easter is the saddest time for rabbits. Every year, after the initial excitement wears off, rescues and shelters are inundated with discarded, impulse-purchased “Easter bunnies.” In the rescue world, this is known as the “Easter Dump Season,” and it’s heartbreaking.

Rabbits are a 10-year commitment that require a large amount of financial, physical, emotional, and behavioral care. They are not “low maintenance” or starter pets. Do your research before you bring a bunny into your home (by the way, that’s why we’re here!). Did you know that rabbits can require more work and financial support than a cat or dog? It’s possible. For example, rabbits require special vets that specialize in rabbits or “exotics,” which are harder to find and often more costly.

Rabbits are not ideal pets for young children; they can easily become bored when the bunny does not meet their expectations. Rabbits are not the cuddly animals you want them to be, and most do not enjoy being picked up and held. They are happier when you pet them at their level and on their own terms. They are prey animals, which means they can be timid and skittish in some situations. Rabbits also have fragile skeletal systems and can be injured easily if handled improperly.

Meet Mahjong - available for adoption!

Meet Mahjong – available for adoption!

This Easter, if your child wants a bunny, take it from Harvey and make it a chocolate or stuffed friend who’s ideal for hugging. If your child wants to interact with a live bunny, you can always volunteer at a local shelter. This provides interaction with rabbits but also helps your child gain an appreciation for what it takes to properly care for a bunny.

If, after doing your research, you are ready for the commitment of sharing your life with a rabbit, please ADOPT Don’t SHOP!

Every year thousands of rabbits are surrendered to shelters and rescue organizations, or, worse yet, set loose in the wild, subjecting them to certain death.

If you want to help these wonderful creatures live full and happy lives, please choose chocolate this year for Easter. And for more information on how you can spread the word about rabbits and Easter, visit the House Rabbit Society Easter resources site.

Also, visit the Make Mine Chocolate Campaign to see how you can help spread the word that rabbits are not Easter toys. www.makeminechocolate.org.