Contrary to Eastertime hype, rabbits and small children are not a good match. The natural exuberance and rambunctiousness of even the gentlest toddler are stressful for the sensitive rabbit.
    Children like a companion they can hold, carry, and cuddle. That's why stuffed animals are so popular. Rabbits are not passive and cuddly. They are ground-loving creatures who feel frightened and insecure when held and restrained. The result: the child loses interest, and the rabbit ends up neglected or abandoned.
    Rabbits are not "low-maintenance" pets. They have a lifespan of 10 years and require as much work as a dog or cat. Your home must be bunny-proofed, or Thumper will chew electrical cords and furniture. Rabbits must be spayed or neutered or they will mark your house with feces and urine. They should live indoors, as members of the family. To consign these sensitive, intelligent, social animals to life in a hutch is to miss the joy of sharing your life with a rabbit.     So if little Pat is pleading for a bunny for Easter, do a rabbit a favor, and buy her a toy rabbit that she can snuggle to her heart's content. Let's make Easter a joyful time for our long-eared friends.

Clearly, rabbits aren't for everyone. Are you a gentle adult living in a quiet household? If you think you're one of those rare individuals who would enjoy sharing life with a rabbit, please visit your local rabbit-rescue group.

An all-volunter nonprofit organization
148 Broadway Richmond, CA 94804