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Rescue Suspends Bunny Adoptions In Light Of Easter

Monday March 21st, 2016, 11:00am

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With the rabbit being the mascot of Easter, many parents will purchase their child a baby bunny for the spring holiday – but before you hippity, hoppity down to the pet store, a local rescue is asking possible pet owners to do their homework and think long and hard if a pet rabbit is an ideal choice for their family.

“At Easter time a lot of people go in and get a baby bunny, but they’re not really the perfect pet for children,” said Jen Hilbers, founder of Tiny Paws Small Animal Rescue. “They need to see an exotic vet, they require a specialized diet. They often don’t like to be picked up and cuddled so they will scratch and bite which is not the perfect thing for a child because they want to carry a pet around. And they poop, a lot, 300 times a day.”

Unfortunately after Easter is when her rescue and shelters will become overrun with rabbits, which is why Tiny Paws has suspended all bunny adoptions until April to ensure their rabbits aren’t going to homes just for Easter. Hilbers’ goal is to make sure parents of the rescued rabbits are well educated when adopting their fur-babies and understand the commitment.

They may be small animals, but they are a 10-year commitment and need a lot of space to hop around. Hilbers said ideally they should be kept in an x-pen while owners are at work, but they can also be trained as a free-roam pet, as they are easily litter trained. Just remember to bunny proof because they will chew.

“They require a lot of care,” said Hilbers. “They should be loved just like a cat or a dog, they’re not meant to live outside. They need to live indoors in a proper enclosure like an x-pen or allowed to be running free roam, and we don’t recommend hutches.”

High-quality timothy hay is 80 per cent of an adult rabbit’s diet, according to Hilbers, and they also need approximately a quarter cup of timothy pellets and one to two cups of fresh veggies daily, although she said carrots are high in sugar and should be a less frequent treat as rabbit’s digestive systems are sensitive.

Since 2014, Hilbers has been taking in surrendered and stray guinea pigs and rabbits, although she only has limited space available. She said she previously worked at an animal shelter and noticed the amount of surrendered small animals and wanted to do something to help. Tiny Paws Small Animal Rescue is a no-kill rescue for rabbits and guinea pigs, run by public donations, providing their animals with medical care and foster homes, ensuring their rescues receive the attention and love they need before they find their forever homes.

The animals may only be a part of their owners’ lives for a short time, but for the animal that is their entire life.

For more information on Tiny Paws and to see their adoptable animals visit their website or Facebook page.

 

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