13 Apr

A Chocolate Easter Bunny is Best

LA Animal Services offers tips for bringing home a rabbit

A Chocolate Easter Bunny is Best

A Chocolate Easter Bunny is Best

Los Angeles, April 13, 2017 – As the Easter holiday approaches, LA Animal Services reminds the community that real rabbits, chicks and ducklings don’t always make the best gifts. Often these animals are sold illegally on the streets or in pet stores as tiny babies that are not strong enough to be adopted or are ill and many die soon after purchase leaving everyone heartbroken.

Sticking with a stuffed toy bunny or chocolate candy rabbit in the Easter basket is the safer and more enjoyable option for your loved one. You can also take this opportunity to educate young children about rabbits and pet responsibility.

When your family is ready to add a new family member, rabbits are affectionate and personable and they make wonderful companions for the person who will supply daily care and attention. A well cared for rabbit can live 12 to 15 years.

Los Angeles Animal Services has great rabbits at all six City animal shelters ready for adoption. They are spayed or neutered, microchipped and ready for a home of their own.

Here are some tips and guidelines for adding a rabbit to your home:

  • Rabbits are crepuscular which means they are most active in the mornings and evenings. This is ideal for many work schedules since they sleep for most of the day and through the night.
  • Rabbits are social creatures that do best in pairs. They’re curious, playful, can learn tricks and they enjoy having toys. If you’re considering keeping multiple bunnies, it’s best to pair a spayed female with a neutered male, or adopt an already bonded pair.
  • If your rabbit is not spayed or neutered, it’s important to do so to prevent unwanted births. Spaying/neutering also can help decrease the chance of certain types of cancer, improve litter box habits, minimize excessive chewing and decrease territorial aggression.
  • There are many vegetables that rabbits can have, and you may find yourself eating healthier as you shop for your rabbit’s food.  A rabbit should never be left without food because of their complex digestive system. A healthy diet of Timothy hay and plenty of fresh vegetables, along with the vitamins provided in a small amount of daily pellets will help your bunny to live a long, healthy and happy life.
  • Because your rabbit’s teeth grow continuously, it’s essential that you provide them with hard things to gnaw on to prevent their teeth from becoming too long. Certain types of wood, untreated wicker, apple twigs, toilet or paper towel rolls and cardboard boxes are some suggested items. You can find some great toys for rabbits that help promote chewing at your local pet store.
  • Rabbits should be kept inside your home. Within your household, they will need a place of their own for security and quiet time even if they have free roam of the house. Cages are great to use to for those times when it is safer for them to be in an enclosure. Your rabbit’s enclosure should be large enough for them to hop around, a place for a litter box, a cardboard box to hide in, a hay box, a place to hang their water bottle and a place to stretch out.
  • Rabbits are very clean animals and like their environments to be clean too. You should clean your rabbit’s cage every couple days – two to three times a week.
  • Rabbits tend to use just one corner of their cage as their bathroom, so you’ll want to put a litter box in a corner in order to facilitate litter box training. You may want to put a litter box outside your rabbit’s cage, as well, for it to use when it has free run of the house.

Los Angeles City Animal Shelters have a supply of spayed and neutered bunnies all year long so you can take your time making sure a rabbit is the right pet for your family. To view available adoptable rabbits, visit LAAnimalServices.com/adopt.

For more information, contact Sara Ebrahimi, (213) 482-9551 or sara.ebrahimi@lacity.org