Although they are cute and cuddly, some residents are letting the public know that rabbits are more than just an Easter gift for a child.
Unlike common pets like cats and dogs, rabbits come with a lot more than someone may bargain for.
Local mom, Sarah Norem has two rabbits, Sir William and Judith. She also has a 5 year-old that she says she will not leave alone with the pet rabbits.
“Not at all. Like I let her do chores like feed the bunnies but I have to make the food and stuff.”
Norem says there’s a lot more that goes into having a pet rabbit. She says they’re high maintenance because of the cleaning that is involved, as well as making sure rabbits have enough exercise, proper food and items to chew that.
Norem says rabbits are not good starter pets for small children, “kids are really rough. Like, they [rabbits] can die of fright, pretty much. You can’t be tough with them, they’re very fragile.”
One local veterinarian from Tejas Veterinary Clinic, Rob Perkins, DVM says rabbits come with a long-time commitment. “Rabbits live to be about 11 years-old, and they need special care. A lot of times, when they get older they get aggressive and need to be surgically neutered.”
Dr. Perkins believes it is inhumane to get an animal and not know what it takes to care for it, “we’re just really against impulse decisions.”
Before a parent heads to the store or breeder to get a last minute Easter gift, they must understand there can be consequences.
Director at Corpus Christi Animal Care Services, Mike Gillis says, “it’s prohibited for anybody to give away, or sell, a baby chick, a gosling, or a rabbit, 30 days prior to and including Easter.”
He says, if there is proof that someone is selling or buying rabbits, there could be a violation.
Fines can be as low as $50, and a maximum of $2,000” days Gillis.
Both Norem and Gillis believe if someone wants a rabbit, to do the proper research. Norem says to look for an adopter since many rabbits get left behind, since people may not realize the care that is needed.