Rabbits are pets, not toys, experts say ahead of Easter

SAUCIER, Miss. (WLOX) – Easter is just days away, and while some parents may be inclined to surprise their children with a new pet bunny on Sunday morning, many experts have advised against it. Among these experts are James and Sherry Johnson.

The Johnsons own and operate Johnson’s Bunny Haven in Saucier. Here, they collect rabbits abandoned by owners. Owners usually decide this after realizing that the work and expense of owning a pet rabbit just isn’t worth it, and according to James Johnson, this is especially true around Easter.

“It’s an 8 to 10 year commitment,” he says. “Most rabbits bought for Easter, 4 out of 5 will die or be thrown away the first year.”

“People leave them in the woods or near the woods because they think ‘it’s a rabbit, they’ll be able to survive,'” explains Sherry Johnson. “But they won’t survive. They are domesticated rabbits, totally different from normal rabbits.

The Johnsons work in partnership with the Humane Society to find homes for their rabbits. Aspiring owners are encouraged to learn more about rabbit.org before deciding whether or not adopting a pet rabbit is right for them.

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Raymond I. Langston