Rabbit rescue group advises: Do homework before adopting a bunny

That cute little bunny you bought on impulse for Easter? You might be having second thoughts.

A rabbit is a 10-year commitment. It is not a good pet for kids.

“We don’t like this time of year. We actually have a campaign. It’s called Make Mine Chocolate,” said Maria L. Perez, founder and president of the Las Vegas House Rabbit Society. “We encourage people to buy a chocolate rabbit for their child and not a live one, because they’re not a good pet for a child. Many of them are not spayed or neutered, so they have behavioral issues such as biting and aggression.”

Last year, in the two weeks following Easter, 13 rabbits entered The Animal Foundation. Of those, one was an owner surrender, one was a return, and the remainder were brought in as strays.

The House Rabbit Society is a nonprofit, all-volunteer rabbit rescue group. It does not accept surrendered rabbits but provides information to rabbit owners and foster volunteers. It has resources to help owners correctly care for their new bunny. Its website, lv-hrs.org, includes information on bunny care, proper diet and housing, and it also has volunteers who can answer questions for those who are facing behavioral problems with their rabbit.

“You can’t let them run loose in your house because they chew, and they’ll get electrocuted,” Perez said.

She said spaying or neutering not only minimizes the aggressive behavior but is necessary for the optimal health of the rabbit.

“They will develop cancers,” Perez said. “So, four months into having this bunny, that is now going to be an adolescent for two years, they start chewing and peeing and spraying and acting out. And so the owner will go price a spay or neuter and learn it’s $250 to $350 that they have to come up with.”

Area animal services see an increase in animals surrendered after the holiday.

“Easter and springtime are a great time to add a new family member, but parents should be prepared to do the majority of caretaking and socialization and support their kids in learning compassionate care for animals over that pet’s entire lifetime,” said KC Theisen, director of pet care issues for The Humane Society of the United States. “Many pet rabbits in shelters and rescues were likely Easter gifts once themselves, given up after the novelty inevitably wears off and the reality of long-term pet care sets in. Chickens and ducks also end up in shelters and sanctuaries weeks after Easter.”

There are other issues to consider. Rabbits cannot tolerate heat. They need the freedom to roam but at the same time have to be kept separate from dangers such as other pets. It’s a fallacy that small breeds of rabbits need less room to roam. They actually have more energy. Caging a bunny can lead to hip dysplasia and foot and back problems.

Rabbits who have been overbred can have problems with their vision and teeth. And, as cute as they look, they should not be picked up and cuddled.

“When you pick up a rabbit, it thinks it’s about to be eaten (by a predator),” Perez said. “They hate it.”

She said there are some fun parts to owning a rabbit. They are crepuscular and so will not keep you up all night. They’re also social — sometimes a little too social. Two rabbits can produce 350 offspring in one year. Their gestation is every 21 days.

Johna Mennone found her bunny, Binky, after the animal was abandoned as part of the “post-Easter dump” — when owners realize having a rabbit can be a handful. Binky lived about five years in her care. Mennone, a graphic artist, has the luxury of working from home. What was the thing that struck her most about having a rabbit?

“The amount of care they need,” Mennone said. “They like companionship. They thrive when you spend time with them.”

She said another thing that became clear was how fragile their health could be.

“To keep them healthy, you have to keep your eyes on them all the time to catch the warning signs, which can be very subtle,” she said. “Things happen quickly and progress rapidly, and there’s just a small window of time to catch it.”

Perez encourages people who decide to adopt a rabbit to go to The Animal Foundation, 655 N. Mojave Road, or the Nevada SPCA, 4800 W. Dewey Drive.

“Giving a rescue bunny a second chance is a good idea,” she said. “But first … call us, so we can talk about habitat and see if a bunny is the right fit for you.”

To contact the Las Vegas House Rabbit Society, email lvhrsorg@gmail.com.

To reach Summerlin Area View reporter Jan Hogan, email jhogan@viewnews.com or call 702-387-2949.

ad-high_impact_4
Local
Underground home was built as Cold War-era hideaway
The underground house at 3970 Spencer Street is one of the valley’s most unusual homes built 26 feet underground in 1978 by Girard “Jerry” B. Henderson, who, planned to survive the end of the world there.
Lip Smacking Foodie Tours takes you where the locals go
Donald Contursi talks about Lip Smacking Foodie Tours, which offers walking tours of restaurants on and off Las Vegas Boulevard with food samples and tidbits of history about the places they visit.
Bump stock manufacturers under fire
The Justice Department said last month that it had started the process to amend federal firearms regulations to clarify that federal law defines bump stocks as machine guns.
Art Bell’s Top 10 Shows
A selection of radio host Art Bell’s most popular shows.
Longtime Las Vegas attorney John Momot dies at age 74
Criminal defense attorney John Momot, who represented mob figures and even played himself in the movie “Casino,” has died.
David Copperfield in court after man injured during magic trick
The attorney for a British man who is suing illusionist David Copperfield said his client suffered serious injuries after being called on stage during Copperfield's show at MGM Grand.
5 things connecting Las Vegas and Marilyn Monroe
1. Marilyn Monroe, known then as Norma Jeane, obtained her first divorce in Las Vegas at the age of 20 on September 13, 1946. 2. According to some biographers, Monroe lived at 604 S. 3rd Street for four months during the summer of 1946. The house has since been torn down and is now the site of a parking lot. 3. In 1954, Monroe almost married Joe DiMaggio in Las Vegas but the wedding was called off last minute. The wedding was to be held at the Hotel El Rancho Vegas which was located on the southwest corner of Sahara Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard. 4. Las Vegas has at least one road dedicated to the star. Marilyn Monroe Avenue is located in east Las Vegas and intersects with Betty Davis Street and Cary Grant Court. 5. There are currently more than 20 Marilyn Monroe impersonators for hire in the Las Vegas Valley.
Sir Richard Branson announces purchase of Hard Rock Hotel
Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, has acquired the Hard Rock Hotel with partners and plans to turn it into a Virgin-branded property by the end of 2019.
3 Centennial High School students killed in Calif. crash (Full)
Three Centennial High School students were killed Thursday morning in Southern California when their vehicle was struck by a suspected drunken driver while they were enjoying their spring break, according to a family member of one of the victims.
Retail Restroom Sexual Assault Suspect
Las Vegas police are asking for help finding a man they said groped a woman in a south Las Vegas Valley restroom. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Calvary Christian Learning Academy, “There was no fair warning.”
Samantha O’Brien, whose three-year-old daughter attended the Calvary Christian Learning Academy daycare, found out Monday night when her daughter’s teacher called about the school closing.
Mojave Max at Springs Preserve
File footage of Mojave Max at Springs Preserve. (Springs Preserve)
Companies bet their futures on cryptocurrency
Two Las Vegas entrepreneurs talk about finding their niche in blockchain enabled technologies and digital currency.
Solar panels reduce energy bill for CCSD
Wilbur and Theresa Faiss Middle School is one of 42 CCSD schools with solar panel installations, saving approximately $514,000 per year in energy costs.
Red carpet at MGM for Dan Reynolds Believer screening
Kats on the red carpet for the VIP screening of "Believer," the documentary by Imagine Dragons frontman Dan Reynolds about how the Mormon Church treats its LGBTQ members.
Driver dies in single-vehicle crash
One person is dead after an early Wednesday morning crash in the northwest valley. The single-vehicle crash was called in about 1:35 a.m. on Jones Boulevard just north of Deer Springs Way, according to Metropolitan Police Department Sgt. Robert Stauffer. The driver, who was the only person inside the vehicle, died at the scene.
Uber Health to Improve Patient Ride-Hailing Services
Uber Health to Improve Patient Ride-Hailing Services On Thursday, Uber launched its Uber Health platform for healthcare providers. Medical facilities, rehab centers, clinics and hospitals can book rides for patients from a centralized dashboard – no app required. According to Techcrunch, Uber Health general manager Chris Weber noted some 3.6 million Americans miss appointments due to lack access to reliable transportation. Uber’s endeavors into health care trace back to 2014, when Uber first offered on-demand flu shots in large markets across the U.S. Since then there have been similar efforts throughout the world, from diabetes and thyroid testing in India, to subsidized rides for breast cancer screening in the U.S., to many more. Last summer, over 100 healthcare organizations joined the platform during a private beta. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Events
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like