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Thursday, April 7, 2011

Beware the Easter bunny; he may not be an easy pet |

Every year in the weeks and months after Easter, a wave of rabbits turns up at animal shelters, abandoned by people who bought them for the holiday but changed their minds.

Turns out, cute little bunnies can be challenging pets. If you're thinking about getting one for Easter or any other time, here are a few things to keep in mind from Marc Morrone, host of Hallmark Channel's "Pet keeping with Marc Morrone," where one of his side kicks is a rabbit named Harvey, brought to him by police who found him abandoned 10 years ago.

—Rabbits can be trained to walk on a leash or harness, but you can't let them play freely outside; they are prey to snakes, hawks, owls, dogs, foxes, cats, raccoons and people. "Bunnies are an animal that the entire world eats," Morrone said. "Bunnies live in a state of perpetual anxiety that somebody's going to eat them. Once they realize no one is going to eat them, they relax and you can see their true nature come out."

—You must be prepared to commit to pet care for about a decade. Rabbits usually live eight to 12 years and can only be called bunnies for about six months.

Beware the Easter bunny; he may not be an easy pet |

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