Why You Should Adopt A Rabbit
Rabbits are pets that are most commonly bought from pet shops. Large pet shops have them running around in pens in the middle of the store where children can’t help but notice them, and it’s easy enough to see them as a low-maintenance and cheap pet.
They do make lovely first pets for children who are ready to take care of a pet and depending on the character of the individual rabbit you have chosen you could have a very active and interesting pet to watch and play with, or you could have a very cuddly, affectionate bunny.
They are also relatively easy to care for, although buying a decent-sized run and cage can be costly. The cost of feeding them and changing their bedding is fairly cheap, though vet bills can be astronomical – so it’s well worth paying a few pounds each month for a pet insurance policy just in case. They are ‘prey’ animals and so they will not normally show signs of illness until they are very, very unwell – by which time veterinary treatment might need to be extensive (if it is possible to help the rabbit at all) and will be expensive, so an insurance policy will be very much worth the money.
If you decide that you would like a pet rabbit, you might think that the easiest thing to do will be to nip down to the local pet shop and choose one. However, pets bought from pet shops will probably not have been checked by a vet for any ill health; they will probably not have been neutered or vaccinated; and the sexing of a rabbit by a pet shop can be very hit-and-miss (which could be disastrous if you were buying two ‘females’ and one turned out to be a male).
A pet shop might also not advise you that rabbits are social creatures and will want the company of humans and other rabbits: you should always keep a rabbit together with at least one other rabbit, with plenty of space for them to play and live in.
If rabbits don’t get enough company or attention from other rabbits and you, they can become depressed, bored and even aggressive. If you are buying two rabbits together, or are buying another rabbit to be a companion to an existing rabbit at home then it is important that you get the right advice about how best to introduce them to each other so that they will settle in well together.
Rabbits often end up at adoption centres run by animal charities such as the RSPCA because owners don’t want them anymore or cannot afford to care for them (especially if their rabbit is ill and needs veterinary treatment that they cannot pay for). The RSPCA arranges for a vet to check the rabbits in their care for any ill health and also arranges for them to be neutered and vaccinated; they are also treated for parasites such as worms and fleas.
If you adopt a rabbit, therefore, you are sure to get one that is healthy; the staff at the RSPCA will also be able to advise on the temperament of the rabbits in their care so that you can a rabbit that suits your family.
This is a guest post by Claire Sim a new Londoner, travel passionate and animal lover. She blogs about Pets and Travelling in Europe. If you want Claire to write you specific content, you can find email her here or contact her on Twitter (Claire_Sim).