The Seattle Animal Shelter encourages people to think twice before purchasing a live bunny, duckling or chick as an Easter gift this holiday season.
“People often don’t think about these cute little animals growing up into adult animals that require a commitment to provide daily care for the rest of their lives,” says Seattle Animal Shelter Director Don Jordan. “Rabbits, for example, are not so easy to keep. They require a lot of socialization and time and can’t just be left stuck in a cage. Bringing any animal into your home places demands on your time and financial resources and should be done only after carefully assessing your family’s ability to meet the animal’s needs.”
Unfortunately, each year after Easter, animal shelters are inundated with bunnies, ducklings, and chicks relinquished by people who bought them on a whim. Many must be euthanized due to a lack of available homes. Some animals given as Easter gifts are released into the wild when people tire of them. Unable to fend for themselves, the hapless creatures usually die of starvation or exposure to the elements, or are preyed upon by other animals.
In lieu of a live animal, the Seattle Animal Shelter encourages purchasing plush toys to give to children as Easter gifts. The Humane Society of the United States recommends consumers check to determine whether the item was made from real rabbit or other animal fur so the consumer can make an informed decision on whether or not to purchase the product.
Gift certificates are also available at the Seattle Animal Shelter and may be applied toward the adoption of a companion pet. To purchase a gift certificate, talk with an adoption counselor or preview animals for adoption, visit the Animal Shelter at 2061 – 15th Ave. W., approximately one mile south of the Ballard Bridge. The shelter is open Wednesday through Sunday, noon to 6 p.m. for adoptions and licensing.
For more information, call (206)386-PETS (7387). Information and photos of animals currently available for adoption are posted on the shelter’s web site at www.seattleanimalshelter.org