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Pets as Giveaways: A Cruel Practice During Easter

Posted by siyerwin on Sunday, April 05, 2009 at 4:19 PM

A little reminder for everyone looking forward to the Holy Week observance. While this time of the year probably gives a little breathing room for many food animals out there (since Philippines is a predominantly Catholic, whose members are obliged to abstain from meat), there is still that thing that we do during the celebration of Easter that we need to watch out for.

Every Easter, many commercial establishments go on hyper-drive promotional activities that should be all good except that they are sometimes cruel to pet animals.

Imagine this:

You and your family go out to celebrate Easter by going to the mall to join the festivities. You arrive there, go have some fun, perhaps hunt for a few Easter eggs and win prizes. Great! But wait... Did I hear them say I won an Easter bunny or chick? A real live bunny? A rabbit? A chick?

Oh, neat. But does it come with a cage? How do we carry it around being that we are planning to head on to the park after this to spend some more quality time? Can we leave it inside the car? It won't poop inside my car, will it? What if it gets sick? Will it bite?

Are you seeing the picture here? Can you guess how these things usually end up?

The fact is having live animals as pets is not as simple as winning a toy prize. Pets are not toys because they entail a lot of responsibility. Giving live animals as prizes or giveaways is cruel because the animals get the raw end of the deal when the are given to people who most likely are unprepared for the things that come with having pet animals in their lives.

I have been told of stories of bunnies suffocating to death after being left inside parked cars in the basements of malls that gave them away to the unwitting mall goers. I'm pretty sure there are more such occurrences out there.

Do not support business establishments that resort to this cruel promotional gimmicks. If you see them doing this, let them know your protest.

One more thing: Don't buy pets from these Philippine malls!!!!

I found some great stuff about this topic from this Rabbit Rescue website. Let me just quote a part of one of their articles:

The end result of almost all Easter rabbits is usually one of:

  • The rabbit dies within weeks, from unintentional neglect or cruelty, due to mishandling, improper diet, unrecognized illness, etc

  • The rabbit is kept in an outdoor hutch and forgotten about, and lives a substantially shortened life from lack of care and love (see housing)

  • The rabbit is kept caged indoors with no opportunity for exercise, and lives a shortened life from atrophy and general distress (see health and playtime)

  • The rabbit is set loose outside (this is a death sentence - the average life expectancy for a domestic rabbit released in the wild is three days, and it dies a horrible death from predators or thoughtless humans)

  • The rabbit is brought to a shelter, where chances are good it will be euthanized if no one adopts it quickly

  • The rabbit is killed by its owner because it is an inconvenience (see the alerts page for some examples of this)

  • The rabbit dies before its first birthday, usually due to ignorance or improper care


Some More Rabbit Facts:

- Rabbits, like cats and dogs and any other pet animals, are big responsibilities. They live almost as long as cats and dofs and are not "low-maintenance" pets

- They are a poor choice as a pet for children (they have germs, they bite and scratch!)

- Your home must be bunny-proofed or they will wreak havoc and chew your furniture and your electrical cords

- They must be neutered and spayed or else they will do what they do in the wild: mark territories (urinate on stuff) and multiply (make little baby bunnies)

- Pet rabbits are indoor animals and you should keep them there. They will die within days outside!

Recommended:
Bunnies at Easter: A Sad Story
3 Bunnies Rabbit Rescue
Easter Bunny' Fever: Don't Catch It! - Bunny picture above courtesy of this site

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Please do not leave your email or contact numbers in the comments. Email me directly at sherwin @ mefindhome.org if you have concerns or questions. This blog is increasingly attracting breeders/pet sellers trying to advertise their business through the comments and I don't want that. The blog seems to also be becoming a bulletin board of sorts for people who wish to abandon their pets. Blogger.com allows no way to edit your comments so there I have no other option but to delete comments that I deem inappropriate in this regard. I apologize for the inconvenience. Again, if you have any questions/concerns, better to email me at sherwin @ mefindhome.org than to comment here. Thank you very much!

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