When the Easter Bunny Comes Home …

The following article was written by youth marketing coordinator and proud rabbit “parent” Courtney Smith.

The candy is eaten, the colorful baskets are stowed in the attic, and the tiny frilly socks and poofy pastel dresses are thrown in the back of the closet. The only semblance of Easter that remains are a few plastic eggs that are still MIA in the yard and a lonely bunny who went from celebrated icon to old news before he was just 2 months old.

That is how I found my second rabbit, Little Bun, who is now the life partner of my first rabbit, Edwin. Little Bun was crammed into a tiny cage in a photographer’s dark corner closet, thrown away like a set prop. His brothers and sisters were given away to parents who wanted to stuff them in baskets as a “surprise” for their children. He was only 2 months old and was already all alone and ignored.

However, his fate is not the worst of all the bunnies who are impulsively purchased in the sugar- and cottontail-induced frenzy that is Easter. Some do not find good homes. Many are turned over to animal shelters after kids grow bored with them, or, worse, they are let outside to be “free” and are very quickly hit by cars or eaten by other animals.

The truth is, rabbits are not good pets for children. They are nothing like the precious E.B. from Hop whom your children are imagining when they beg for a bunny. Even the Hop website has put a disclaimer discouraging viewers from running out of the theater and going straight to the pet store to buy their own “rock ‘n’ roll bunny.”

Real rabbits don’t play the guitar or the drums. They are prey animals and are therefore very scared and skittish. They don’t perform in rock concerts, and they usually hide during the day. Sometimes the only way you know that they have come out is that they have chewed something up, like your shoe or the wall.

If you can’t imagine the thought of having a somewhat anti-social, skittish, and possibly expensive (can you say specialty vet bills?!) little fluff ball of destruction hopping around your house for the next eight to 10 years, get your kids a chocolate version of their new favorite bunny instead!

If you find that you still want to give a bunny a good home after your candy has digested, there will be plenty of rejected Easter bunnies who will need loving caretakers in the next couple of months. Head to your local animal shelter and adopt!

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  • mistymoon commented on April 21, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    SAme thing happend to me 2 Easters ago i found a white rabbit and he was so scared i took him in gave him a home.. i litter trianed it spent a lot of money he only lived 2 years i was heartbroken seems like he wasn’t as healthy as i thought he was the time he spent with whom ever may have proven fatal and sadly parents think its cool to surprise their kids with a bunny and have no clue how hard it is.. Im vegan and i loved all the hard work i did for him. and terribly miss him but i wont run out and support the domestication in small apartments or homes that don’t intend to provide a natural loving responsible bunny owner they are intelligent but wild and do as they want.Im glad you are helping him great post!

  • VeggieLiz commented on April 21, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    I totally agree. I have a number of rescue rabbits who were dumped by owners that got bored, and whilst they are amazing companions they take a lot of work. Its far too easy to buy a ‘pet’ on a whim and then neglect or abandon it.

  • Katherine commented on April 21, 2011 at 3:28 pm

    Great post Courtney. 🙂 I miss Edwin and Little Bun. I hope they are doing well.

  • Hannah D commented on April 21, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    Just got a bunny last week and I love her to death!

  • Hannah D commented on April 21, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    Just got a bunny last week and I love her to death!

  • Mrs. Mercer commented on April 21, 2011 at 4:31 pm

    Great piece of advise….. I’m glad that little bun has a good home with you now.

  • Mouse commented on April 21, 2011 at 7:36 pm

    Great article, I’ve added part of it (and a link to your website) on my blog. Happy Easter 🙂

  • chelsie sullivan commented on April 21, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    i love bunnys and my mom always taught me to treat animals right.i found a bunny that i want to adout that no one else wants till i saw him.

  • Foffie's mom commented on April 22, 2011 at 12:06 pm

    I rescued an angora, female bunny from people who could no longer take care of her. She is high maintenance and has shown to be quite destructive. Vet bills are high for rabbits because only a select vet with experience will see your bunny! Specialists get big bucks in all areas of medicine. She’s beautiful, trainable, very messy (they deposit their “pills” everywhere) and sometimes loveable (bunnies are very independent)so be sure you get a book and study up before making that choice of pet. I agree, they are NOT for children, or teens for that matter.

  • Katharina commented on May 1, 2011 at 5:49 pm

    It’s not just bunnies–don’t by ANY pet for Easter or otherwise unless you are prepared to care for it properly for the rest of its life. This article,, for instance, recommends goldfish bowls–bad idea! Here is an editorial I wrote in response:

  • Maxy commented on April 3, 2012 at 2:14 pm

    My daughter has got a dwarf rabbit so cute loving and sweet and he is treated like a king . She takes good care of him and i am dreading the moment when he has to do to a better place as it will be very hard for her to accept

  • Carmen R Gagliardi commented on April 3, 2012 at 2:24 pm


  • Ellie McCaffrey commented on April 3, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    No pet should be bought specifically for children until they’re old enough to understand responsibility. Childrens minds are too immature.Next week they want something else.

  • Josine commented on April 3, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    Fluff balls of destruction they are! But I do love my two bunnies with all of my heart. Good thing to add is that bunnies need to be with at least one other bunny, because they live in groups in their natural habitat. There are a lot of bunnies out there living a very lonely life, alone in their cage. All your love can’t replace the company of a fellow bunny… at this very moment Flopsy is washing the ears of Sophie, adorable 🙂

  • Alexandra commented on April 3, 2012 at 3:21 pm

    Hi, i highly disagree with this article. I Have a pet rabbit that i love so much! He snuggles with me and licks my face. I got him in november. Is this article basicly saying that rabbits do not make good pets? Because in my opinion they do.

  • Ryan S commented on April 3, 2012 at 4:54 pm

    Ms. Smith,

    I just had to write to say that you have single-handedly made me reconsider my position that PETA is chock full of hypocritical eco-terrorists. This is a well-written piece of advice, and a touching story, and I’m glad Little Bun found a wonderful, caring home with you. Thank you for being a wonderful human being.

  • Saga commented on April 4, 2012 at 3:19 am

    It’s so sad to read… I wish people would understand that animals are NOT to be given to children unless an adult is willing to take care of its well-being. I have two adopted rabbits – the other one I adopted from an animal shelter and the other from a girl that didn’t have enough time for her pet. They’re both very adorable and I can’t even imagine giving up on them, abandoning them.

  • hdmorse76 commented on April 6, 2012 at 9:24 am

    Ok first the author had amazing points. Just bc ur rabbit is fab they’re not for everyone was the point. Also I too had issues with PETA I wouldn’t go as far as Eco terrorist but I thought they had a skewed vision of the truth roaming the site I realized I was the ignorant one. I agree don’t buy any holiday pet or hot dog bc of a movie ie Dalmation craze. Be responsible. Be kind to furry friends!!

  • Savannah commented on May 3, 2012 at 1:05 am

    My rabbit companion , Usagi, is my best friend on this entire planet. I love him so much. You wouldn’t believe how many people were at my local rabbit shelter wanting to get rabbits for Easter. Good thing that the store is very reluctant on selling animals during Easter week!

  • Tyler commented on July 18, 2012 at 6:46 pm

    If you get a chocolate bunny make sure it is fair trade as humans are animals and slave labor is not humane. To learn more about chocolate slave labor visit:

  • bob commented on September 27, 2012 at 4:23 pm

    that bunny so cute! what the?

  • april commented on August 28, 2014 at 11:56 pm

    Bunnies make great pets for sensible owners. You need to cautious about what you are getting into but they are no more expensive or high maintenance than a dog or cat ~ if they are properly cared for. We have a busy home here but prospective owners need to be prepared to make changes in their home and schedule for any new addition. Nice article for the point it’s trying to make but my daughter got a dwarf rabbit for Easter 4 years ago and believe me she’s no dwarf as we were told. She’s not as social or playful either, but she’s beautiful and sweet when she doesn’t grunt at me for rearranging her housing and my daughter absolutely adores her and has learned SO much about caring for another being and loving another being even when you don’t get quite what you expect to! Shame on those who do not accept the responsibility for caring for them when they get them, but for responsible owners rabbits are a fine pet.

  • patricio p commented on April 2, 2015 at 11:31 am

    easter bunny can you come to ixtapa to deliver the treats on saturday before i live to mexico please

  • Christian Phillips commented on August 11, 2015 at 9:48 pm

    I have protested against Sea World twice tonight. Peta, is it Ok that my dog is vegan?

  • sydney commented on August 28, 2015 at 9:51 pm

    I had a rabbit that was a house pet we just found tons of them turned up in our yard!