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Easter is fast approaching and many parents will be faced with a cherub-faced child begging for a new bunny or chick. I urge you to avoid giving into this plea. Easter is one of the most horrid times for new chicks and rabbits, and most chicks and bunnies wind up meeting terrible fates.

Easter is a holiday about resurrection and renewal. It isn’t about abuse or abandoning. In fact, it traditionally has nothing to do with rabbits or birds. But since the public has utilized the rabbit and chick as icons of the holiday, it’s important to educate our youngsters on their proper care. (A Guide to Basic Rabbit Care will help you). 

Rather than buying a new Easter chick or rabbit, please consider introducing your child to these activities.

1. Buy a book

The Bunnies & Kitties book is a wonderful collection of fur and friendship. There is nothing cuter than a book filled with pictures of kittens and bunnies.  The gift book is about 128 pages of adorable photos and fun captions that any child (or adult) will love. By the way, here’s one from page 41: “What do you call three bunnies hopping backwards? A receding hare line”). 

Written by Cate Holly, this is a book that will keep your kids active.

2. Make a Chocolate Bunny or an Edible Nest

Any kid who complains about receiving a delicious bar of chocolate should not have a rabbit anyway. Making chocolate Easter nests are loads of fun for the entire family. Here is a delicious recipe you can try with your kids from Life and Kitchen.

3. Visit an animal rescue

There are many wonderful animal rescues who actually focus their efforts on rescuing rabbits and there are many bird sanctuaries. Look for one in your area. They often encourage visits, but please call ahead of time. This is an excellent time to teach children the value of volunteer work.

4. Make a birdhouse

This is a wonderful activity for children and it benefits the avian friends in your yard. We found a wonderful birdwatching app on iTunes (MerlinBirdID) that helps you identify birds in your backyard. It’s very easy to use and it can help teach children about the birds that frequent your area.

There are many plans for making birdhouses at 50Birds.

5. Make toys for a rescue

 Check out this article on making inexpensive toys for rabbits and this one on how to make toys for birds. Most rescues have specific guidelines on what they will accept, so be sure you call ahead and make sure you have approval before dropping off a basket of homemade toys.

We found an entire 1-lb bucket of wood pieces that you can use to make your own rabbit and bird toys on Amazon.

There are many ways to engage children in the fun of Spring (and particularly Easter)without endangering the life of an animal.

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stacymantle
Author: stacymantle
About the Author

Stacy Mantle is a freelance writer who currently resides in the southwestern deserts of Arizona with a few dogs, several cats, and a very understanding husband. She is a regular contributor to Pet Age Magazine, Catster, Animal Behavior College, and of course, PetsWeekly. Many of her stories and articles have been translated into several languages, and now reach an international audience. She is also the author of a bestselling urban fantasy/thriller, Shepherd's Moon; a humor book entitled, Conquering the Food Chain: Living Amongst Animals (Without Becoming One), and a line of Educational Activity Books for children.


Critter Facts

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