Spring has arrived and with spring comes the Easter holiday. With the Easter holiday and spring also come spring and Easter pets such as baby chicks, ducklings, and baby rabbits. Many parents love to buy their children these pets as Easter gifts. However, there are a few things parents should consider, according to The Roanoke Times, before buying their children these live Easter gifts.
What child wouldn’t want a live Easter bunny as a special gift? Parents always give in to their children too because they want to make them happy. However, as a parent, you will need to consider a few things before buying a live rabbit for your child’s Easter present.
· Consider how long before your child gets tired of this live gift. Rabbits can live for up to 10 years so make sure everyone in the family is on board to care for it.
· Rabbits also need a good bit of room to be able to roam around and move comfortably. This means having a cage for it about 6 times the size of an adult rabbit’s body.
· Rabbits can get pretty big depending on the breed. They can weigh between two and 10 pounds as they get older.
· They eat a lot. They can actually eat up to two cups of fresh vegetables, a few small servings of rabbit pellets as well as a lot of grass and water daily.
· They will need spayed or neutered. The female can end up with a uterine cancer if not spayed and the male will actually spray their urine if not neutered. They also mate like crazy. This is where the saying comes in that ‘they breed like rabbits.’
· They will need you to take them outside and let them hop around the yard a little with someone watching them because they need exercise too.
· They also poop a lot so their cages will need to be cleaned out every day or at least every other day. You should also have a litter box inside their cage for them to ensure they don’t lay in their own feces or urine.
· Rabbits also shed a lot so keep this in mind when you are thinking of buying one.
· Many pet stores don’t even carry them anymore so you might have to visit an animal shelter to find one.
After carefully thinking about all of this and you still decide to buy one for your family, make sure to take care of the bunny like it is a part of the family.
Baby chickens might be cute at first but they do grow into adult chickens and will need a lot of care. Here are some things to consider before buying them for your children and family.
· They are messy and carry salmonella. This can be especially dangerous for children if they touch a baby chick and don’t wash their hands and then put their hands into their mouth.
· They will need a heat source and almost constant care for their first few weeks of life.
· They, like anything else, poop a lot so they will need thick bedding which will need to be changed a lot.
· Make sure the town or area you live in even allows you to have them.
· Adult chickens will need a lot of room to roam around outside.
· Some states, such as Virginia, requires you to buy no less than 6 chicks at a time so you can’t just buy one in certain places and think that will be alright.
· Baby chicks need special starter food with grit included in it that helps them to digest it properly.
· Be careful of predators because wild animals love to eat baby chicks and adult chickens.
Keeping these things in mind before buying baby chicks for your children will help you decide whether or not to even buy them for them.
Ducklings bought as pets are different than those in the wild. They are heavier than the wild ducks which makes them easier prey as they get older. Here are some things to consider before buying your children and family a few ducklings.
· Ducks poop everywhere and are very messy. This means they can spread salmonella to anyone who touches them and doesn’t wash their hands afterwards.
· They need constant care just like baby chicks. They need a heat source as well as a pen to roam around in.
· They can live more than 10 years so be prepared to be taking care of them for a while.
· Because they are easy prey to predators, they will need a pen with proper netting on top to help protect them.
· Some domesticated ducks don’t fly and will also need a lot of room to roam around.
· They get messy from the water and dirt they play around in.
· Ducklings will need short and supervised swims until they are at least a month old. This means you will either need a kiddie pool for them. Of course, if you live near a pond, this will work even better for them.
Ducklings need lots of care and for a long time. Make sure to let your family know everything they will need before buying one or more for them. They can be friendly and sociable but will need too much care for a child to do for them. Consider a stuffed duckling as an Easter gift for your children instead. That is unless you live on a farm.