Pet experts advise parents not to buy kids animals for Easter - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Pet experts advise parents not to buy kids animals for Easter

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They are cute and they are cuddly, but pet experts say bunnies and chicks probably are not the Easter gift you expect them to be.

"Unfortunately it's usually an impulse decision to buy you child a bunny and that's not when to do it," Dr. Carol Eckhardt, St. Joseph Co. Humane Society Director.

Eckhardt she says a major issue is most kids do not understand what they are getting when they ask for a bunny or chick for Easter.

"The animal] is not a toy," said Eckhardt. "I've told people to go get a stuffed toy more than once because this is something that a child shouldn't be handling all the time and it's an animal. It's a living being and there's respect to this."

Tractor Supply Company sells individual chicks at their stores, but even they think it is not the best idea to put one in your children's Easter basket.  Steve Kruse, from Kruse Farm Supply agrees.

"They're cute when they're three or four days old, then they get into that ugly duckling stage after about a week or so and the kids don't want them so much anymore," said Kruse.

That's the main problem with buying a chick or a bunny as an Easter-impulse buy. Kruse and Eckhardt say when that happens, the kids usually get bored with them after Easter day.

They also say that doesn't mean chicks and bunnies make for bad pets as long as you and your family are willing and ready to work.

"Kids can get a lot of education out of [raising a pet]," said Kruse. "A lot of times in this day and age people haven't seen baby animals or ever raised them, so it's good for children to learn how to do that."

The St. Joseph Co. Humane Society actual prohibits the adoption of rabbits leading up to Easter, but after the holiday they are more than willing to work with families. They want to find the animals homes that are the right fit.

"The best thing to do is to wait until after Easter," said Eckhardt. "If the child still wants the bunny and is going to take care of it just explain all the care that it needs and those kinds of things that's fine."

Tractor Supply Company provides pointers on raising chicks on this website: http://tscchickdays.com/.

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