The Year of Rabbit has dramatically increased the sales of rabbits during the Lunar New Year in Chinese cities. As a Wall Street Journal article pointed out: The fancy New Year’s gift can bring both laughter and trouble into Chinese families. Purchased as an auspicious gift for the New Year, the rabbit became a disaster when its owner discovered that the cable-TV cords, a pair of shoes, and a resume were bit by the cottontail.
However, right before the New Year’s Eve, animal rights group PETA urged Chinese consumers to stop adopting rabbits as household companions. It feared that once the fad is gone, rabbits might be abandoned. PETA released in a statement that rabbits are far from the ideal pet for most owners given that rabbits have fragile bones, require lots of exercise and gnaw on everything in sight.
Among the 12 Chinese zodiacs, rabbit and dog are relatively easier to raise as pets compared to the rest such as tiger or snake. In 2006, the year of dog, the number of dog owners increased by 10 percent according to SPCA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals-Hong Kong). When it came to 2007, the number of abandoned dogs increased by six percent. SPCA named such phenomena such “Zodiac Effect”. This year, the organization reminds potential rabbit owners to think twice before the purchase because the life expectancy of a rabbit is usually 8-10 years.
Lovely as they are, raising rabbits is a tough task. When improperly taken care of, rabbits can smell rather bad. If you are really in the mood of keeping your Bugs Bunny, browse the Internet for raising tips before you bring one home.