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Think first before giving real animals as Easter pets

Matt McGee
Instead of using real animals in an Easter basket, try going for a stuffed animal rabbit or duckling. Easter is April 24th this year.

An Easter basket full of goodies is a time-honored tradition for many people, but Regional Animal Services of King County is asking residents to think first before putting a bunny, chick, or duckling in that basket. The agency's Ken Nakatsu advises:

“Young animals are often given as pets this time of year. While they are cute and cuddly as babies, they eventually grow up. Pets require a long-term commitment to proper care and feeding. Too often those adult rabbits, chickens, and ducks end up in shelters or worse.”

Nakatsu says there are also other issues people should be aware of.

“Many birds, like chickens and ducks, carry salmonella. These bacteria can make people very sick. Every spring, there are a number of children who catch salmonella after receiving a chick or duckling for Easter.”

Instead of buying a live chick or bunny for a child, consider giving them a stuffed animal for Easter. You could also take them to a petting zoo or farm where they can see these animals in a more natural setting. And if you do decide to get a pet, check out the Regional Animal Services shelter in Kent. They have many dogs, cats, and other cuddly creatures looking for a forever home.

Easter Sunday is April 24th this year.

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