Thursday, January 5, 2012

Calling all bunny people - need your help - "Access Hollywood"

Got this from the Facebook pages for GHRS and HRS. You have to be a Facebook member to access it, so in case you are not, read on for excerpts; it includes links to the show's FB page and direct site:

• A few days ago Dana Kremples [Editor's note - A link to Dana's wonderful bunny health care info is included in the right-hand column under "Rabbit Resources"] who runs the Miami House Rabbit chapter caught an episode of  "Access Hollywood Live" and the host - Kit Hoover - had purchased a Holland Lop Rabbit for her child for Christmas and horribly slammed everything we stand for and try to avoid with people buying them for their children. Dana wrote an excellent letter ... below ....



Dear Access Hollywood Folks,
A recent segment on how your hosts spent the holidays included a very disturbing message.

The female host, Kit Hoover did a terrible disservice to those of us who spend most of our time and income rescuing unwanted, abandoned rabbits.

She took about three minutes to describe the "Christmas surprise" of a Holland Lop rabbit she and her husband got for their kids for the holiday, simply because they'd begged for it. She said that the breed was known to be "dumb but cute" (which is ridiculous; Holland Lops are one of the craftiest, sneakiest, liveliest and intelligent types of purebred rabbits), and that a few days after the holiday (and her cleaning the cage "like 10 times a day") the kids were finally "over the rabbit." She said this with clear relief.

Oh, really? Could she please tell me why she got the kids the rabbit to begin with if she didn't realize it was a serious, ten-year commitment? And that--like a kitten or puppy--a young rabbit needs house-training (not to mention spay or neuter), too? Was she clueless, or just callous?

And now what? Since the kids are "over the rabbit" will she take it to a shelter, where it will most likely be euthanized? Or will she--like many uninformed rabbit buyers--simply dump it in a park or on the side of the road to fend for itself? (Hint: Domestic rabbits DIE when you do this.)

Rabbits are the third most relinquished animals at shelters across the U.S., *precisely* because of attitudes like the one broadcast by your Access Hollywood host.

I hope Access Hollywood will consider making things right by inviting some of the compassionate, responsible celebrities (Clint Eastwood, Bob Barker, Amy Sedaris, to name only three) who share their hearts and homes with companion rabbits.

These people will tell you that rabbits are not "dumb" (quoting your host). But they *are* herbivores and prey animals who "speak" a language entirely different from that we've come to expect from dogs and cats.

Rabbits are complex, fascinating, and incredibly rewarding for those who have the patience and intelligence to learn how to properly care for and interact with them.

What rabbits are NOT, though, is low maintenance. They are NOT good pets for children or for adults who have not done their homework. Living with a house rabbit requires a level of maturity and commitment lacking in most adults, let alone children. It's very sad to see a person as visible and influential as your host making light of her impulse purchase of a helpless animal who will now very likely end up shuffled off to a shelter, or worse.

Thank you for listening, and for helping Access Hollywood be more responsible about such messages in the future. Living in a house full of long, furry ears, I do appreciate having a human ear bent my way when it comes to important matters like this.

Happy New Year to you!

Dana Krempels, Ph.D.
University of Miami Department of Biology
President, H.A.R.E., Inc.
(HouseRabbit Adoption, Rescue, and Education, Inc.)


So, go to Access Hollywood and leave them a message. It can be short. It should be respectful. But the numbers will count, so take a couple of minutes and leave a note.

If you are on Facebook, you can "Like" the comments left by others about this issue (the longer before you check it out, the further down the "wall" it moves). When you go to their page, be sure to click on "Everyone (Most Recent)" at the top of the column so that you can see comments posted by bunny-people.