Popular pet shop chain to stop selling rabbits over Easter weekend

Pets at Home stores across the North East have put a stop to the selling or rehoming of rabbits over Easter weekend.

The initiative is not only in place throughout North East stores but also in every store throughout the United Kingdom. The popular pet shop chain has said the idea is to ‘educate and inform children on the importance of responsible pet ownership.’

Pets at Home has stores in Alnwick, Berwick, Byker, Consett, Durham, Cramlington, Gateshead, Hexham, Kingston Park, Morpeth, North Shields, South Shields, Sunderland and Washington.

Caroline Morrissey, a worker at a rabbit sanctuary, is in favour of the initiative and said: “I work at a rabbit sanctuary where we care for 100 rabbits that were once someone’s pet or Easter gift or birthday treat. Ideally Pets at Home should stop selling livestock altogether. Rabbits in a store are often bought on a whim, or from pester power, without a thought to the welfare needs of such a complex species.”

Peter Pritchard, CEO (Retail) at Pets at Home, said: “We pride ourselves on putting pets before profit so we’ve taken the decision not to sell rabbits during the upcoming Easter weekend. Nor will customers be able to adopt rabbits in need of rehoming from our in store adoption centres.”

Pritchard added: “Our informative workshops help families understand what’s involved in being a responsible rabbit owner. What’s more they’re also a fun and free way for children to get up close and personal with some furry friends during the holidays.”

Rabbit keeper Cherry Mallam also spoke to SR News and said: “What a thoughtful idea however it would be even better if they didn’t sell rabbits at all and only did adoption. More rescue bunnies will get homed this way but even then, there is no guarantee they will be properly looked after.”

Pets at Home stores across the North East and UK will stop selling rabbits from 9am on Good Friday until close of business on Monday April 17. The public will then be able to buy or adopt rabbits again from Tuesday April 18.

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