Friday, January 21, 2011

Year of the Rabbit Unlucky for Rabbits

A Shanghai based online newspaper reports on an aspect of the Year of the Rabbit that is not a cause for celebration. The news is now being reported on CNN online. The article stated, “Huge numbers of live rabbits had been listed as hot "items" for sale on the country's leading e-commerce platforms.” Tragically the rabbits are taking too long in transport with fatal consequences. Some deliveries are taking 5 days. Plus, there are reports of “rough handling by transport workers, many who don't realize they are dealing with live animals as packages are often labeled ‘Fragile: Glass’ in a bid to avoid security checks.” Chinese law bans the transport of living animals without a certificate of quarantine. It is estimated there are more than 600 online vendors selling pet rabbits in China.
This news comes on the heels of an appeal by PETA in Beijing to discourage impulse buying of rabbits. The Year of the Rabbit only occurs once every 11 years and the festivities span twelve months. Whereas, the annual rabbit buying increase peaks for a few weeks at Easter in the United States. This puts the Year of the Rabbit in perspective with regard to the number of rabbits that could end up abandoned or worse. It seems the Year of the Rabbit isn’t so lucky for the rabbits. I’d have to agree with Maggie Chen of PETA who said, "There's no better time to help rabbits than during the Year of the Rabbit, and you can do so by refusing to support the pet trade that causes so many animals to suffer.”