Best Places to Purchase or Adopt

Just like dogs and cats, rabbits and rodents are available in multiple types and breeds. With rabbits, The American Rabbit Breeders Association recognized 48 different breeds of rabbits.

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There are even different breeds of cavies (guinea pigs) hamsters, rats, and other rodents. Different colors are also more valued than others. Therefore, even with rabbits and rodents, there is an option to purchase "pure bred" or highly desired colors of rodents and rabbits. This article will go through the different purchase and adoption options of these animals and the pros and cons of each.

Buy From Pet Store

This is the first place that many people want to go to purchase their rabbit or rodent. Many pet stores, however, are not going to carry the most genetically sound animals. They are also not generally well handled. Also called hand training, animals that are held as young are much less likely to bite than those that are not. This is not the place that new pet owners will find high quality pure bred animals.

Pros:

  • Convenience
  • Young animals

Cons:

  • Animals often not hand trained
  • Pets could be from breeding mills
  • Have to purchase accessories
  • Have to provide veterinary care
  • Gender not guaranteed and often misassigned

Buy From Private Seller

People sell their rabbits and rodents all the time. These sales can be found all over the internet on ad websites. Sometimes people don't realize the time and care that these animals will need. For example, rabbits live 10-15 years and they need daily attention. Often these sales happen as cash sales and all the animal's accessories and cage is included. Buyers will find a large variety of animal quality, so its important to do research or even a vet check before spending large amounts of money.

Pros:

  • Usually come with cage and accessories
  • Often provided and cheap price

Cons:

  • No idea of gender or history
  • May need veterinary care
  • Animals are usually several years old
  • May have behavior problems

Buy From Private Breeder

Private breeders can be found for each animal throughout the country, especially in rural areas. Every year, children will participate in county and state fairs. Many of these children and adults alike will breed rabbits, cavies, and other rodents for show at the fair. This is an ideal time to purchase animals that have been carefully bred, handled since birth, and are economically priced. Other adult breeders who breed professionally can be found through the national breeding association of that animal. For example, the American Rabbit Breeder's Association, American Cavy Breeder's Association, or the American Fancy Rat and Mouse Association are all places to find exceptional animals.

Pros:

  • Highest quality
  • The ability to buy premium and exotic colors and breeds
  • Young animals
  • Animals are often hand trained

Cons:

  • Can be expensive depending on quality
  • Have to buy accesories
  • May need veterinary care

Adopt Through County Shelter

Believe it or not, people surrender rabbits and rodents to county shelters as well as cats and dogs. Small animals at the county shelter are often very inexpensive, and adopting an animal this way comes with the knowledge that it will not be put down at a shelter.

Pros:

  • Often animals have been examined by a vet
  • If appropriate, animals may be spayed/neutered
  • Inexpesive
  • Animal will not be euthanized

Cons:

  • Animals are usually older
  • No telling where animal comes from

Adopt Through Private Association

Besides a private breeder, this is probably the best place to get a rabbit or rodent. Private adopters will provide veterinary examination, a thorough temperament check, and spay/neuter if appropriate. Usually the fees to adopt are relatively low.

Pros:

  • Animals are vet checked
  • Temperament check means that people know what they're getting

Cons:

  • Animals are older
  • These animals are usually not pure bred or exotic colors

Overall, the best place to adopt or purchase a rabbit or rodent is through either a private breeder or a private adoption association. Although the costs may be higher up front, the animals are from an ethical source and are well behaved.

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