Spring is a great time to hop on down to a local animal shelter to find out if a rabbit is the right pet for your family.

Santa Barbara County’s three community animal shelters are temporary homes to more than 150 rabbits right now. During April, the regular price of adoption will be reduced from $25 to $20 for the first adopted rabbit and $12 for the second adopted rabbit. Adopting a shelter rabbit will save a life of a homeless pet.

Rabbits are highly social but fragile creatures that require regular interaction with their human family. They reproduce quickly and should be spayed or neutered to reduce overpopulation as well as for behavioral and health reasons. Rabbits need a balanced diet and regular veterinary care. With proper care, a rabbit can live to be 7 to 10 years old.

Aside from being fluffy and cute, rabbits are also very intelligent animals. With proper training, a rabbit can be taught to use a litter box, become clicker trained and be taught an array of tricks. Rabbits need regular mental and physical stimulation to live a happy and healthy life.

Adopting a rabbit has many benefits. They don’t require that you to hop out of bed early in the morning to take them for a walk; rabbits are content playing around the house or apartment. You will never be bothered by loud animal noises. Owning a pet is known to reduce blood pressure and improve health.

Adopting a rabbit should be a family decision. Click here for more information on rabbit care and the joys of owning a rabbit. Rabbit volunteers are available at all three Santa Barbara County shelters to help answer questions and ensure you are matched up with the perfect rabbit.

All rabbits adopted from Santa Barbara County shelters are spayed and neutered. All three of the shelters are open from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday for adoptions.

Spring into action by visiting one of the three shelters: the Santa Maria Animal Center at 548 W. Foster Road, the Santa Barbara Shelter at 5473 Overpass Road and the Lompoc Shelter at 1501 W. Central Ave.

— Susan Klein-Rothschild is a public information officer for the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department.