HELP­FUL HINTS

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - STYLE - HELOISE Send a money- or time-sav­ing hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San An­to­nio, Texas 78279-5000; fax to (210) 435-6473; or email

DEAR HELOISE: My kids want a rab­bit as a pet. Are they good pets? Are they ex­pen­sive to care for? What hints do you have for car­ing for a rab­bit?

— Jody D., Illi­nois DEAR READER: Jody, rab­bits are cute, and they can be ex­cel­lent pets. Here are some hints to keep in mind:

You can train the rab­bit to use a lit­ter box.

A rab­bit is quiet, so no bark­ing!

Your pet rab­bit needs human in­ter­ac­tion. Rab­bits are in­door an­i­mals. An out­side cage is a big no-no.

A rab­bit will de­velop a fun per­son­al­ity, just like a dog or cat.

A lot of care is im­por­tant. Rab­bits are del­i­cate crea­tures and can’t be han­dled roughly, and chil­dren need to un­der­stand this. Rab­bits can bite and kick.

Re­gard­ing ex­penses: An in­door crate is nec­es­sary, which can run about $100; the an­i­mal will need med­i­cal check­ups with a vet­eri­nar­ian, in­clud­ing a spay or neuter; spe­cial rab­bit pel­lets; lots of fresh veg­eta­bles; hay for bed­ding; and lit­ter.

Search res­cue groups to adopt a rab­bit. There are dif­fer­ent breeds. A larger breed usu­ally is bet­ter for kids.

Rab­bit-proof the house. Rab­bits are known to chew.

With some work, as all pets re­quire, a rab­bit will be a fun and lov­ing mem­ber of your fam­ily. Ask your vet­eri­nar­ian for more in­for­ma­tion about hav­ing a rab­bit as a pet.

Read­ers with rab­bits, sub­mit pic­tures of your pet rab­bit for our Pet Pal fea­ture.

DEAR HELOISE: My casseroles were too salty most of the time, so I started putting bits and pieces of corn chips and wheat chips in a plas­tic bag with bread­crumbs and giv­ing them a good shake.

The salt merges with the bread, and the chip bits are much nicer to use as a top­ping for the casse­role.

— Jane A., Ohio DEAR READ­ERS: Spray a ded­i­cated new tooth­brush with a bit of hair spray, and brush your eye­brows up. Care­fully snip any wild hairs that ap­pear. Then brush brows back into place.

DEAR HELOISE: Ev­ery time I see a live earth­worm on a side­walk, I care­fully move it to the near­est grassy area. Earth­worms are ben­e­fi­cial to the qual­ity of the soil and are a good food source for birds such as robins.

— Mary, via email

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