Don't buy novelty Easter pets for children unless you are prepared to make a serious commitment to care for the animal the Humane Society of Utah is urging parents.

Katharine Brant, director of development for the society, said the public is often inundated with suggestions to buy baby chickens, ducks and rabbits at this time of year. She said the animals often suffer at the hands of children who do not understand how fragile the small pets are. While sellers no longer dye the animals in garish colors, Brant said, many die painful deaths because of mistreatment and neglect."We'd like to encourage everyone to think carefully before buying an Easter animal and, if they don't want to take the responsibility of caring for the pet seriously, buy a cute stuffed toy instead."