January 08, 2009

Canine Pets

Please tell me I'm not alone on this one! I dislike dogs. And my reason isn't just religious but also personal. I am not too comfortable with having a dog sniff me or come close to me. They make me nervous and the stories I hear about dogs mauling their owners, children and even strangers makes me want to run miles away in the opposite direction.

Living in a western country where dogs are a common household pet, it's difficult to not come across one when you step out of your house. They're everywhere! I've seen myself do numerous things when I spot a dog, and most of the stuff makes me laugh out loud or sometimes drown in embarassment when I think about it after I'm safely back home. To name a few - trace my steps back to where I began if I see a dog walking towards me; climbing on to children's playground equipment if I see a dog in the area; wait till the neighbour puts the dog on leash or locks them up inside their house before I step outside; do a quick 'dog-check' everytime I leave the house to make sure no dogs (or any other pets for that matter) are wandering around etc. (Ok, so now you're probably thinking I'm crazy and need to get my self checked out.)

I've noticed that some dog owners are somehow aware of Muslims and their phobia with dogs, which is good in a way. Because everytime they see a hijabi around they make sure their dog is at a fairly safe distance & it also saves me from looking like a complete fool by trying different techniques to avoid them.

We've had some rather embarassing moments with our neighbours who recently moved into the house opposite ours. They have an overly enthusiastic dog, to say the least, and he loves jumping on to everyone. DD1 has had a few screaming episodes when he has approached her and not to mention our body language a few times has made it clear to them that we are not the type who are going to go all mushy over their pets friendly nature.

Dogs are considered impure in Islam. There are certain rulings on what a Muslim should do when his clothing or utensils in which he eats comes in contact with a dog. It is not permitted to keep a dog unless it is for a purpose, like hunting or guarding property or other uses that are not contrary to the Sharee’ah, and even then there are many conditions that should be met. The Prophet (pbuh) said:
"Whoever keeps a dog, except a dog for herding, hunting or farming, his reward will decrease by one qiraat every day." (Reported by Muslim, 2948).
The ruling on touching a dog (taken from www.islamqa.com)

If you touch it when it is not wet, then your hand does not become impure, but if you touch it when it is wet, this means that the hand becomes impure, according to the opinion of many scholars, and the hand must be washed seven times, one of which should be with earth.

With regard to vessels, if a dog has licked a vessel (i.e., drunk from it), then the vessel must be washed seven times, one of which should be with earth, as was proven in al-Saheehayn and elsewhere, in the hadeeth narrated from Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) who said that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “If a dog licks the vessel of any one of you, let him wash it seven times, one of which should be with earth.” It is better if the washing with earth be the first washing. And Allaah knows best.


  1. Though I don't have a fear of dogs .... when I am out and enounter one I hop around to make sure it doesn't touch me ;-)
    I am sure that alone tells ppl that Muslims don't want to be around dogs ! Last week my sister took my kids out and she said a dog came over to DS and licked his face. She didn't even wash it !!!

  2. I didn't mind dogs much until after I had the baby. Now I can't stand them! They terrify me and I see red as soon as they get near me because I'm thinking of the baby.

  3. Shame on You sis, Its a Dog, its an animal created by Allah - Why do you fear it? Why do you run from it, Hold ur ground & be brave!! My sis if you knew what a shepard or a goat herder thought of a dog, then you would know how thankful they are of it. or the women who has no family, but only a guard dog to protect her then you would know of it.

  4. In respond to "anonymous"s comment:

    I never said I fear dogs. I fear Allah alone. The reason I don't like coming in contact with a dog is because of their impurity (and I have provided hadith to support this).
    If you re-read my post, I have mentioned that there are special cases in which Islam allows people to have a dog and herders, guide dogs etc come under this cateogary.
    Allah created both good and bad. That doesn't mean we should embrace the bad just because it's a creation of Allah swt.

  5. Coffee Catholic:

    I hear you! It's amazing how when you're a mother you see the world in a different perspective and you prioritize everything differently. You put your child ahead of everything and all else is secondary.
    I'm always on gaurd when my kids are around animals - not just dogs. You never know what could make them go crazy and want to hurt your child.

  6. LoL Nabz funny post. I am ur internet stalker. I was googling duaa for the sick person and look whose blog I came across ;)
    I have a half fear of dogs, I am not scared of friendly looking dogs like labs and such but the mean looking ones...keep em away. It might make you feel better to know I am petrified of magpies...seriously I won't go outside in spring. I HATE them and if I see one while walking I have a panic attack literally.
    Something funny about a dog...when I went away recently, I was packing up the car to leave. I finished, put the kids in the car then ran inside to do a last minute check. It was a hot day and the windows where down and my drivers seat door was open. The neighbours dog ran over (a very over excited labrador) and jumped in the car. Alhamdullilah my eldest isn't too afraid but when my one year old started freaking out the eldest started screaming "get away from Adammm"LMAO!! Anyway the extremely apologetic owners came and took him. I had to tell my eldest that the dog just wanted to say hello.
    Anyway long boring story lol but maybe sounds funnier in person lol
    Incase you haven't worked it out...it's Sammii

  7. Awh sam nice to see you posting!! You know when I was reading your comment the whole time I was trying to figure out who my 'stalker' would be and when I reached the magpie part I was 100% sure it was you ;) HEHEHE
    Lol @ your dog incident. If something like that happened to me - omg I don't know what I'd do. Haha.