. is keeping dogs for companionship haram?

Q:

AOA, I have a question. is keeping dogs for companionship haram? Are dogs impure? If angels of mercy do not enter a place with dogs, why did Ashab e Kaif had a dog? If a dogs saliva is impure, why are we allowed to eat something hunted by a dog? 

A:

Wa alaykum assalamu wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh.

In the Name of Allah, the All-Merciful, the Mercy-Giving.

All praise is due to Allah. Peace and blessings be upon Prophet Muhammad.

It is prohibited to keep a dog for no legitimate reason. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Whoever keeps a dog for any reason other than hunting or guarding one’s cattle or property will lose equal to two Qirat (a certain amount) out of his rewards every day.” (Muslim)

He also stated in another report that: “Angels do not enter a house where there is a dog or an image.” (An-Nasa’i and Ibn Majah)

For these and similar prophetic reports the majority of scholars declared the prohibition of keeping dogs except for the reasons mentioned in the hadith; that is, for hunting or for guarding one’s properties. Obviously, the Companions of the Cave had a legitimate reason to keep the dog.

Regarding its najasah (impurity), it is the dog’s saliva that is najis (ritually impure), not its entire body, according to the most preponderant opinion among scholars. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) has taught us how to remove the impurity of its saliva from any object when he said, “To purify any of your utensils when it is licked by a dog you have to wash it seven time using soil in the first one.” (Muslim)

As for that part of the animal bitten by the hunting dog, the majority of Muslim jurists have divided into two groups in this regard: One group maintains that this bitten part becomes najis as well and must be purified by washing it seven time using soil in the first one.

The other group, however, opines that although the dog’s saliva is impure (najis), such impurity is pardonable in this case and does not have to be cleansed, because the Quran allowed Muslims to eat such hunted games dictating “So eat from what they catch for you.” (Al-Ma’idah 5:4)

Moreover, they support their view by referring to the practice of hunting with dogs during the lifetime of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) who did not issue a command to wash these parts bitten by the dogs. They further argue that the pardon given by the Sshariah in this case aims to remove hardship from people, which goes in conformity with the objectives of the Shariah.

Allah knows best.

Thursday, Jan. 01, 1970 | 00:00 - 00:00 GMT

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