Original thread can be found here: forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=239954
I was on Google searching for some info about dogs and ran across an old thread on this forum about dogs in Islam. I didn’t want to post on it so I thought I’d start a new one… it just drives me nuts when Muslims speak poorly of dogs based on cultural biases that have nothing to do with Islam.
First, I am Muslim.
Second, I own a Pitbull and have owned German Shephards in the past.
Third, Islam does not ban owning dogs.
When interpreting Islamic law it is important to understand that the Quran supercedes everything. Everything. This includes Hadiths.
Now, most of the hadiths concerning dogs come from Abu Hurairah. “Abu” means father and “Hurairah” means “little cats.” In sum, the name means “Father of little cats.” I mention this so that you, and my fellow Muslims, can begin to understand why someone named “Father of Little Cats” might have some bias towards dogs.
When a Hadith and the Quran contradict each other, the Quran always supercedes. One of the most common hadiths (attributed to guess who… Abu Hurairah!) Muslims like to quote when talking about dogs is how an Angel will not enter a home with a dog. However, the Quran relates the biblical story of the 7 sleepers who had a dog guarding the mouth of their cave. Angels had no problem entering. Therefore, since the Hadith appears to create a rule that is directly contradicted by the Quran, it must be dismissed.
It’s like if someone found a hadith that stated you could eat pork. Since it is expressly forbidden in the Quran, that hadith would be disregarded. The same is true here.
Prior to the modern era, Muslim scholars had a variety of opinions concerning dogs. For example: The Maliki school holds that a dog is pure even its saliva. The Shafi’i and one of two narrations of Ibn Hanbal schools state that a dog is impure even its fur. The Hanafi and the other narration of Ibn Hanbal schools maintain that a dog’s saliva is impure while its fur is pure. Hence, there are a variety of opinions regarding dogs and always have been. Any Muslim that tells you Islam bans dog is making it up. There is no definitive answer.
There are even stories of dogs being in the Prophets Mosque. Not any mosque, but the one used by Muhammad himself. The stories describe how dogs (quite common in any ancient city) would travel through the mosque from time to time and even urinate on the outside (better than my dang dog…always peeing on the carpet… )
Further, Muslims are specfically allowed to eat animals killed by hunting dogs. Dogs hunt with their mouths. If dogs were so impure, Muslims would not be allowed to eat what has touched their mouth.
Dogs are also said to be able to see demons. Why would God bless such a creature with this ability and then ban it from our homes?
It doesn’t make any sense.
Essentially it comes down to culture. In eastern cities dogs are viewed as pests. In the Western world, dogs are neutered and generally not allowed to wander as strays. Go to an eastern city and you will see a dramatically different picture. Dogs are everywhere, thye eat garbage, are covered in ticks and fleas and rabieas is quite prevelant. Hence, eastern cultures have tended to view dogs in a very negative light (a lot like rats).
I’ve always found this cultural bias extremely annoying because I have owned dogs since I was young and have always been told it is against Islam. I looked into it and found it was simply not true. Dogs are mentioned several times in the Quran; never are they mentioned in a negative tone. Indeed, the 7 Sleeper story is own example of which they are spoken of in a positive light.
Bottom line: God doesn’t mess around. If he didn’t want us to be around dogs, he would have said so in the Quran. It makes no sense that he would discuss dogs in the Quran and provide no instruction.
Anyway, I apologize for reopening this thread but reading some of the ignorant stuff written on here just irritates the heck out of me.