Islam allows its believers to keep certain animals as pets in their homes. There are numerous hadiths quoted by Islamic scholars on the rights of pets and other animals. Taking good care of them, providing them shelter, food and honor are the basic rights of a pet and if one can’t do so, they are allowed to set them free.
It has been seen that the followers of Islam seem confused about keeping a dog or a cat as their pet. Usually, both the animals are considered as unclean and unholy but the Islamic traditions are opposite to these perceptions.
Here Is What Islam Say About Keeping A Cat Or A Dog As A Pet
According to various hadiths, keeping a cat at home is allowed but for a dog, there are some restrictions mention by Holy Prophet (PBUH).
Keep A Dog For Three Purposes Only While In Case Of A Cat, It Isn’t Necessary
Narrated Abu Hurairah: That the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: “Whoever acquires a dog – with the exception of a dog to guard livestock, a hunting dog, or a farm dog – each day a Qirat is deducted from his reward.” – Jami at-Tirmidhi Book 18, Hadith 32
One of the companions of Holy Prophet (PBUH) and famous hadith transmitter Abu Hurairah was named after his love for cats.
Narrated ‘Abdullah bin Rafi’: “I said to Abu Hurairah: ‘Why were you given the Kunyah Abu Hurairah?’ He said: ‘Do you not fear me?'” He said: “Indeed, I am in awe of you.’ He said: ‘I used to tend the sheep of my people, and I had a small kitten; so I used to place it in a tree at night, and during the day I would take it and play with it. So they named me Abu Hurairah.'” – Jami at-Tirmidhi Book 46, Hadith 3840
Dogs Are Impure While Cats Are Not!
Narrated Aisha, Ummul Mu’minin: Dawud ibn Salih ibn Dinar at-Tammar quoted his mother as saying that her mistress sent her with some pudding (harisah) to Aisha who was offering prayer. She made a sign to me to place it down. A cat came and ate some of it, but when Aisha finished her prayer, she ate from the place where the cat had eaten. She stated: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: It is not unclean: it is one of those who goes round among you. She added: I saw the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) performing ablution from the water left over by the cat. – Sunan Abi Dawud, Book 1, Hadith 76
It was narrated from ‘Abdullah bin Mughaffal that: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: ‘If a dog licks a vessel, wash it seven times and rub it with dust the eight times.” – Sunan Ibn Majah Book 1, Hadith 365
Treatment With Pets
Narrated Abdullah bin Umar: Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) said, “A woman was put in Hell because of a cat which she had kept locked till it died of hunger.” Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) further said, (Allah knows better) Allah said (to the woman), ‘You neither fed it nor watered when you locked it up, nor did you set it free to eat the insects of the earth.” – Sahih al-Bukhari Book 42, Hadith 13
It was narrated that Az-Zuhri said: “Ibn As-Sabbaq said: “Maimunah told me that Jibril (PBUH) said to the Messenger of Allah ‘We (Angles) do not enter a house in which there is a dog or a picture” – Sunan an-Nasa’I, Book 42, Hadith 14
And verily Allah knows the best!