Praise be to Allaah.
It is not permissible for a Muslim to keep a dog, unless he
needs this dog for hunting, guarding livestock or guarding crops.
Al-Bukhaari (2145) narrated that Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be
pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever keeps a dog, a qiraat from his good deeds
will be deducted every day, except a dog for farming or herding livestock.”
Muslim (2978) narrated from Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be
pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever keeps a dog that is not a dog for
hunting, herding livestock or farming, two qiraats will be deducted from his
reward each day.”
Muslim (2943) narrated from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Umar (may Allaah
be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings
of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever keeps a dog, except a dog for herding
livestock or a dog for hunting, a qiraat will be deducted from his good
deeds each day.” ‘Abd-Allaah said: Abu Hurayrah said: Or a dog for farming.
Ibn ‘Abd al-Barr said: This hadeeth shows that it is
permissible to keep a dog for hunting and herding livestock, and also for
Ibn Maajah (3640) narrated from ‘Ali ibn Abi Taalib (may
Allaah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) said: “The angels do not enter a house in which there is
a dog or an image.” Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Ibn Maajah.
These ahaadeeth indicate
that it is haraam to keep a dog, except for those which were exempted by the
Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).
The scholars differed as to how to reconcile between the
reports which speak of one qiraat being deducted and those which speak of
two qiraats being deducted.
It was said that two qiraats will be deducted if the dog is
more harmful and one qiraat will be deducted if it is less so.
And it was said that that at first the Prophet (peace
and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said that one qiraat would be deducted,
then the punishment was increased after that, so he said that two qiraats
would be deducted in order to put people off from keeping dogs even more.
The qiraat is an amount that is known to Allaah, may He be
exalted, and what is meant is that some of the reward for a person’s good
deeds will be deducted.
See Sharh Muslim by al-Nawawi, 10/342; Fath
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen said in Sharh Riyaadh al-Saaliheen,
With regard to keeping dogs, this is haraam and is in fact a
major sin, because the one who keeps a dog, except those for which an
exception has been made, will have two qiraats deducted from his reward
It is by the wisdom of Allaah that like calls to like and
evil calls to evil. It is said that the kaafirs, Jews, Christians and
communists in the east and the west all keep dogs, Allaah forbid. Each one
takes his dog with him and cleans it every day with soap and other cleansing
agents. But even if he were to clean it with the water of all the seas in
the world and all the soap in the world, it would never become pure! Because
its impurity is inherent, and inherent impurity cannot be cleansed except by
destroying it and erasing it altogether.
But this is by the wisdom of Allaah, and the wisdom of Allaah
is that like calls to like and evil calls to Shaytaan because this kufr of
theirs is by the inspiration of the Shaytaan and the command of the
Shaytaan, for the Shaytaan enjoins evil, immorality, kufr and misguidance.
So they are slaves to the Shaytaan and to their whims and desires, and they
are also evil and love vile things. We ask Allaah to guide us and them. End
Is it permissible to keep dogs to guard houses?
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him)
made only three exceptions to the prohibition on keeping dogs: hunting,
guarding livestock and guarding crops.
Some scholars are of the
view that it is not permissible to keep a dog for any reason other than
these three. Others are of the view that it is permissible to draw analogies
between these three and similar or more likely cases, such as guarding
houses, because if it is permissible to keep dogs to guard livestock and
crops, it is more appropriate that it should be permissible to keep dogs to
Al-Nawawi said in Sharh Muslim (10/340):
Is it permissible to keep a dog to guard houses, alleys and
the like? There are two points of view. The first is that it is not
permissible, because of the apparent meaning of the ahaadeeth, which clearly
state that keeping dogs is forbidden except for farming, hunting and
herding. The more correct view is that it is permissible, by analogy with
those three cases, knowing that the reason that is understood from the
ahaadeeth is necessity. End quote.
The view that was classed as saheeh by al-Nawawi (may Allaah
have mercy on him), that keeping a dog to guard the house is permissible,
was also classed as saheeh by Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy
on him) in Sharh Saheeh Muslim. He said:
The correct view is that
it is permissible to keep a dog to guard the house, because if it is
permissible to keep a dog in order to benefit from it, as in the case of
hunting, it is more appropriate that one be allowed to keep a dog in order
to ward off harm and protect oneself.