5 year-old boy on the day of birth was presented the puppy. What to do?
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5 year-old boy on the day of birth was presented the puppy(dog). The child is very attached to this amusing creation. The parents of the boy in confusion - they are Muslims. What to do?

Respected Brother/Sister in Islam

Assalamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakaatuh 

It is discouraged in Islam to keep dogs as pets. In the Hadith, the Prophet of Allah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wassallam) said:

  لا تدخل الملائكة بيتا فيه كلب، ولا صورة تماثيل 

“The angels of mercy do not enter a home in which there is a dog, pictures of animate objects or statues”

(Sahih al-Bukhari, Hadith #: 3225, Narrated by Abu Talhah) 

Thus, keeping a dog inside the home deters the angels of mercy from entering the home.

However, it should be taken into consideration that the child is only five years old. The parents should be cautious not to offend the child or hurt his feelings. Whilst adhering to the laws of Shari'ah, his feelings should also be taken into consideration.

The appropriate thing to do in this situation is to try an introduce an alternative pet to the child. For example, a bird, cat, rabbit etc. If the child is pacified with this, well and good. If not, then the immediate remedy to this situation is to keep the dog outside the home with the intention of keeping it for security. The dog should not be allowed inside the house. The dog should be well fed and taken care of and an appropriate kennel should be erected for it. The child should be educated about the laws of cleanliness such as the saliva of the dog is impure and thus, he should not allow the dog to lick him. Gradually, the parents should discourage the child from keeping the dog.

And Allah Knows Best.

Wassalaam.                                                                                  

Mufti Suhail Tarmahomed                                                                                                         

Fatwa Dept.

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