Dogs in Islam
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It is a well-known stereotype that Muslims generally have a negative view of dogs. Dogs are held in low esteem in the Muslim countries and Islamic arguments are occasionally used to justify the neglect and abuse of them. Today Muslims are challenged by the modern animal rights discourse and frequently criticized for the treatment of dogs. Interestingly, however, throughout much of the history, the general situation of dogs, as well as animals in general, was much better in Muslim countries in comparison to Western world. This book searches for the historic circumstances and precedents that led to this negative view about dogs and presents a historic survey of basic texts concerning dogs in Islamic sources. Islamic heritage possesses many resources to extend moral consideration to animals, including dogs, and it is an unjustifiable partisan position to single out the negative view as uniquely authoritative and normative. The book challenges the well-accepted notion of the impurity and baseness of dogs and shows that there are ample sources and interpretations in classical Islamic sources which may justify different opinions.
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