It is well known that dogs, along with pigs, are considered unclean in Islam. Strictly speaking, the theology doesn't ban their ownership, or petting; the Sunna prescribes that dogs are "pollutants", contact with them rendering believers ritually unclean. This means that ritual cleansing is required before one is able to perform prayers. Despite this, dogs have been kept by Muslims for centuries...
However, having domesticated animals free to roam inside a house, contact with which would require ritual cleansing, would be quite tricky from a practical point of view for Muslims who are required to pray five times a day – even though there is no actual legal prohibition of dog ownership...
Even though a Saudi-style morality police has no place in a much more modernised, sophisticated and complex country such as Iran, nevertheless, official and semi-official state agents conduct waves of enforcement against manifestations of un-Islamic social conduct.
The state prohibition of anything in Iran is an open invitation for its widespread social promotion. Blond hair and garish makeup, nose jobs (of which Iran is the world capital) and extravagantly sculpted and gelled hairstyles for boys are all forms of sedition – political statements with a small "p". The state's legitimacy is thus questioned and openly ridiculed, at least by a certain section of the population....
An underground industry of dog beauty parlours thrives, mostly run out of private homes, as do a plethora of canine protection and welfare charities. A legal and substantial kennel industry has developed into what is fancily called "dog spas" where the middle class deposit their dogs when on holiday or, in the case of some of my conflicted relatives, when a devout auntie comes to stay.
The industry booms further every time a firebrand preacher calls for their banning or admonishes dog owners from such platforms like the much loathed national radio and TV. Its been a long time coming, but Iranian dogs are having their day.Read the whole article here.
When my dad asks "why do we keep that dog around?," I can tell him that we're doing our part to fight Sharia law.
The Family Dog
Murphy: Defender of the West