Is it allowed to have a cat in Islam?
Does the Islamic faith allow Muslims to own a pet cat? Yes, of course. I am not even going to look up the answer because I don’t have to. I don’t think anyone has to because one of the most discussed and known aspects of the Islamic faith is that the central person intrinsically linked to its popularity, the Prophet Mohammad, loved cats.
The information is all over the internet and in the books. Muslims follow the words and guidance of the Prophet. As he loved cats, he was supportive of their welfare. I don’t know if it could be said that he owned or ‘had’ a cat or cats because the concept of ownership is not a great one for domestic cats. Do we ever truly own a cat? We do legally but do we practically?
Note: there are some more articles on this topic at the base of the page.
Back in the day of the Prophet Mohammad most domestic cats would have been community cats. They’d share their time with various people. As the Prophet was so good with cats there’s no doubt that they would have spent more time with him that other people. They would have enjoyed his company. His well discussed favourite was Muezza (Muʿizza; Arabic: معزة).
He was very compassionate towards cats. Apparently, the name ‘Muezza’ is of Arabic origin. It is believed to mean ‘cherished’ in English. Yes, his cats were cherished by him. Although the relationship between domestic cats and people in those days was different to today’s. And in Saudi Arabia where the Prophet Mohammad lived the relationship with domestic cats is still different to that of the West.
I sense that they are not as keen on cats as Americans or the Brits, for instance. There are examples of cat cruelty in Saudi Arabia which surprises me bearing in mind the high-profile history of the domestic cat’s relationship with the Prophet.
I am waffling. The answer is that it is allowed to have a cat in Islam. And you should take care of your cat nicely and to a proper standard. Rich citizens of the Middle East sometimes like to have a cheetah as a pet cat. I realise that not many people do this but it happens and it is not a good optic.
If you see a Middle Eastern man with a pet cheetah it means that a cheetah cub was probably or possibly distressingly taken from their mother in the wild or in captivity. We should never do this in the interests of cat welfare. I am sure that the Prophet would have frowned on this self-indulgent trend.
A Muslim can have a cat but one of the conditions is that they are loving towards their cat and look after them well. That would please the Prophet.