After discovering the latest omen of the world’s coming demise, the Clog encourages Berkeley students to put down their books and enjoy their short-lived time on Earth.

Ayatollah Nasser Makkarem Shirazi, an important religious leader, issued a fatwa in June against keeping dogs as pets, saying that the blind imitation of the West would result in evil outcomes. He issued a second fatwa which bans advertisements about pets or of anything relating to their sale. The second fatwa went on to become law in Iran.

According to Islamic tradition — cited by the fatwa — dogs are unclean animals. To the dismay of those in support of Islamic law, these “unclean” k-9’s have become increasingly popular in Iran – especially among the affluent. Though pet dogs are not illegal, they are sternly looked down upon and one may even get fined for walking his/her dog in the park.

On the other hand, the Abhu-Dhabi National newspaper suggests that the ban may be more of a political imposition rather than a religious one: the ruling conservative party wants to portray activists as insensible and frivolous.

Still, the well-to-do and passionate dog lovers are finding ways around the fatwas, some buying small dogs that are easy to hide in public and others avoiding the public altogether by going on night-walks or using backstreets.

There are exceptions in which it is believed appropriate to keep a dog: dogs used to keep guard, or to detect drugs and earthquake victims are considered acceptable.

Image Source: Hillary Kladke under Creative Commons
Earlier: Zebra Break!
IRAN: Pet-product advertising banned as dog owners come under fire [LA Times Blogs]

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