Would Pests and Animals be Held Accountable in Hereafter?

Answered by Mawlana Ilyas Patel


I’m a non-Muslim, and I can tell you I like so many things about Islam, to the point of avoiding interest and not wasting things I took from Islam. One of the things I don’t like is how the Hadith says Satan possesses pests. How is this possible, but a lion killing a human is pure instinct? Would those pests be held accountable like jinns and humans if an afterlife exists? How can God let all this happen?


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

It is pleasing to hear you are finding things in Islam to be reasoned. However, our limited mind, with our ego, desires, shaytan, and surrounding, will not make everything easy to understand. One has to submit to the Divine and its wisdom through studies, or Allah Most High will manifest it in the Hereafter.

Accountability for All Creatures: Humans beings, Jinn beings, and Animals

There will be accountability for actions for all creatures with a soul; human beings, jinn beings, and animals. Accountability for belief is only for human beings and jinn beings. Accountability for animals for their actions will be to show Allah’s fairness and justice. Eternity in Paradise or Hellfire is for human beings and jinn beings.

Accountability for Actions of Animals Over Other Animals

Animals will get resurrected on Judgment Day. Allah says, “And when the wild beasts are herded together.” [Quran, 81:5]

It is also mentioned in the Quran, “All living beings roaming the earth and winged birds soaring in the sky are communities like yourselves. We have left nothing out of the Record. Then to their Lord they will be gathered all together.” [Quran, 6:38]

Abu Hurayra (Allah be pleased with him) reported under the commentary of ‘that they are communities like you.’ Allah Most High judges between His creation, jinn, men, and animals. Allah will let the hornless animal settle its score with the horned animal, until when there is no account to be settled, Allah will say to them: “Be dust.” This is when the disbeliever will say: “Would that I were dust!” [Hakim, Mustadrak]

Hornless Sheep will get a Claim from the Horned Sheep

The claimants would get their claims on the Day of Judgement, so much so that the hornless sheep would get its claim from the horned sheep.

Abu Hurayra (Allah be pleased with him) reported the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, The rights of everyone will be restored on the Day of Resurrection until justice is fulfilled, even between the hornless sheep and the horned sheep. [Muslim; Tabari, Tafsir al-Tabari; Alusi, Ruh al-Ma’ani; Rada al-Haq, Fatawa Darul Ulum Zakariyya]

The summary is from the above, and it is evident that animals and birds will be:

  • resurrected
  • be held accountable
  • go through settlement of actions, and
  • be turned to dust

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I pray this helps with your question.

[Mawlana] Ilyas Patel
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Mawlana Ilyas Patel is a traditionally-trained scholar who has studied within UK, India, Pakistan, Syria, Jordan and Turkey.

He started his early education in UK. He went onto complete hifz of Qur’an in India, then enrolled into an Islamic seminary in UK where he studied the secular and Alimiyyah sciences. He then travelled to Karachi, Pakistan.

He has been an Imam in Rep of Ireland for a number of years. He has taught hifz of the Qur’an, Tajwid, Fiqh and many other Islamic sciences to both children and adults onsite and online extensively in UK and Ireland. He was teaching at a local Islamic seminary for 12 years in the UK where he was a librarian and a teacher of Islamic sciences.

He currently resides in UK with his wife. His personal interest is love of books and gardening.