Shaykh Jamir Meah advises on how we should treat wild animals such as lions and tigers.
We know that our prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) loved cats, and thus we as Muslims are to treat cats with kindness and respect. Does this apply to larger cats like lions and tigers? To what extent?
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) showed mercy to all of God’s creation and encouraged others to follow example. This extended to animals, plants and trees, and the earth in general. As such, it is unlawful to abuse, hurt, or mistreat, animals, plants, other organisms, or earthly resources without a valid excuse sanctioned by the shariah.
An example of the Prophet’s concern for animals is when he (peace and blessings be upon him) saw a camel which was burdened with a huge load, and he said, ‘Fear Allah when you deal with these beasts of burden.’ [Abu Dawud]
Cats were not particularly singled out, rather they are treated with the same compassion and respect as other created beings with souls, though the companion Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) did have a personal fondness of cats.
Checked and approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.