بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
“If I shot an animal with the intention of eating it, but it died before slaughter, what should I do?”
الجواب ومن الله الصدق والصواب:
“There is something which you have omitted from your question, and that is what you will be using to hunt this animal. Is it a bow and arrow, a rifle, a shotgun, a crossbow? This affects the ruling. The ruling changes depending on the instrument being used for hunting. Because this has not been mentioned in the question, we will split the answer up into two:
1. Hunting with a bow and arrow / crossbow
2. Hunting with a rifle or shotgun
1. Hunting with a bow and arrow / crossbow
If you are hunting using a bow and arrow or a crossbow, then the Fatwaa
is as follows:
If you recited the Tasmiyah
at the time of firing, and had the intention of catching up with the animal and slaughtering it before it died, but it died before you got there, then it is permissible to eat. However, if you catch up with the animal before it dies, then you must slaughter it.
عن عدي بن حاتم قال قال لي رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم إذا أرسلت كلبك فاذكر اسم الله فإن أمسك عليك فأدركته حيا فاذبحه وإن أدركته قد قتل ولم يأكل منه فكله وإن وجدت مع كلبك كلبا غيره وقد قتل فلا تأكل فإنك لا تدري أيهما قتله وإن رميت سهمك فاذكر اسم الله فإن غاب عنك يوما فلم تجد فيه إلا أثر سهمك فكل إن شئت وإن وجدته غريقا في الماء فلا تأكل
Hadhrat `Adi ibn Haatim رضي الله عنه
narrates: Rasoolullaah صلى الله عليه وسلم
said to me: When you send out your (hunting) dog, then mention the Name of Allaah. If you catch up to the animal while it is alive, then slaughter it, and if you catch up to it and it had already died, then, if (the dog) had not eaten from it, then eat it. However, if you find another dog along with your dog, and the animal is dead, then do not eat from it, because you do not know which of them had killed the animal. When you shoot your arrow, mention the Name of Allaah. But if it (the animal that has been shot) goes out of your sight for a day, and (when you find it) you do not find in it except the traces of your arrow, then eat if you wish. However, if you find it drowned in water, then do not eat (from it).” [Narrated in Saheeh Muslim.
When it comes to hunting, there are some Shuroot
(conditions) to be followed in order for the animal to be Halaal:
1. Recite the Tasmiyah
at the time of firing
2. Shoot with the purpose of wounding, not killing. The purpose is to slow the animal down enough to catch up with it and slaughter it. If you shoot with the purpose of killing, then the animal is Haraam.
3. If you find the animal alive, then in order for it to be Halaal, you must slaughter it. If you find it alive, but you do not slaughter it, and it dies, then it is Haraam.
4. If the animal dies before you slaughter it, then the death must be as a result of the wound, not as a result of the impact of the blow.
To summarise: It is permissible to hunt with a crossbow or bow and arrow. Recite the Tasmiyah
at the time of firing. Immediately after shooting the animal, chase after it to slaughter it; it is not permissible to delay. If you delay in looking for it, it becomes Haraam. Once you find it, if it is alive, you must slaughter it. If you find it and it is already dead, then it is nevertheless permissible to eat from it.
Imaam al-Haskafi رحمة الله عليه
writes in ad-Durr al-Mukhtaar
( (وإذا أدرك) المرسل أو الرامي ( الصيد حيا ) بحياة فوق ما في المذبوح ( ذكاه ) وجوبا (وشرط لحله بالرمي التسمية
“If the person who sent out the hunting dog or the one who fired the arrow finds the animal whilst it is still alive, then it is Waajib
(obligatory) to slaughter it. The Shart
(condition) for an animal being Halaal (in such a scenario) is that the Tasmiyah
was recited at the time of firing (the arrow).”
He goes on to say:
و) شرط (أن لا يقعد عن طلبه لو غاب) الصيد (متحملا بسهمه) فما دام في طلبه يحل وأن قعد عن طلبه ثم أصابه ميتا
لا لاحتمال موته بسبب آخر
(condition) for the permissibility of the animal is that he (the hunter) does not sit back from looking for it if it leaves his sight (after being shot), carrying his arrow. As long as he continues looking for it and then finds it, it is Halaal. However, if he sits back from looking for it, and then later on finds it dead, then it is not (Halaal), because there is the possibility of it having died from some other reason (besides the wound).”
Imaam ibn `Aabideen ash-Shaami رحمة الله عليه
writes in Radd al-Muhtaar
, explaining this issue further:
قال الشامي : ... وإذا توارى الكلب والصيد عن المرسل أو رمى إلى صيد فوجده بعد ذلك ميتا وفيه سهمه ليس فيه جرح آخر حل أكله إذا لم يترك الطلب لأنه لا يستطاع الامتناع عن التواري عن البصر فيكون عفوا اهـ
(رد المحتار 6/ 469)
“If the (hunting) dog or the game leaves the sight of the hunter (the one who sent out the hunting dog or the one who fired the arrow), and then he (the hunter) finds (the game) dead after that, and in it is the arrow and there is no wound besides that, it is permissible to eat it provided he had not stopped looking for it from the time that he had shot it. This is because it is not possible to prevent (the game) from leaving his sight (generally), so it is pardoned.” [Radd al-Muhtaar
2. Hunting with a rifle or shotgun
The difference between hunting with a crossbow/bow and arrow and hunting with a rifle or shotgun is that, generally, an arrow will only pierce the animal but will not kill it. However, in the case of powerful firearms such as shotguns, when you shoot the animal, it can die immediately just from the impact, and in such a case the animal is Haraam. As we have mentioned earlier, one of the Shuroot
(conditions) for the permissibility of hunting is that you shoot with the purpose of wounding, not killing. Your intention is to slow it down so that you can catch up with it and slaughter it. In the case of shooting with a shotgun, using a slug, for example, you could kill the animal on the spot. Some animals are weaker than others. If you try to hunt birds, for example, and you use a shotgun with the slug as ammunition, you will likely kill them on the spot. If you are hunting deer, on the other hand, then there is a chance that it can die immediately and there is a chance that it can live long enough for you to catch up with it and slaughter it. Taking this into consideration, it is always better to rather hunt with a bow and arrow or a crossbow, to avoid this risk. If you shoot an animal with a gun and it dies instantly, then it is Haraam, because in such a case it is dying from the impact of the shot and not from the wound.
Imaam ibn `Aabideen رحمة الله عليه
writes in Radd al-Muhtaar:
قال قاضيخان لا يحل صيد البندقة والحجر والمعراض والعصا وما أشبه ذلك وإن جرح لأنه لا يخرق إلا أن يكون شيء من ذلك قد حدده
“Qaadheekhaan said: It is not permissible to hunt using a Bandaqah (kind of round stone), a stone, a Mi`raadh (arrow without a sharp point in the front), a staff, and the likes of that, even if they injure (the animal). This is because they do not tear, unless there is something from that which has a sharp edge.” [Radd al-Muhtaar, 6/471]
In summary: It is only permissible to hunt with a rifle, shotgun or the like if after shooting the animal, you slaughter it while it is still alive. If the animal dies before you can slaughter it, in the case of having hunted with a rifle, shotgun or the like, then the animal will be said to have died from the impact of the bullet (because bullets are not sharp and do not cut like arrows do, so they fall under the category of stones, the Mi`raadh, etc.) and not from the wound, and thus the animal is Haraam.
والله تعالى أعلم وعلمه أتم وأحكم
- Muhammad Huzaifah ibn Adam aal-Ebrahim
[30th of Rabee`-ul-Awwal, 1438 - 30th of December, 2016.]