Islamic views on animals

In my tutorial, while in Morocco, I was told to research into Islamic beliefs on animals to see where my taxidermy would stand. Whilst in Morocco we saw many overworked donkeys that were skinny and tethered in the sun, as well as sick cats on the streets and fitting goats on the floor of the Berber market. This all lead me to believe that Morocco had little care for animals and treated them as much lower life forms.
I decided to research into this just to make sure and what I found was pretty contradictory. I read that Allah created all animals and therefore loves them and that animals were created for the use of man but must be looked after well and killed in Allahs name. Muslims are told to avoid treating animals with cruelty, overworking and neglecting them.

Despite this talk of treating animals well, I was aware that there was one animal Islam don’t favour, the pig.

I have tried to stitch onto a pig before and it is something that didn’t go very well. The skin is far too thick and rubbery and when stuffed would turn an unfortunate colour.
I then decided to look into Islamic views on rats and stumbled across this.

This proves that rats are thought more lowly that pigs and are therefore a perfect candidate for my piece.
I want to combine a lowly pest, the rat with the beautiful floral designs that decorate Morocco and places of importance. I want to bring around animal awareness, that all animals are equals and none deserved to be killed. I feel that this piece would be very contemporary in Morocco and also quite offensive. I feel by creating this piece I could change points of view and create a more animal friendly Morocco.


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