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Iran government's proposal to ban pets invites outrage.

December 13, 2021 : The bill on “protection of public rights against dangerous and harmful animals,” was drafted on November 17, 2021. It attempts to prohibit breeding, adopting, selling, buying, transporting, and owning most common household pets such as dogs, cats, rabbits, mice etc. the bans shall extend to cover wild animals also such as snakes, lizards, crocodiles, mice, monkeys, donkeys, and turtles. 

This bill justifies itself in the name of cleaning the society. The bill argues that people who live with animals represent the “destructive social problems”. The bill bans the ownership of animals which are “unclean” in nature and goes against the gist of Islam. The legislatures argue that owning an animal could "gradually change the Iranian and Islamic way of life" by "replacing human and family relationships with feelings and emotional relationships towards animals".

The legislation had previously attempted to curtail this practise of pet ownership but prohibiting dog walks and transportation, but it was met with heavy resistance.

The bill contains provisions to heavily penalize the deifiers of this law and even the landlords are put under scrutiny to ensure that this ban is effectively enforced.

The bill has already been signed by 75 hardliner legislators. One-quarter of parliamentarians are thought to have signed the text for the proposed law that also claims that animals could ‘gradually change the Iranian and Islamic way of life’.

The bill has led to an outcry among animal lovers. The owners of pets and pet stores are vociferously raising their voice to stop this bill from being implemented.

-Nandini Varshney

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