Known worldwide as a conservative Islamic country, Iran's legal code operates under a strict Shi'a Islamic law. So it comes as no surprise that The Daily Mail reports that the Iranian government is now banning the public driving or walking of dogs, citing the Islamic belief that they are unclean animals.
In June 2010, Iranian Cleric Grand Ayatollah Naser Makarem Shirzi was quoted as saying “Friendship with dogs is a blind imitation of the West,” further explaining that “There are lots of people in the West who love their dogs more than their wives and children.”
Dog ownership has long been discouraged in Iran, though they are considered to be a status symbol in Iran's more westernized capitol, Tehran. Guard dogs, specially trained dogs and sheep dogs, however, are often kept and tolerated.
Thus far, dog owners are choosing to walk their pets at night to avoid detection, and many are choosing to buy smaller dogs that are quieter and less noticeable. Yet any pet dogs found being walked outside are at risk for "arrest", and their owner must pay a fine.
(Photo via Daily Mail)