Looks like neither Fido nor Felix will be getting much work or attention in Saudi Arabia. The country's religious police have issued a decree banning the sale of pets. Why? Pets are a sign of Western influence.
The area covered by the decree includes the port city of Jiddah on the Red Sea and the holy city of Mecca. A memo from Jiddah's Municipal Affairs Ministry explains that banning the sale of cats and dogs was necessary because young people were "buying them and parading them in public." A letter to a Medina newspaper further elucidated:
One bad habit spreading among our youths is the acquisition of dogs and showing them off in the streets and malls. There's no doubt that such a matter makes one shudder.... What's the point of dragging a dog behind you? This is blind emulation of the infidels.
Muhammad is said to have loved cats. But no matter, cats are not devout enough by today's religious standards. And dogs have always been considered unclean. So now both are banished to the dustbin of the infidel reject. But at least the apes and pigs will be happy. They could use the company.
Associated Press. "Saudi Arabia: Sale of Pet Cats and Dogs Banned." September 8, 2006.
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