Cats and dogs of Morocco

Cats and dogs of Morocco, things to know

When I do travel photography in a particular place, I find it intriguing to document the lives of all its inhabitants, not just the people. As in several countries (especially in the Middle East), Morocco has a fairly large population of stray dogs and cats that roam the streets in search of food and comfort among its population. Having written an article on What to Photograph in Morocco before, I wanted to add photographs of our feline friends to the series. I found it interesting that despite the poverty and poor living conditions in the country, many Moroccans went out of their way to provide food and shelter for stray dogs and cats.

In Morocco, cats and dogs may be seen almost anywhere: on the street, in shops, in monuments, observing visitors, alone or in groups, more friendly or more aggressive. And I’m not talking about the unmistakable salespeople, who teach everyone who visits Morocco, if they haven’t already, how to politely but firmly say “no.”

I’m referring to cats, which are found in vast numbers in the adjacent nation and for whom Moroccans have a particular fondness. As a result, this piece will focus on them and why, contrary to popular belief in most countries, cats are significantly more popular as companion animals than dogs.

Religious origin:

In a culture like the Moroccan one, in which religion is a fundamental part, it is advisable to look for an Islamic basis for any deep-rooted custom. For this, it is necessary to know that Moroccans have two main religious sources to turn to firstly the Koran and secondly the Sunna, a set of precepts based on the sayings and deeds of the prophet related by his disciples (known as hadith).

In this sense, the Koran does not speak at any time of cats and only three times of the dog, focusing primarily on its abilities as a hunter and guardian. There is a clearer distinction in the hadiths, pointing out among others that while if a dog has licked a bowl it must be washed thoroughly, this is not necessary in the case of cats.

Personally, I believe there is a sanitary problem at hand: Islam, like many other faiths, emphasizes actions that are based on respect for others and for oneself, while also attempting to protect the health of the community that adheres to it. Consider the issue of ablutions: in addition to its symbolic and ceremonial significance, given historical health concerns, they were most likely meant to signal specific regulations so that mosques would not become a source of infection.

I like to imagine that sanitary conduct is linked to a positive religious attitude among Muslims and that the cat is favored because it is seen to be cleaner. Obviously, there are a variety of interpretations, ranging from the person who believes that one should merely use common sense while making contact with a dog to the person who believes that having a dog nearby is a bad idea.

I don’t want to close this part without emphasizing that, despite many interpretations, Moroccans do not abuse dogs, as is sometimes assumed. So much so that the Koran regularly mentions the responsibility to respect all creatures and even considers their abuse to be a serious sin.

But is it true that cats tend to be cleaner than dogs?

To conclude, contrary to the picture at the beginning of this paragraph and to my partner’s embarrassment, every time I kiss my dog, he looks on in horror: yes. While cats spend many hours a day washing, removing parasites and dead hair, dogs, being a subspecies of wolves, prefer to wallow in the mud to mask their scent from their prey.

Yes, even if you don’t believe it, the pet you have at home and call by an adorable moniker has the instincts of a great hunter.

Current status:

To credit the cause for the admission to a single religious foundation would be simple, and it is more likely that a variety of tales and traditions play a vital role, with it being impossible to determine what percentage obeys each one.

To offer two instances from popular culture, it has long been assumed that the prophet had a liking for animals, particularly cats. According to oral tradition, he once got up to cut a portion of his robe because he didn’t want to wake up his pet cat as she lay on him.

When it comes to dogs, the tales are a bit more varied. One that stands out to me is the one that says that if a dog wanders across the desert like a scavenger, it may find and retrieve the bodies buried there. Surprisingly, it has some historical precedent, since it is known that in the past, Berbers would bury their dead in shallow graves, later altering them to deeper ones when they found they had been excavated by wild animals.

However, I believe that one of the key cultural factors that contribute to a Moroccan’s preference for a cat as a pet is their strong feeling of the community since they are acutely aware of all the dimensions that make up society: their street, their neighborhood, their city, and so on.

In that sense, an animal with more freedom and the ability to travel and integrate into all corners of the city is likely to be preferred over one that is unduly reliant on the care of a family. So much so that cats are generally not assigned to a certain residence and are instead cared for and fed by the whole community.

Whatever the case may be, the truth is that they choose cats as everyday companions, and this is only one of their cultural differences. Of course, using our western perspective as a yardstick and concluding that their preferences for sharing their lives with an animal are less valid would be a complete blunder, because it is simply another difference, and as a difference, it is positive and adds to our interest in a country so different yet so close to us.

Finally, considering my passion for shooting cats, I’ll leave you with a comprehensive gallery of cats in Morocco. Fortunately, I am not the only one who enjoys this pastime, therefore I’ve included some photos from friends who have shared them with us on social media. Thank you very much, and I’ll see you in the future article!

Articles to read:

  • Best 10 recommended hotels in Fes
    You will find the top 10 hotels in Fes in this article. They are recommended based on experience by locals and tourists. Fes offers the atmosphere of an authentic Arabian walled city. The historic city of Fes El-Bali is home to the labyrinthine medina and the University of Al Quaraouiyine, the world’s oldest educational institution. … Read More
  • Travel to Morocco from USA and Uk, all you need to know
    What measures should travelers from US and UK take in order to visit Morocco? Travelers seeking to travel to Morocco from USA or Uk by any means must submit a completed health form, which may be accessed online before boarding. Additionally, it is provided aboard ships and at airports. They must also provide a valid … Read More
  • Hot Air Balloon in Marrakech, location, and prices
    A hot air balloon ride in Marrakech is surely one of the most memorable experiences during a stay in the famous red city. Admiring the city’s surroundings and the Atlas Mountains from the sky, and during the sunrise, is a magical moment! On the blog today, I share my feedback on this hot air balloon … Read More
  • Is Morocco open for tourism?
    After two months of closure, Morocco had to open its borders for tourism on February 7, 2022. For the occasion, the government has concocted a new protocol published on Tuesday, February 1. For the time being, people entering Morocco by plane must present a valid vaccination pass (the European vaccination pass is recognized in Morocco) … Read More
  • Moroccan flag meaning, colors, and history
    During the twentieth century, while Morocco was under the dominion of France and Spain, native flag traditions were curtailed and even banned entirely. On November 17, 1915, the French made a change to the basic red flag that had been flown by Moroccan ships throughout the war with France. The ancient pentagram is known as … Read More
  • Tetouan in Morocco, things to do and see
    Tetouan, often written Tetuán, is a Moroccan city located in north-central Morocco. There are 7 miles (11 kilometers) between it and the Mediterranean Sea, which is along the Martil River (Wadi Martil). The origin of the word comes from the Berber term “Titawin” which stands for eyes.The settlement is built on a rocky plateau that … Read More
  • How many days do you need to see Morocco?
    Many people ask the question; How many days do you need to see Morocco? the answer is simple, to fully discover Morocco, you will need more than a month. However, if you only want to visit the highlights, it can take around 7 to 10 days. It is always preferable to have more time. However, … Read More
  • Easter in Morocco, the perfect itinerary!
    Every year, Easter is a religious occasion that is eagerly awaited. Everyone starts planning how they are going to spend this delightful and almost magical time. Usually, someone is at home with his family, another one is with his friends, and another one goes out to live a different experience: an adventure trip! We would … Read More
  • Museums in Morocco, Top 10 best ones
    Are you planning on visiting Morocco soon and discovering its remarkable museums? You have come to the right path! Contact us to customize your own itinerary now! Morocco is a wonderful place to visit if you like culture. There’s always something to spark your curiosity in Marrakech, Fes, Meknes, and Chefchaouen. They offer distinct customs, … Read More
  • Cats and dogs of Morocco
    Cats and dogs of Morocco, things to know When I do travel photography in a particular place, I find it intriguing to document the lives of all its inhabitants, not just the people. As in several countries (especially in the Middle East), Morocco has a fairly large population of stray dogs and cats that roam … Read More
What kind of cats are in Morocco?

Cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus), caracals (Caracal caracal), sand cats (Felis margarita), and wildcats (Felis margarita) are among them (Felis silvestris).

Do Moroccans have dogs?

However, dogs are not often kept as household pets in Morocco. We noticed a few stray dogs and hundreds of stray cats wandering the streets… Moroccans regard dogs to be wild creatures, not household pets, as we discovered.

Are cats sacred in Morocco?

Cats have long been an integral part of Moroccan culture and daily life, coexisting peacefully alongside Moroccans. Despite the fact that the bulk of the cats are stray, neighbors often leave out bowls of water and food leftovers as a sign of good faith… Street cat in Morocco’s holy town of Moulay Idriss.

Do Moroccans like cats?

In contrast to most of the rest of the world, cats are the most popular pets in Morocco, and they have a stronghold over popular culture. The reason for this is due to Islamic teachings, which have resulted in a long-standing reverence of cats that has spread across the Muslim world.

Do Moroccans like dogs?

Cats, which may be found in vast numbers across the nation and for whom Moroccans have a particular fondness. Contrary to popular belief, it is frequently favored as a companion animal above the dog in most nations. Dogs are considered dirty in Muslim culture, but cats are revered.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>