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  Reliance of the Traveller (Shafi?i school) details the requirements for killing animals when hunting so that they may be used as food. A game animal that is killed by an arrow or a trained hunting animal is lawful to eat as long as the hunter is not blind. If the animal was killed by an arrow, it may be eaten only if it was the cutting edge of the arrow, and not its weight, that caused the animal to die. If the weight of the trained hunting animal kills the game, the meat from the game is still lawful to eat.

Abu Hanifa, Malik and al-Shafi?i agree that an animal hunted with a blunt weapon, such as a stone or blunt arrow, can be lawfully eaten only if its body was torn by the weapon. While hunting with a dog is permitted, there is disagreement among scholars about hunting with predatory animals other than dogs. Malik and his school say, for example, that it is permitted to use birds or other predatory animals if they are trained.

Game that can be caught alive must be slaughtered rather than hunted. A majority of scholars, including Abu Hanifa, Malik and al-Shafi?i, agree that if a game animal dies after being caught by a hunting animal but before the hunter can reach it, and then it is lawful to eat it. If game was wounded but is still alive and no vital organ is damaged, it must be ritually slaughtered to be eaten lawfully.  Malik says that it is lawful to eat an animal, which was partially eaten by the hunting animal, but Abu Hanifa and al-Shafi?i disagree, as does the Shafi?i School.

The disagreement among scholars concerning whether the name of Allah must be said when hunting falls along the same lines as the disagreement concerning ritual slaughter, as discussed on this page, above. Thus, for Abu Hanifa and Malik, meat from a hunted animal is lawful to eat only if Allah's name was recited by the hunter unless the hunter forgets to do so, while according to al-Shafi?i reciting the name of Allah by the hunter is but a recommendation based on a strong tradition.

It is unlawful to eat the meat of a hunted animal if something other than the hunter's weapon or animal (that is, something that is not a lawful instrument of hunting or ritual slaughter) also wounded the prey and thus may have partially been the cause of its death. Abu Hanifa and al-Shafi?i say that game can be lawfully eaten if it was killed by a hunter's dog other than the one sent to kill that particular animal, but Malik disagrees.

There is also disagreement concerning the eating of meat from a hunted animal that disappeared from sight. Malik says that it is lawful to eat from such an animal if the hunter's arrow is in it or marks of hunter's dog are on it and it has not disappeared overnight. According to Abu Hanifa, it can be eaten if the trained dog finds the dead hunted animal after an uninterrupted search, but not if search is interrupted. Al-Shafi?i says that it cannot be eaten if its track was not visible. According to Reliance of the Traveller, the Shafi?i School holds that it is unlawful to eat game if it disappeared between the times it was wounded and when it was found dead.

If a hunted animal has fallen from a peak, Abu Hanifa and Malik say that it is lawful to eat if the arrow is in a vital organ and is known to have caused the death of the animal. The Shafi?i School says that it is unlawful.

If the hunted animal has fallen into water, Malik says that it is lawful to eat if the arrow is in a vital organ and is known to have caused the death of the animal. Abu Hanifa and the Shafi?i School say that it is not lawful to eat even if the arrow is in a vital organ.

A Summary from: Reliance of the Traveller: A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law by Ahmad ibn Naqib al-Misri, translated by Nuh Ha Mim Keller, published by Amana Publications, Beltsville, Maryland, USA.


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