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I know one is allowed to own a dog, and mistama the dog moves around the house wherever it wants, plops down wherever etc.

Was wondering if one is allowed to learn Torah/ daven/ make brachos in the presence of a dog?

  • I think that what you may have read / heard may be specific to not davening Amidah before a dog, and it may be b/c of the smell. – DanF Feb 8 at 16:30
  • Why do you assume one cannot? – Dude Feb 8 at 20:15
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    It should be ok, unless the dog(and definitely the dog, not just someone blaming him) creates an offensive, unbearable smell in the area. – Gary Feb 9 at 16:09
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When discussing the Halachos of not saying Brachos in front of different 'disgusting' things, the Seforim only mention that a pig has an assumed status of always being dirty with excrement. The implication of that is that most other animals do not have a 'default' status of bing being dirty with regards to Brachos and the like. Of course, if the animal is dirty/smelly/etc., then the 'default' cleanliness would not be applicable.

One such example brought down Lehalachah regardng the uncleanliness of a pig is the Chayei Adam, last sentence of 3:13 (translation my own):

ופי חזיר דינו כצואה עוברת אפילו עולה מן הנהר אין הרחצה מועיל לו ודינו כצואה עוברת

The mouth of a pig is always considered like feces passing before you, even when it just arrises from a river, since washing does not help it, and therefore it is always considered like feces passing before you.

  • See brachot 25a : א"ר פפא פי חזיר כצואה עוברת דמי פשיטא לא צריכא אע"ג דסליק מנהרא א"ר – kouty Feb 9 at 19:53
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For davening, Rav Yair Wassertal is of the opinion (here) that it is technically permitted, but inadvisable, as it may distract from having the proper concentration. He does however quote the Chelkas Ya'akov (OC 34) who says that a dog should not be brought into a Beit Haknesset.

I don't have time to read/summarize them now, but see here, here, here, and here, among other sources.

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