Qurbani Rules

Giving Qurbani (a sacrifice) is a sacred duty ordered by Allah (SWT). Every year during the holy month of Dhul Hijjah, Muslims all over the world slaughter an animal – a goat, sheep, cow or camel – to reflect the Prophet Ibrahim’s willingness to sacrifice his son Ismail, for the sake of God. This sacrifice is based on certain Qurbani rules and Qurbani requirements .

What are the Qurbani rules?

Who needs to give Qurbani? What do you say during Qurbani? When do we offer our sacrifice? Which animals are allowed for Qurbani? Are there any other things we need to take into consideration?

Worry not! We’ve put together everything you need to know about the Qurbani rules. Keep reading below to find out more.

Qurbani Animal Requirements

Qurbani rules require that animals which are eligible for sacrifice should meet minimum requirements, such as the age of the Qurbani animal and their condition, including:

  • Sheep/Goats: should be at least one year in age (this is equivalent to one person’s Qurbani)

  • Cows/Buffalo: should be at least two years in age (this is equivalent to seven people’s Qurbani)

  • Camels: should be of at least five years in age (enough for seven people’s Qurbani)

In addition, all Qurbani animals must be healthy and free of disease, including the following conditions:

  • They cannot be excessively thin or lean

  • They must be able to walk themselves to the site of the slaughter

  • They cannot be toothless, or missing over half their teeth

  • They must not be blind or one-eyed

  • They must not have a lame leg that is sufficiently weak that they are unable to walk on it

Who must perform Qurbani?

According to most Muslims, giving Qurbani is obligatory for every sane adult Muslim who has wealth in excess to their needs (i.e. who meet the nisab threshold).

Normally those who are eligible to pay Zakat are obliged to give Qurbani according to Qurbani rules.

The Hanafi school of thought states that it is obligatory for:

  • Every sane Muslim of mature age (who has reached puberty)
  • Non-travelling persons
  • Those who additionally own wealth which is beyond their needs, equal to (or more than) the current level of nisab (87.48 grams of gold or 612.35 grams of silver)


How to perform Qurbani?

For a slaughter of an animal to be counted as Qurbani, it is essential that the slaughter is carried out humanely following Qurbani rules. Below are some of the rules that should be followed:

  • A sharp knife must be used to carry out the Qurbani – dull knives may inflict unnecessary pain and suffering
  • Knives must not be sharpened in front of the sacrificial animal
  • No Qurbani animal can be slaughtered in front of another animal
  • When the sacrifice is being made, the words “Bismillahi Allahu Akbar” must be recited
  • The Qurbani animal can not to be skinned until the body is entirely cold


At what age is Qurbani Fardh?

The opinion on whether Qurbani is compulsory or not differs between the different schools of thought and their Qurbani rules.

However, for the benefit of those less fortunate, the sacred act of Qurbani should be considered a Fardh for anyone who is of a mature age (has reached the age of puberty), and possesses wealth above the nisab threshold.

What to say during Qurbani

According to Qurbani rules, it is required to say “Bismillahi Allahu Akbar” when slaughtering an animal for Qurbani.


When to stop cutting nails and hair Before Qurbani

For those who want to offer a sacrifice, Qurbani rules recommend that once the new moon of Dhul Hijjah appears (i.e. on the 1st of Dhul Hijjah), that they do not remove anything from their own hair, nails, or skin until they have offered the sacrifice. The last day recommended to cut hair and nails is before the new moon of Dhul Hijjah appears.

In the Hanbali madhab, it is considered haram to cut your hair or nails if you’re donating Qurbani. However, according to most scholars, refraining from cutting your hair and nails is a recommended act rather than an obligatory one. It is best to seek advice according to your school of thought.


Which animals are allowed for Qurbani?

Qurbani rules require that only particular animals are eligible for Qurbani. These Qurbani animals should meet minimum requirements, such as a particular age and their condition. Qurbani rules allow the following animals to be sacrificed for Qurbani:

  • Sheep
  • Goat
  • Cows
  • Buffalo
  • Camels


How many Qurbani per family?

According to the Hanafi school of thought, Qurbani rules state that anyone obligated to donate Qurbani in the household must donate a minimum of one Qurbani each. For example, one Qurbani is equivalent to one sheep/goat. A large Qurbani animal such as a cow/buffalo/camel is enough for seven people’s Qurbani.


What to do if you have  missed Qurbani

If you would like to make up for any Qurbani donations which you’ve missed in previous years, simply calculate the total number of years missed and donate the total number of shares this year.

For example, according to Qurbani rules, if donating Qurbani was compulsory for you in the last three years, which you’d missed, you can donate four Qurbani shares this year.

Donate Qurbani today

Give from what you love and donate Qurbani today! Your Qurbani donation ensures families all around the world can celebrate Eid!

Read our Blog 

What a Relief


Shop the Relief Collective


Fundraise with Poverty to Profit