Protecting one’s house against vermin should be done first of all by taking appropriate measures, such as using powders that kill them or repel them, and closing some windows firmly, and keeping away everything that could attract them to the house, and other things that people do to protect their homes.
Islam is not based on miracles and extraordinary feats, rather it enjoins us to take appropriate measures and work hard in doing so, whilst also putting our trust in Allaah. The Muslim should not be fatalistic and fail to take the measures that Allaah has prescribed for this universe, and every time he is faced with a situation or worried about something, look for du’aa’s or dhikrs that he thinks will meet his needs, without taking the prescribed measures that will lead him to his goal.
With regard to protecting one’s home against vermin, there are some du’aa’s that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) has taught us, such as the following:
1 – It was narrated that Khawlah bint Hakeem al-Sulamiyyah said: I heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say: “Whoever stops at a place and says: A’oodhu bi kalimaat Allaah al-taammah min sharri ma khalaq (I seek refuge in the perfect words of Allaah from the evil of that which He has created), nothing will harm him until he moves on from that place.”
Narrated by Muslim (2708).
Al-Nawawi said in Sharh Muslim (17/31):
It was said: What it means is words in which there is no shortcoming or fault, or it was said: beneficial and healing (words), and it was said that what is meant by words here is the Qur’aan. End quote.
It was narrated from Abu Hurayrah that he said: A man came to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and said: O Messenger of Allaah, I was stung by a scorpion last night. He said: “If you had said, when evening came, A’oodhu bi kalimaat Allaah al-taammah min sharri ma khalaq (I seek refuge in the perfect words of Allaah from the evil of that which He has created), it would not have harmed you.”
Narrated by Muslim (2709).
Al-Manaawi said in Fayd al-Qadeer (1/446):
If one says that with strong certainty and full submission to what the Lawgiver said, “nothing will harm him” of vermin and other creatures, “until he moves on from that place”.
Al-Qurtubi said: A saheeh report and true words. From the time I heard it I have acted upon it, and nothing harmed me. I forgot to say it one night and a scorpion stung me. End quote.
2 – It was narrated that Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him) said:
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to seek protection for al-Hasan and al-Husayn and say: “Your father (i.e., Ibraaheem) used to seek protection by means of them (these words) for Ismaa’eel and Ishaaq: A’oodhu bi kalimaat-Allaah il-taammah min kulli shaytaanin wa haammah wa min kulli ‘aynin laammah (I seek refuge in the perfect words of Allaah from every devil and poisonous reptile, and from every envious evil eye).”
Narrated by al-Bukhaari (3371).
Ibn Hajar said in Fath al-Baari (6/410).
Haammaah (sing. Hawaam) refers to poisonous creatures. End quote.
Al-Nawawi said in Sharh Muslim (14/170):
Many or most said that it is permissible to recite saheeh ruqyahs when one fears attack from obnoxious or poisonous animals. The evidence for that appears in several ahaadeeth, including the hadeeth of ‘Aa’ishah in Saheeh al-Bukhaari: When the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) went to bed, he would spit onto his hand and recite Qul Huwa Allaahu Ahad and al-Mi’wadhatayn, then he would wipe his face and whatever he would reach of his body with it. And Allaah knows best. End quote.
3 – It was narrated that ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Umar said: When the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was travelling and night came, he would say: “O earth, my Lord and your Lord is Allaah. I seek refuge with Allaah from your evil and the evil of that which is in you, and the evil of that which has been created in you, and from the evil of that which walks upon you. I seek refuge with Allaah from lions and black ones, from snakes and scorpions, from the inhabitants of the land, and from fathers and sons.”
Narrated from Abu Dawood (2306), but he did not comment on its soundness. Also narrated by al-Nasaa’i in al-Sunan al-Kubra (6/144) with two isnaads, from Safwaan ibn ‘Amr and from Shurayh ibn ‘Ubayd from al-Zubayr ibn al-Waleed from Ibn ‘Umar.
I say: This isnaad may be regarded as hasan because its men are thiqaat (trustworthy) apart from al-Zubayr ibn al-Waleed, who is one of the Taabi’een but it was not narrated that he is trustworthy, except that Ibn Hibbaan mentioned him in al-Thiqaat (4/261). Al-Bukhaari said nothing about him in al-Tareekh al-Kabeer (3/410), but al-Dhahabi said in al-Kaashif (1/402): He is trustworthy.
It was classed as saheeh by al-Haakim in al-Mustadrak (1/615) and by Ibn Khuzaymah (4/152). It was classed as hasan by al-Haafiz Ibn Hajar as it says in al-Futoohaat al-Rabaaniyyah (5/164). But al-Albaani classed it as weak in al-Silsilah al-Da’eefah (4837).
It says in ‘Awn al-Ma’bood (7/189): al-aswad (translated above as “black ones”) means large snakes. “From the inhabitants of the land” – it was said that this refers to humans, as they usually live in the land, or it was said that it means jinn. “From fathers and sons” – al-Khattaabi said: it may be that what is meant by “father” is Iblees and what is meant by “sons” is the devils. End quote.
But we should point out that the du’aa’s that we have quoted here are for protection against the evil of these vermin and animals; they will not necessarily repel these vermin – they may be present around a person or in his house, but they will not harm him.
We ask Allaah the Almighty to protect us and you from all evils.
And Allaah knows best.