Sayyidina Anas and Abdullah ibn Masud related to us, that the Prophet said:
“All the creatures are the Ayaal (family) of Allah. The more beloved of Allah, among His creatures, therefore, is the man who is good to His family, i.e., creatures.” [Baihaqi]
Commentary: Those who are dependent on a person of the necessities of life, like food and clothing, are called his Ayaal. In this way, all the created beings are the Ayaal of Allah. He is their Cherisher and Sustainer. The above Tradition, consequently, tells that whosoever shows kindness to the creatures of Allah will be deserving of His love.
[Maulana Muhammad Manzoor Nomani. Ma’ariful Hadith, Volume 3, Pg. 433. “Book of Monetary and Mutual Dealings,” Darul-Ishaat, Karachi, 2002.]
It is related by Abu Hurairah that the Messenger of Allah said:
“… A companion, thereupon, enquired: “O Messenger of Allah! Is there a reward even on giving food and drink to the animals?” “Of course,” the Prophet replied. “There is a reward on giving food and drink to every living creature.” (Bukhari and Muslim)
“Spreading Hadith One Post Per Day” series.
Hadith # 6.