`Aqīqah (Arabic: عقيقة), aqeeqa, or aqeeqah is the Islamic tradition of the sacrifice of an animal on the occasion of a child's birth. It is widely performed by Muslims and it is considered sunnah to slaughter a sheep for the baby and distribute the meat to the poor. Muslims also prepare a feast for family and friends in celebration for being blessed with a child. Aqiqah is a sunnat al mu'akkadah (confirmed sunnah). If the guardian of the child is capable of slaughtering a sheep for the child, they should do it. Muhammad said : “A baby is being pledged for his aqiqah, sacrifice is made for him on the seventh day, his head is shaved, and a name is given him". If one cannot slaughter on the seventh day, one may slaughter on the fourteenth day or on the twenty-first day.If one is not capable of doing so, then one may slaughter any time before the puberty of the child. The aqiqah is sunnah and mustahabb; it is not obligatory at all, so there is no sin on the one who does not do it, or the one who delays it and does not do it at the time that is mustahabb, although he misses out on the virtue and reward of that. (He may delay it) until he is able to do it, or he may omit it  It is a tradition to do so. Ja'far al-Sadiq, a great grandchild of Muhamad and prominent scholar in his era, claimed that the shaving, slaughtering for aqiqah, and naming of the child should be done within one hour.
Additionally, Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq replied in response to a question about "Is almsgiving (equal to the price of aqeegah) would be sufficient instead of aqeeqah" that: No, it wouldn't be sufficient; Allah likes giving food and slaughtering.
Aqiqah is a type of sadaqah and it is also sunnah. According to another hadith from Ja'far al-Sadiq, every born is in pawn of aqeeqah; namely it would be exposed to death/kinds of calamities if they don't do aqeeqah for the child. It is forbidden for the birthing mother to eat from the meat of aqiqah.
Islamic Historical Usage
Abu Talib performed aqiqah for Muhammad on the seventh day of his birth and invited members of his family for the occasion, who asked "what is this?" to which he replied "Aqiqah for Ahmad". He claimed to have named him Ahmad "because of the praises of the inhabitants of the skies and the Earth for him."
Muhammad is said to have performed aqiqah for both Hasan ibn Ali and Husayn ibn Ali, his grandsons, on the seventh day of their births respectively by sacrificing one sheep each; the leg of which was given to the nurse that helped with the delivery. Anointing the baby with the blood of the sacrificed animal for aqiqah was a common practice among Arab pagans and was therefore prohibited in Islam.
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- Is aqeeqah obligatory to Mustahab (recommended)? yjc.ir Retrieved 26 June 2018
- Sunan al-Tirmidhi, hadith #1522–1524
- Aghighah and its rulings islamquest.net Retrieved 26 June 2018