وَلَوْ شِئْنَا لَرَفَعْنَـٰهُ بِهَا وَلَـٰكِنَّهُۥٓ أَخْلَدَ إِلَى ٱلْأَرْضِ وَٱتَّبَعَ هَوَىٰهُ ۚ فَمَثَلُهُۥ كَمَثَلِ ٱلْكَلْبِ إِن تَحْمِلْ عَلَيْهِ يَلْهَثْ أَوْ تَتْرُكْهُ يَلْهَث ۚ ذَّٰلِكَ مَثَلُ ٱلْقَوْمِ ٱلَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا۟ بِـَٔايَـٰتِنَا ۚ فَٱقْصُصِ ٱلْقَصَصَ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَفَكَّرُونَ
Asad Quran Translation
Now had We so willed, We could indeed have exalted him by means of those [messages]: but he always clung to the earth and followed but his own desires. Thus, his parable is that of an [excited] dog: if thou approach him threateningly, he will pant with his tongue lolling; and if thou leave him alone, he will pant with his tongue lolling.142
Such is the parable of those who are bent on giving the lie to Our messages. Tell [them], then, this story, so that they might take thought.
Because his attitudes are influenced only by what his earth-bound desires represent to him as his immediate "advantages" or "disadvantages", the type of man alluded to in this passage is always - whatever the outward circumstances - a prey to a conflict between his reason and his base urges and, thus, to inner disquiet and imaginary fears, and cannot attain to that peace of mind which a believer achieves through his faith.
Malik Quran Translation
Had it been Our will, We would have exalted him through those revelations; but he clung to this earthly life and followed his own desires. His similitude is that of a dog: if you chase him he lolls out his tongue and if you leave him alone he still lolls out his tongue. Such are those who deny Our revelations, tell them these parables, so that they might think over their behavior to Our revelations.
Yusuf Ali Quran Translation
If it had been Our will We should have elevated him with our signs; but he inclined to the earth and followed his own vain desires. His similitude is that of a dog: if you attack him he lolls out his tongue or if you leave him alone he (still) lolls out his tongue. That is the similitude of those who reject our signs; so relate the story; perchance they may reflect. 1150 1151
Notice the contrast between the exalted spiritual honours which they would have received from Allah if they had followed His Will, and the earthly desires which eventually bring them low to the position of beasts and worse.
The dog, especially in the hot weather, lolls out his tongue, whether he is attacked and pursued and is tired, or he is left alone. It is part of his nature to slobber. So with the man who rejects Allah. Whether he is warned or left alone, he continues to throw out his dirty saliva. The injury he will do will be to his own soul. But there may be infection in his evil example. So we must protect others. And we must never give up hope of his own amendment. So we must continue to warn him and make him think.
Mustafa Khattab Quran Translation
If We had willed, We would have elevated him with Our signs, but he clung to this life—following his evil desires. His example is that of a dog: if you chase it away, it pants, and if you leave it, it ˹still˺ pants. This is the example of the people who deny Our signs.1
So narrate ˹to them˺ stories ˹of the past˺, so perhaps they will reflect.
Regardless of whether they are warned or not, still they will not believe.
Piktal Quran Translation
And had We willed We could have raised him by their means, but he clung to the earth and followed his own lust. Therefore his likeness is as the likeness of a dog; if thou attackest him he panteth with his tongue out, and if thou leavest him he panteth with his tongue out. Such is the likeness of the people who deny Our revelations. Narrate unto them the history (of the men of old), that haply they may take thought.
Walaw shina larafaAAnahu biha walakinnahu akhlada ila alardi waittabaAAa hawahu famathaluhu kamathali alkalbi in tahmil AAalayhi yalhath aw tatrukhu yalhath thalika mathalu alqawmi allatheena kaththaboo biayatina faoqsusi alqasasa laAAallahum yatafakkaroona