Do Dogs Go to Heaven?

Picture of a Chow Dog

We love our dogs. Everything about them fills us with joy. Yet for each dog owner, there comes a time when we must say goodbye.  It is the most heart wrenching decision a dog owner ever has to make, and one that is not undertaken lightly.

When Is It Time to Let Go? Will You Meet Fido Again in Heaven One Day?

Goodbyes are never easy, but somehow the hope of a happy reunion in a beautiful place where you will both remain eternally young and never again suffer the pains of this life helps to lessen the blow. The knowledge that it is not a goodbye just a “See you later” makes all the difference in the world.

But is this really the case?

What We Know for Sure

Do dogs go to heaven? It’s an interesting question, and one that dog owners around the world would love an answer to. While the Bible does not definitively give us an answer to this question, there are sufficient verses therein to help us understand God’s view of animals.

God Loves Animals

There is no doubt that God loves animals. He created them from the same materials He used to create man—the dust of the earth made flesh through His life-giving breath.  But more than this, He had a design and a purpose for them.

The Bible teaches us that God created all things for His pleasure. Revelation 4:11 says, “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.”

God created the animals for the same purpose as He created man. He takes pleasure in them. Animals make God happy, and He loves them dearly as He loves all of His creation. But perhaps animals also have a slightly different purpose to our own. God intended for them to bring pleasure to us as well; perhaps to be a bright spot to lighten our heaviest days.

God Shows His Love Through Provision

God provides for His creation. If you belong to Him, He has promised to care for your needs. So too does He care for animals.

In Matthew 6:26, the Bible says, Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?”

God loves animals so much that He ensures that they are fed. But God not only makes certain that His creatures receive proper nutrition, He also watches over them for their protection and well-being.

Matthew 10:29 says, “Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father.”

There is not a single thing that befalls God’s creation that He does not know about and has not permitted. He cares about animals, and He wants to give them a good life full of all the things that they need to thrive.

The Bible Speaks of Animals Being in Heaven

Though the Bible is decidedly silent on whether our pets will join us in heaven, it does clearly state that animals will be there. From this, we can deduce two things.

First of all, God wants us to be happy. Whatever we need to be happy in heaven will be there. We know that the primary source of our joy is Jesus and being in His presence will be like nothing we have ever known. Still God has allowed relationships with our pets on this earth to provide comfort, companionship, and joy. The bond is undeniable. If pets enrich our lives on earth, we can reasonably assume that yes, we can look forward to enjoying that same bond with them in heaven.

But secondly, if animals are in heaven, it is an encouragement to believe that our beloved pets also resurface there when they pass from this life to the next. The Bible speaks of the lion and the lamb taking up residence in heaven. If God has made provision for them in His heavenly home, it makes sense that He has a spot prepared for Fido too.

God Created Animals for Our Pleasure

Consider the truth that God delights in giving His children good gifts. Luke 11:13 tells us that God knows His children well enough to give us things that enrich our lives and make us happy. In the book of 2 Samuel, the prophet Nathan shares a powerful story with King David. He recounts the tale of a man who had little in life in terms of wealth or accumulations, but he did have one thing that he cherished—a little lamb. He loved his beloved pet as he would love a precious family member. 2 Samuel 12:3 says, “…it {the lamb} grew up together with him and with his children. It ate of his own food and drank from his own cup and lay in his bosom; and it was like a daughter to him.”

God knew the little lamb would bring the poor man great joy. He provided the animal for his benefit and took great pleasure from the man’s bond with his beloved pet.

God Told Man to Care for Animals

When God created the animals, He had a plan in place for their care. It was always His intention for man to bond with them and to provide for their needs. He gave Adam the task of naming them all, and after the fall, the responsibility for their upkeep fell to him with God providing heavenly oversight.

Proverbs 12:10 teaches that “A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast.”

In other words, a good man cares about the animals entrusted to his care.

Will We See Fido Again in Heaven?

While we do not have a definitive answer from God as to whether or not the pets we know and love on earth will be by our sides in heaven, we do know that He has provided them for us to enjoy during our time here.

Often when it comes to the Bible, things are not as black and white as we would like them to be, and we have to operate in shades of grey. When this happens, we must interpret what we do not know by the light of what we DO know. We know that God loves animals, created them for His pleasure and ours, and has made provision for their care. We also know that there will be animals in God’s heavenly kingdom.

While only God knows the entirety of His plan, it’s a pretty safe bet to hope that the Rainbow Bridge ends at the throne room of heaven.

Saying goodbye is hard, but the hope of a sweet reunion helps to ease the pain.



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