Do Pets Go to Heaven?

Healing Pet Grief

Wallace Sife, Ph.D wrote the book, The Loss of a Pet. He was my teacher when I was studying to become certified as a pet loss counselor.  In the 1970s he wrote an article called, All Pets Go to Heaven for a California Dog’s Club Newsletter. Since then, it has taken many forms and has even been ascribed to an anonymous author. Here it is in its original form by Dr. Sife:

Can you imagine a heaven without pets?

There is a very special place where beloved pets go after they die. This is only a temporary location. But there are trees and grass and lakes and everything they love. Here they can play and eat and sleep, even better than they did before they died. Now there are no aches or worries or dangers of any kind to trouble or threaten them. The only joy missing is their beloved human companion, you.

All health is restored completely, and all injuries are healed. Dogs and cats play and are at peace with each other, and they do not feel lonely for you. They miss you, but with the special wisdom that animals have, they trust that this condition will get better. And they confidently wait as they frolic.

A wonderful day will come for each of them, when in the middle of their peace, they will suddenly feel something is different. And all their senses will peak at the height of excitement and exuberance. They will sniff the air and look off in the distance where they recognize that dearly loved, very special presence. Then they will call out in elation and, with eyes shining and tail going wild, tear off at a full gallop, almost flying over the green grace.

Your expected eventual arrival has been sensed, and now there is nothing that can keep the two of you apart ever again. As you run toward each other, the tears jump from your eyes. Your pet leaps into your arms and you cling together in jubilant reunion. The joyous kisses rain on your face, and you kiss back just as ecstatically. Your hands so lovingly caress once more the beloved fur, the head and neck and body you knew so well. And you look into each other’s loving eyes and know that now everything is put right.

And then something will call the both of you on to a different field of warmth and nurture, where all the love you knew now comes to fruition. With your pet, you leave that special waiting area, pass into the main part of heaven, and begin a new existence there, together.

If you accept that pets can love us as much as we love them, then the logic is clear and cannot be denied. If you believe there is a heaven for people, then they must also be there, waiting for us, when we cross over. Heaven is love, and pets will always share that with us.  

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