I’ve often thought about the question of “do animals go to heaven?” There is not a clear explanation in the Bible, but the basic difference between people and animals is that people are made in the image and likeness of God.
Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. Genesis 1:26-27.
Being made in the image and likeness of God means that people are like God, capable of spirituality, with mind, emotion, and will, and they have a part of their being that continues after death. Ecclesiastes states that there is a “spirit” in man but also in animals in Isaiah 3:19, 21, but this does not necessarily mean that the animal’s spirit is eternal.
The Bible does say that animals will exist after His return and the beginning of the Kingdom. “The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them. The cow will feed with the bear, their young will lie down together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox. The infant will play near the cobra’s den, the young child will put its hand into the viper’s nest. They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain, for the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.” Isaiah 11:6-9. Here in the Word of God it does declare that animals will still exist in the future, after Christ’s reign begins. What a heavenly time that will be with all animals and people living in peace and happiness!
The Bible also notes that Jesus returns to the earth with His army of saints on white horses, “I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and wages war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. The armies of heaven were following him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean.” Revelation 19:11-14
According to the scriptures, there isn’t absolute support saying with certainty that answers the question “Do animals go to heaven?” At least we know that according to the Bible that animals will exist in the Kingdom of heaven according to Isaiah 11:6-9. If our pets will be resurrected or not, we just cannot know for sure.
A more important question is if we will be in heaven, will our family and friends be there too? Decide today to accept Jesus Christ as your Savior and have the full assurance that you will go to heaven and receive eternal life. If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9
As for your pets being in heaven or not, the Bible does explain that Heaven is a happy place where our joy will be immeasurable compared to here! I think that a lot of our joy comes from our pets that God provided for us, so maybe there are possibilities of them being there too? I’ve heard of instances of patients that are passing on in the hospital that were suddenly smiling and made visible gestures that their pet that passed on before them was greeting them.
Only our all knowing God and creator knows the absolute answer to the question “do animals go to heaven?”