Q&A

Do Pets Go to Heaven?

By February 25, 2017 2 Comments

Full Question

What happens to dead pets? do they go to heaven?

Answer

What is heaven?  “state of supreme, definitive happiness”, “communion of life and love with the Trinity, with the Virgin Mary, the angels and all the blessed” (CCC 1024).
This state presupposes rational knowledge and love which animals do not posses and what this means is that this heaven defined cannot be experienced by any non-human animal.
Pets depend on their material makeup, they do not continue to exist after death as human souls do. They therefore cannot exist in heaven before the return of Christ on earth. However, when Christ creates the “new heaven and new earth” (see CCC 1043; 2 Pet. 3:13; Rev. 21:1), the pets who exist at the time of his return might be able to exist therein. Not in the sense of experiencing the Beatific Vision like humans will, but might be able to live on the new earth. I said “pets who exist at the time”, because those who have died cannot resurrect since they do not have rational souls.
The Church has never given any teachings concerning pets in heaven. Any response will be appealing to reason and not to any predefined teachings of the Church.

 

2 Comments

  • I’ll be honest: as much as my pets truly love me, it is hard for me to believe they won’t be there.

  • JoAnn Lutz Leppert says:

    A local Friar has written two books…Will I SEE MY CAT in Heaven and same title except My Dog. Jesus used many different animals .. Dove, goats, donkey, camels, fish, and sheep to teach us..If He used them He loved them and surely there is place for animals.

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