“God will prepare everything for our perfect happiness in heaven, and if it takes my dog being there, I believe he'll be there” Billy Graham
I have heard people get really sideways about this topic. If you tell some people you think your cat or dog will be in heaven they start getting all puffed up and theological on you. My friend will never forget the time she mentioned how she missed her cat of 18 years and expressed the hope that he would be in heaven. She was sitting next to a Pastor and family friend. Instead of acting in love and sensitivity, he bristled and looked at her sideways with a cold look and said something to the effect of: "Pets do not go to heaven...." She will never forget it.
As a result an opportunity to act in love and reconciliation with a fellow believer was lost in that moment. A kind and otherwise compassionate person lost sight of what God wanted him to do right then, just like we all do at times.
In every topic of theological debate there is one thing that must be perfectly clear. We must always act in love. The book of Titus says we are: "to be peaceable and considerate, and always to be gentle toward everyone." 3:2 In every exchange love must be the backdrop surrounding our conversation, especially between fellow believers....."Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity."
Of course we know that animals don't have the ability to choose right from wrong, and they can't respond to the Gospel message of salvation either accepting or rejecting Christ....Duhhh! But God loves animals and thought they were an important part of creation as well as wonderful companions to the first man and woman, just as they are to us today.
The truth is, we really don't know all the details about heaven and what it will be like. We do know that it will be perfect, and there will be everything there that we could ever hope for. God has given us as much information as we need to know, and there are some things He has left purposefully out.
I realize in this era of goofy theology that we must stand our ground about what the Bible says and be responsible about it, and I don't think we should ever take liberties with Scripture and add something that isn't there. We must however, be careful about what the Bible doesn't say. If God wants to add my cats into the new created heaven, then He has that right. If it turns out they are not there, I think I will be so overwhelmed with everything I see that it won't matter!
"That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him." 1 Corinthians 2:9
That's my story and I'm stickin to it!