What Will Happen to Our Pets at Christ’s Return?

Question from a reader:

I care very much about my dog. He is my best friend and responsibility. The world is getting crazier by the day, and it's possible that the rapture is not far off. In the event that Christians are raptured, what will happen to their pets? Will my dog find himself suddenly abandoned and helpless? Thinking of my dog in such anguish makes me feel sick. I want to believe that God would not leave His people's beloved pets to such a tragic end. What do you think?

Answer from Stephanie Anderson and Doreen  Button, EPM staff:

You can read some thoughts from Randy on the rapture here. Randy writes, “If forced to take a position, I personally think the best arguments lie in historic premillennialism, which believes in one return of Christ rather than a rapture, followed by a physical return seven years later. That’s the position taken by the majority of believers throughout church history.”

Whatever position one takes on the rapture, certainly there will be a second coming of Christ so I can understand your questions and concerns. The bottom line is we don’t know how that will all work out, but we do know that God is good, and that we can trust Him. If He cares about every sparrow (Matthew 10:29), then He certainly cares about our beloved pets, too. At His return, we'll be with Jesus and talk directly to Him. We will be face to face with goodness itself. All fear and worry and sorrow will melt away in His presence. “How great is your goodness, which you have stored up for those who fear you” (Psalm 31:19). (You might be interested in this compilation of links related to pets and Heaven that Randy put together.)

And speaking of trust, it isn’t necessary only for salvation—it’s also necessary for peace of mind here and now. When you think of your dog in anguish, you are creating an imaginary scenario in your mind which takes your focus away from our good God to such an extent that it makes you feel physically ill. To find freedom from anxiety, in Philippians 4:8 we’re told to focus on what is true, excellent, and praiseworthy. Those are all attributes of God. In Philippians 4:19, God promises to meet our every need. According to the One who created us, we quite literally have nothing to worry about.

I encourage you to meditate on Matthew 6:25-27 where Jesus tells us how much He values all of His creation and commands us not to worry. Instead, let’s follow His directions and “Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13).

Photo by Helena Lopes from Pexels

Stephanie Anderson is the communications and graphics specialist at Eternal Perspective Ministries. 

Doreen is part of the Eternal Perspective Ministries staff, and helps Randy with editing and answering reader questions. She is a certified biblical counselor.