My friend had just lost his beloved dog. I offered my condolences on the phone, then I decided I could do more, so I attempted, with this letter…


Dear Fred,

Your beloved companion Billy is not dead, he has been re-assigned, and not to “Doggie Heaven.” There is no such thing.

It is true, dogs have an affinity for other dogs and like having a good sniff, rubbing noses, or making new doggies, but that is not where their hearts lie. Dogs love people, and Billy loved you. Heaven for him is to be with someone in the hereafter, who will be there for eternity as he has been loved, respected, and cared for on earth by you. You might wonder how I know this. Nobody told me, and I didn’t just read about it. Down deep I always knew it had to be true.

I believe there is a place called heaven for the likes of you and me and I also know it wouldn’t be the heaven we envision if it didn’t include our dogs. OK that proves it. We share heaven with our dogs, and l bet we’ll see a lot of other things in heaven, maybe even with the lion lying down with the lamb.

Just to be sure, when I attended a dinner party that included two men of the cloth, I took the opportunity to accost them with the “doggie heaven” question. Without hesitation, they agreed with me.

That settles it! You will see Billy and I will see my dogs of the past fifty years: George, Jack, Teddy, Bert, Jenny, Bobby, Andy, and Annie. Won’t that be fun?


Mark Twain said, “The dog is a gentleman; I hope to go to his heaven not man’s.