Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge. When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to the Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water, and sunshine and our friends are warm and comfortable.
All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special, someone who was left behind.
They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; his eager body begins to quiver. Suddenly, he breaks from the group, flying over the green grass, faster and faster.
You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into those trusting eyes, so long gone from your life, but never absent from your heart.
Then you cross the Rainbow Bridge together...
The author of the “The Rainbow Bridge” is not known. It presents someone's idea of how God has provided for the pets we’ve loved when they pass from this life. It’s a beautiful picture of how we might be reunited with them one day. I’ve been surprised by how many people insist we will not be with our pets in heaven or on the new earth.
I think they're wrong—for a variety of Scriptural reasons.
Whose idea was it to create these wonderful creatures in the first place?
God's, of course. Animals were in the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve before death entered the world. They were created to live eternally—and would have if Adam and Eve had not sinned, bringing death and a curse on all of creation. Remember Noah and the worldwide flood? God created the rainbow as a sign of the covenant He made with man not to destroy the earth again by a flood. It’s interesting that Scripture says that God made that covenant not only with Noah and his descendants but with the animals also.
“And as for Me, behold, I establish My covenant with you and with your descendants after you, and with every living creature that is with you; the birds, the cattle, and every beast of the earth with you, of all that go out of the ark, every beast of the earth.” Genesis 9:9,10
Read Genesis 9:8-17 for all the details. God must have considered the animals important, since He emphasized that they were included in that covenant.
Jesus said that God is aware when even a sparrow falls to the ground. God is more loving and compassionate than any human could ever be. In fact, 1 John 4:8 says that God is love. If we are concerned about what happens to the animals we have loved here, God is even more so.
I believe He has provided for them as He has for us.
“Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father's will.” Matthew 10:29