Share

Will I meet my cats on the Rainbow Bridge and be reunited with my beloved furry felines in the afterlife?

At Paws, we like to think so, though nothing is for certain.

Aug. 28 marks Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day, a time to reflect on all the cats we’ve lost. Last August, I never remotely I would not be spending this summer without my beloved Siamese Cat, Linus. I never dreamed he would not be sitting beside me while I am writing about two cats that passed over the Bridge in late 2017 and 2018.

Cat dividing line

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

We are also a participant in other affiliate link programs and the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

Cat dividing line

What is The Rainbow Bridge?

When our beloved pets die and pass on to another world, it is said they pass over The Rainbow Bridge, and wait there in peace while they wait for their beloved owners to join them. And Paws wonders will I meet my cats on the Rainbow Bridge?

Paws wonders will I meet my cats on the Rainbow Bridge? Logo designed by Deb Barnes.

Paws had never heard of The Rainbow Bridge until my first cat was euthanized some 13 years ago. My beloved Smokey Blue had become so thin and weak. Her thyroid and kidneys were in poor shape. She was almost 18, and had been in my life since she was six-months-old. She was indeed a love, a true snuggle bug, or should I say snuggle cat.  When she went to sleep, she just looked at her human with loving eyes, saying thank you.

A few days later, the vet’s office sent a sympathy card with the Rainbow Bridge. Paws wondered where did it all come from and what does it mean?

When a pet dies, it goes to the meadow, having been restored to perfect health and free of any injuries. The pet runs and plays all day with the others.

There is fresh food and water, and the sun is always shining. While the pet is at peace and happy, they miss their owner who had to be left behind on Earth.

When their owner dies, they come across the Rainbow Bridge. The pet stops what they are doing, sniffs at the air, and looks into the distance where they see their owner.

They run as fast as they can until they are in their owner’s arms, licking their face in joy while their owner looks into the eyes of their pet who was absent on Earth, but never absent in their heart.

Then side by side, they cross the Rainbow Bridge together into Heaven, never again to be separated.

The Rainbow Bridge Poem

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 Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of 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 to them, who had to be 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 quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him 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 the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together….”

Author Unknown

It’s comforting to think that the Paws family will once again be reunited. While six of my kitties have departed this earth and are not a part of my everyday life, they will always live on in my heart and mind. Why?

  • Memories live on forever
  • Memories never die
  • Photos & Videos help the memories stay alive
  • Writing makes me think about all the great times we shared

My Pink Collar developed mouth cancer in late 2018. She was in significant pain. She was anything but a snuggle cat. She was happy sitting at my side, purring in her indignant fashion. She was a cat with an attitude. If you crossed her line, she’d swat you with her paw. She loved potato chips, and Paws used them to comfort her during her vet acupuncture visits for arthritis pain. Read more about Pink Collar at:

In late 2017, Mom’s cat, Clyde started getting disoriented. He would yowl in the middle of the night because he couldn’t find me. We were both upstairs, and we shared the bed. Then, he stopped eating, and started losing weight. He was in the beginnings of kidney failure. He was a scaredey cat, and Paws never thought he would last 8 years after his real human went into a nursing home. We became good friends.

Read more about Clyde at:

Picture of cat wondering if he will meet his owner on the Rainbow Bridge
Will I meet my cat Clyde on the Rainbow Bridge?

Linus was the love of my life. He would put a paw on each side of my shoulders, like giving me a hug. He would purr me to sleep at night as he snuggled next to my head. He would follow me around like a dog. He would greet guests at the door, letting them know they were welcome. He loved having his photo taken. He had steel blue eyes and as a Traditional Siamese Cat, he was absolutely handsome. Now, a senior cat, he was healthy. Last fall, I noticed he was drinking more and more water. He was diagnosed with diabetes. Once I started administering insulin, it was like a light went out. His eyes dimmed. He stopped eating. Four months later, it hurt to move. On April 10, Vet at Your Door came to the house after a horrendous snowstorm, and we said our good-byes.

For more about Linus, check out:

I still mourn for him. In his memory, Paws is writing a graphite novel (kind of an adult comic book) featuring Linus. Who Needs Men, I’ve Got Cats is now in the design phase, and we hope pre-orders can be accepted in the near future. It is written in memory of Linus and his sibling, Tubby (who succumbed to FIP) at only two years of age. Life with these two cats triggered the idea. When Linus passed, it was time to eulogize him and make this book happen. Paws has tried to work with novice artists in the past, but it all fizzled. The stars aligned on his passing, and within a month, I was negotiating a contract with an artist, one who is helping guide me through the publishing process.

Read more about Tubby at:

Needless to say, The Rainbow Bridge is very helpful, as I do believe Linus’ spirit lives on, a part of it within me.

Why The Rainbow Bridge Concept is helpful?

  • We want to feel our pets are at peace, just like, we want to feel the special humans in our lives, are in a better place.
  • And just as with humans, we hope to be with them once again in the hereafter.

Read more at:

Even the late Evangelist Billy Graham stated no reason why we can’t expect to be re-united with our special pets when we pass on to heaven. Many religions believe in some sort of here-after life. And Paws believes there’s no reason we can’t expect to connect in the after world with our soul-pets as well as those special people in our lives.

Key Points About the Rainbow Bridge

  • Written sometime between 1980 and 1992, by an unknown author
  • A mythological place where a pet goes upon death, eventually to be reunited with its owner.
  • Research points to three potential authors:
    • Paul C. Dahm, a grief counselor in Oregon, said to have written the poem in 1981 and published it in a 1998 book of the same name.
    • Dr. Wallace Sife, head of the Association for Pet Loss and Bereavement, whose poem ‘All Pets Go to Heaven’ appears on the association’s website as well as in his book, ‘The Loss of a Pet’.
    • William N. Britton, author of Legend of Rainbow Bridge, 1984. His website Legend of the Rainbow Bridge states:

‘Animals create bonds in our hearts that can never be broken. The Rainbow Bridge, based on a Shaman’s stories of Native American legend shared personally with Britton, brings renewed hope and comfort to our hearts, knowing that one day we will all be united at Rainbow Bridge.

Legend of Rainbow Bridge, 1984
  • Whether pets go to heaven or wait for the humans to join them in an afterlife has deep roots, with the concept dating back over a century. In 1902, Margaret Marshall Saunders, Canada’s first million-selling author, published a sequel to her award-winning novel, ‘Beautiful Joe‘. Describing a world where animals find themselves after death, ‘Beautiful Joe’s Paradise‘ chronicles the afterlife of many of the animals introduced in her earlier books.
  • The inspiration for the poem could have come from an ancient 13th Century Norse legend says worthy Norse warriors cross to Valhalla (a majestic, enormous hall located in Asgard, ruled over by the god Odin) over Bifrost, a rainbow bridge that reaches between Midgard (the world) and Asgard, the realm of the gods.

So we are left asking will I meet my cats at the Rainbow Bridge in the afterlife? It’s comforting to think so.

More info on will I meet my cats on the Rainbow Bridge?

The newsgroup rec.pets.dogs, posted about Rainbow Bridge on the Internet on Jan. 7, 1993, quoting the poem from a 1992 (or earlier) issue of ‘Mid-Atlantic Great Dane Rescue League Newsletter’, quoting it from the Akita Rescue Society of America. Other posts from 1993 suggest it was already well established and being circulated on the Internet at that time, enough for the quotation of even a single line to be expected to be recognized by other newsgroup readers.

Cat dividing line

Don’t miss out on the latest Paws News for Cat Lovers. Sign up for our email list and get a free copy of our Comprehensive Guide to Keeping Kitty from Destroying your Sofa.

Share

24 COMMENTS

  1. Such a wonderful and thought provoking post about your beautiful furbabies. I love the idea of the Rainbow Bridge and am now just teaching it to my 3.5 year old grandson as we lost two of our Huskies last summer and he is very close to our last two now. I believe their energy lives on as I’ve seen clear messages from my departed heart dog Gibson and our first Husky, my daughter’s. I think the Rainbow Bridge is indeed Heaven. <3

  2. The idea of being reunited with the pets that we have shared our heart with over the years is comforting, regardless of your own personal religious beliefs. While Christians believe in the idea of ‘heaven’ and being reunited there, Pagans may not but they do embrace the idea of a spiritual realm where those who have passed go… it’s another version of the heaven concept.

  3. BJ – reading about the Rainbow Bridge this week was special for me. My wonderful cat, Katya, was a gift from my husband, Graham, who died 7 years ago on Aug.27. He was not a cat person, but he said she was the nicest cat we’d ever had. I tell her she’s my “gift from Graham.” Thanks, BJ, and so sorry about Linus.

  4. I remember when my kids first asked if our cats would be in heaven. I said it wouldn’t be heaven if they weren’t. Just like a house could never be home without a cat. I’m in no hurry but the idea of seeing all my rainbow bridge babies running to me is sort of a happy one.

  5. Lovely post. I often think about my “rainbow bridge pets”, even through some of them have been gone for many years now. I’m not a very religious person, but I do believe there’s something after this life and I hope beyond hope that, when my time comes, I’ll be somehow reunited with all those I have loved and lost.

Please leave your paw prints and comments here.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.