To be honest, it always pissed me off when Christians would say animals don't have souls.
When I was little, I just thought it was unfair and made no sense. Looking into a loving dog's eyes; there is every bit as much of a "soul" there as there is for any human. I'm using the word "soul" pretty liberally here obviously. I mean that sparkle, you know? And it struck me as really cruel that a god would set up the universe in such a way that it would literally OBLITERATE people's beloved animals when they die, never to be seen again lol.
Then as I got older and actually started paying attention to the details of religions, it kind of dawned on me the level of insecurity required that made the bible's authors decide that only humans were super special enough to get eternal life.
You are SO concerned about being "better" than everything that's not you, from women to your kids to your slaves... You have to go a step further and say that in fact all life everywhere that isn't capable of telling you how great you are is "just" a biomechanical meatbox machine while YOU get to go to the magic kingdom and get scooby snacks forever and ever, even though the culture of the bible is infinitely more savage and "animalistic" than most of the animal kingdom, what with the mass rape and torture and genocide and whatnot...
For s**t's sake, a goddamn rabid polar bear would be more worthy of a heaven than the vile scumbags who invented it.
Of course, animals can't spend eternity praising or worshipping, so maybe that's why they never were allowed into Yahweh heaven. What? Can't kiss my ass? Can't worship me and kiss my feet? Then what do I need YOU for?
Blah. What a crock of s**t.
We just put down the family dog about 5 months ago... We had her back when I lived with my parents, and everybody in my family LOVED that dog so much. She was a pure bred black lab, and seriously, you've never met a sweeter, more gentle, loveable dog. I won't go into a lot of details, suffice it to say she was really special.
And putting her down was without a doubt one of the saddest experiences of my life. My mom insisted we stay with her and keep talking to her so she'd know she wasn't alone... I'll never forget my mom sweetly whispering "I'll see you on the other side baby girl" into her ear while the vet was giving her the hot shot. Oh Jesus, it was so, so bad man.
I LOVE dogs, always have, but you know whenever I'd see people who just lost their pets and they were emotional basketcases, I couldn't help think "Well, that sucks, but get a GRIP."
I was completely unprepared for how emotionally damaging it is to actually be there when something you love dies... To feel it's body go limp as the life dissapates from them. Human or not human, love is love, and that is one horrible fucking thing to experience. I'll never trivialize somebody's loss of a pet again.
You know, if there actually were different heavens, and among them a doggie heaven, I'd be really hard pressed to make up my mind which one I'd rather be at. Because honestly, I like about 90% of the dogs I meet, whereas that number drops to somewhere around 1/3rd when it comes to people.
Of course there are no heavens for anybody, and it's probably better that way, just because I don't know if the universe could handle the stink of cat heaven. Holy balls, what a horrible place that would be. Just and endless sea of furballs and a million million ghost felines meowing, screeching, and yowling at 150 decibels while not a single one pays any attention to you... Every square inch of soil is permanently soggy with cat piss and lumpy with billions of coughed-up hairballs and every front porch has stacks of rotting birds and rats on it and OH MY GOD THEY'RE GOING INTO HEAT EVERYBODY RUUNNNN!!!! RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!!!