Dogs cannot speak, act, or pray as we can, but they're the hearts of our homes. Our bond with our pets is extraordinary, as dogs have worked, ate, and slept beside us for centuries. Naturally, watching your dog struggle in pain or cross the rainbow bridge is heartbreaking.
But God can help.
As we learn in Job 12:10, God holds the souls of all creatures in His hands. When one of His creatures suffers, God is there to provide comfort and mercy from pain.
To help you pray to our Father on behalf of your furry friend, we'll share six dogs' prayers with you in this article.
As Christians, we turn to prayer when we need wisdom from our Father. Naturally, praying for your dog allows you to seek the Holy Spirit's guidance, as well as:
If you are praying for a dog that belongs to a friend or family member, your prayers (whether you choose to say them out loud, in a sympathy card, or through a keepsake) can be a comforting and warm reminder that you are there for them through the loss of their pet.
The Bible references animals and their role in God's world quite frequently.
For example, in Job 12:7-9, the Bible tells us that animals hold great knowledge about God's world, and thus, we should respect and learn from them:
"But ask now the beasts, and they shall teach thee; the fowls of the air, and they shall tell thee. Or speak to the Earth, and it shall teach thee; the fishes of the sea shall declare unto thee. Who knoweth not in all these that the hand of the Lord hath wrought this."
In Ecclesiastes 3:19-20, the Bible tells us that though we may think and act differently than animals, our animals' lives are just as valuable as ours:
"Yea, they have all one breath, so that man hath no preeminence above a beast, for all is vanity. All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again."
And in Proverbs 12:10, God commands us to care for our animals. In this verse, he states that anyone who fails to do so is wicked:
"Whoever is righteous has regard for the life of his beast, but the mercy of the wicked is cruel."
The Bible also commands us to show kindness and compassion to animals through many stories.
Take the story of Rebekah at the well in Genesis 23:19 as an example. In this story, Abraham sends a servant to find a kindhearted wife for his son Isaac. When the servant meets Rebekah, she collects water for both the servant and his camels. This act of kindness shows him that Rebekah is a good person.
Of course, we can also see God's love for animals through famous figures like St. Francis of Assisi (the Patron Saint of Animals and Ecology).
St. Francis of Assisi was born in Italy between 1181 and 1182. After retiring from his role as a soldier, St. Francis dedicated himself to the Lord and founded the Order of Friars Minor (also called "Franciscans").
Throughout St Francis' life, he preached a message of equality between animals and humans. He loved and appreciated all of God's creations equally, as he believed all animals (from bulldogs to golden retrievers to fish) are our brothers and sisters in Christ.
Though St. Francis died many centuries ago, many Christians and dog lovers still draw inspiration from his love for animals today.
Power is a powerful way to connect with God. But when you are sad, worried, or grieving, finding the words for your prayer can be difficult. To help you pray during this dark time, we'll share six dogs' prayers in this section.
Lord, I know that you show love and care for all your creatures, and today, I ask you to care for my furbaby. They're ill, and I fear they're suffering greatly. I know that you hold divine power over the Earth. Please heal them and guide them back to wellness. In Jesus Christ's name, amen.
Oh Lord, today I speak to you with great sadness in my heart. I've lost my beloved dog, [name].
Lord, my heart aches, but I'm thankful for you. You brought me and [name] together, and throughout [name]'s life, you granted them peace, happiness, and joy. Lord, I cannot thank you enough for the gifts you gave [name].
Now that my best friend has crossed the rainbow bridge, I ask that you watch over them with your loving heart. Thank you, Lord, amen.
Dear God, I've lost [name], and I cannot find them no matter how hard I look. I'm weary, worried, and tired. Please grant me strength and guidance to continue fighting. Lord, I know that you watch over every creature on your Earth. Please guide [name] back to me quickly. Bless you, Lord, amen.
Dear God, I ask you today for the gift of health for my beloved pet dog, [name]. May they heal from their wounds and run free of aches, pains, and the bitter elements of life. Let them enjoy sunshine, fresh water, and the joy of walks again. Lord, I love you and all of your creations. Please heal my dog as you healed me. Amen.
Lord, [name]'s time here on Earth is coming to an end, and I'd like to ask you to guide them over the rainbow bridge. Please hold [name]'s paw, pet their ears, and take away their pain so that they may only know peace as they take their last breath.
Lord, please cuddle [name] and make them feel loved and welcome in heaven. I know I cannot follow them over the rainbow bridge today, but I know I'll see [name] again in heaven. Amen.
Lord, the love St. Francis held for all living creatures inspires me. Let me say "thank you" to you for bringing his light into the world. Please watch over all dogs and grant them freedom from pain.
Please make me an instrument of your peace and love, and give me the strength to care for your creatures as St. Francis did. In Jesus' name, Amen.
When our pets are sick or have crossed the rainbow bridge, we feel immense grief. And while you should allow yourself to feel those heavy feelings fully, don't forget that God is always beside you.
Although our dogs don’t understand or love God as we do, God still loves them as He loves us. He loves and cares for your pet as you do, whether your dog is on Earth or in heaven. As Job 12:10 tells us: "In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind?"
To learn more about God's design for the world, listen to "The Creation" or our series of kid's stories. You can also listen to more content from pray.com by downloading our app from the iOS app store or the Google Play store.