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Pets And The Afterlife: Signs From The Rainbow Bridge

I hope you have tissues handy, because this one is a tearjerker.

The belief that departed loved ones, including dogs, leave signs from heaven is rooted in the realm of spirituality and personal faith rather than empirical evidence. For some individuals, myself included, the idea of receiving signs from their deceased pets offers solace and a sense of comfort during the grieving process.

When we experience the loss of a beloved pet, the emotional bond we shared can be incredibly strong, at times stronger than any bond we've shared with another human being. The thought of being reunited with our furry companion in some form or receiving messages from them after they have passed provides a source of hope and reassurance. These signs are often seen as a continuation of the connection and love that existed between us and our fur-babies during their lifetime.

Signs from heaven, or The Rainbow Bridge, can take various forms, such as meaningful coincidences, dreams, sensations, or encounters that seem to carry a special significance. Some people may believe that these signs are orchestrated by a higher power or the spiritual realm as a way to offer comfort and support during the grieving process.

Common signs of the afterlife, as reported by people who believe in spiritual connections with their departed loved ones, including pets, can vary widely. Some of the most frequently mentioned signs include:

Symbolic Objects: Finding meaningful objects like feathers, coins, or specific items associated with the deceased in unexpected places.

Dreams and Visitation: Experiencing vivid dreams where the deceased person or pet appears, offering comfort, guidance, or a sense of presence.

Synchronicities: Noticing repetitive number sequences, significant dates, or coincidences that seem to hold special meaning related to the departed loved one.

Animal Encounters: Seeing animals that hold significance to the deceased or are associated with them, such as birds, butterflies, or specific breeds of pets.

Electrical Disturbances: Electronics or lights flickering or behaving unusually, which some interpret as the presence of a spirit.

Fragrances: Catching familiar scents associated with the deceased, such as their perfume, cologne, or the scent of their favorite flowers.

Intuitive Feelings: Feeling a sudden rush of warmth, comfort, or a sense of presence, as if the departed loved one is still nearby.

Unexplained Noises: Hearing sounds like footsteps, voices, or familiar sounds associated with the deceased.

Music and Songs: Hearing specific songs or music that hold personal meaning to the departed person or pet.

Signs in Nature: Noticing rainbows, cloud formations, or other natural phenomena that are seen as symbolic messages.

As with any spiritual or faith-based belief, the significance of signs from the afterlife is subjective and can be a source of strength and healing for some while holding no relevance to others. It's crucial to respect and understand that individuals grieve in their unique ways and find comfort in different beliefs during the process of coping with the loss of a beloved pet.


When I experienced the loss of one of the most profound bonds I've ever had the pleasure of holding, I begged and pleaded to the higher power who took him away from me: How could you? Why? I don't understand this. What did I do to deserve this? Let this not be real. What can I do to have him back? I'll do anything. Please. PLEASE!!!

In the depths of my grief, I sought solace in the hope that there might be something or someone with whom I could strike a deal to make sense of this immense loss. I wanted to believe, I needed to believe there was a bargain that could be made...

Although we understand the inevitable reality that we will outlive our beloved pets, we instinctively push those thoughts aside, refusing to confront the day when they will leave us. Our hearts never want to fathom a world without them, leading our minds to believe they will be with us forever.

Our attachment to them runs deep, intertwined with the soulful gaze of their heartwarming eyes. Their presence fills our lives with boundless love, making it nearly impossible to grasp the idea that one day they will be gone. The magnitude of their absence is unfathomable, and we find ourselves yearning for a way to comprehend the void they leave behind.

It is indeed true that our brains are wired to form strong attachments to the ones we love, and this is a result of the brain's natural inclination towards recognizing patterns. The process of attachment involves the release of certain chemicals in the brain, such as oxytocin and dopamine, which create feelings of love, bonding, and pleasure.

When we form close connections with our loved ones, including our pets, our brains establish patterns of association and predictability. These patterns make us feel secure and confident that our loved ones will always be there for us. This phenomenon is often referred to as "attachment theory," a psychological concept developed by John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworth that explores how individuals form emotional bonds with others.

The brain's ability to recognize and rely on patterns is essential for our survival and well-being. It helps us navigate our social interactions and develop strong bonds with family, friends, and pets. When we experience the loss of a loved one, including a cherished pet, the brain may struggle to reconcile the absence of the familiar pattern, leading to feelings of grief and loss. Leaving us to constantly ask the question, "why?"

After the initial shock, my mind allowed me to step outside and do things like go to the grocery store, or to my parent's house, or even put my Christmas decorations up (at this point it was days before Christmas). I was aware that the world was still spinning, thus realizing I needed to let myself spin with it...while painfully enduring every single feeling of the grieving process.

And that's when I started to find, or as I like to think, receive signs from my baby boy, Bruce.

Now, I am not here to convince you that these are 100% signs, that there are real messages from the beyond. However, for me, such meaningful coincidences, which some call synchronicities, feels like a direct message from the spiritual realm: at just the right moment, beyond mere chance, something with significance relating to Bruce happened, leaving me with a sense of reassurance and connection. That is my personal belief.

I'd like to share my personal experiences on how Bruce Wayne Lee Banner has shown me that he still exists and is very much alive in my heart and soul.

The Number 22

These signs came in various forms, but the most recurring one was the number 22. Have you ever experienced an uncanny recurrence of number sequences like 11:11, 333, or even numbers related to your birthday, appearing repeatedly? Well, that was me with 22. It seemed to be everywhere, catching my eye at unexpected moments. Whether I looked at the clock, it would read 2:22, or while driving, a passing license plate would display 22. Even glancing up at a random house, I'd notice a big 22 on the mailbox. The frequency of witnessing the same series of digits everywhere left me intrigued, unable to dismiss it as a mere coincidence. Still, to this day I still see it just about every day. Numerology is extremely fascinating to me.

My bill from a breakfast diner. I never go out to breakfast, but the day I do, it's $22.00 exactly.

Deer Sighting

Another sign, about two-three weeks after Bruce passed, I looked out of my kitchen slider and saw a deer in my backyard. Now, I will say that I do live on the border of New Hampshire where there are a lot of woods, however I never saw one in my yard prior to this incident. I have since though.

In the beliefs of certain Native American cultures, deer carry multiple spiritual meanings, one of which suggests their presence symbolizes that angels are nearby. An excerpt from Crystal Clear Intuition states:

"Deer are extremely observant and aware of the subtle energies around them. They will not venture near areas where they feel in danger, sensing the energetics of a negative space. They also gravitate and are influenced by high vibrational spiritual energy. Because of this, they are often vehicles for angelic messages to be delivered to you.

If the sighting of a deer occurs with other synchronistic signs, especially repeating numbers (for example 11:11, 2:22, or 12:34), this is a sign that you may be receiving messages from your angels."

Coincidence? Or was Bruce reassuring me that he is still around?

Photo of deer in my backyard. Not great quality, I know, I'm sorry.

Leading Me Right To Him

This particular summer afternoon was just weeks after I got my other French Bulldog, Gyda, which was about 7 months or so after Bruce's passing the previous November. I was running an errand to Walgreens and I don't know why, but I was really missing him at that moment. All of the days since his absence fluctuated from good to bad, my emotions were unpredictable. I just had this terrible feeling of longing for him. I just wanted to hold him, kiss him, tell him I loved him so much.

During the drive, I was tearing up as I started talking to him, saying things like, "I hope you are okay, I hope you are living your best life and are seizure-free up there!" and, "I love you so much, I hope you know that. I miss you every moment of every day." My heart hurt. A lot.

Because I was crying, I didn't care about finding a decent parking spot as I arrived at Walgreens. I didn't want to be noticed, I just wanted to simply park my car and cry a bit more before composing myself to head inside the store. The moment I pulled into a parking space, I put my car in park, glanced up at the parked car in front of me and right there on the back windshield of this Honda HR-V, with the number 22 in the license plate, was a decal...of a French Bulldog silhouette...with angel wings.

The photo of the car in the Walgreens parking lot.

In that moment, an overwhelming surge of emotions enveloped me like never before. Laughter and tears intertwined, and I couldn't believe the reality of it all. Uncontrollable laughter filled my heart, while tears streamed down my cheeks. It felt surreal, yet deeply profound.

Amidst the laughter and tears, I sensed Bruce's comforting presence, guiding me to that very moment. Gratitude washed over me, knowing that he was still with me in spirit, bringing solace during a time of sorrow. The experience was both cathartic and heartwarming, a testament to the enduring bond we shared.

I still get goosebumps whenever I share that experience.

In that moment, I yearned to freeze time and hold onto it forever. With my eyes closed, I could almost envision him right in front of me, his striking blue eyes and joyful smile etched in my mind. I longed for his presence every single day, and there he was, filling my heart with warmth.

Gratitude overflowed as I thanked him for guiding me to this place, for reaffirming that his spirit was always with me, providing a sense of profound comfort. It was as though he had orchestrated this moment to console me.

A part of me wished for the owner of the Honda to appear, to share the incredible encounter that had just taken place. Would I have the courage to approach them and reveal what I experienced? Perhaps they, too, had recently lost their French Bulldog, Butkis, and would understand the deep connection I felt. It was a moment of contemplation, unsure of how it would unfold, yet filled with the significance of our shared love for our furry companions.

After a few minutes, I called my mom and shared with her what just happened.


There have been several more signs from Bruce, each leaving me in awe. One day, I stumbled upon his treasured green squeaky toy, hidden under the couch after he had passed. It was as if he wanted me to find it, a sweet reminder of the joy he brought into our lives.

Cardinal birds have also become frequent visitors in my life, always crossing my path and lingering for a while. Their presence feels like a comforting message from Bruce, assuring me that he's watching over me.

On a particularly poignant note, I welcomed David, my other French Bulldog from a different litter but related to Bruce, on the one-year anniversary of Bruce's passing, November 17th, 2022. The timing was not planned, but it felt like fate. David's birth time even held a special significance, 9:22 am on 9/2/22, a beautiful numerical connection to Bruce that made my heart skip a beat. It was as if Bruce's spirit was guiding us to this new furry family member, bringing even more love and joy into our lives.

Baby David with the blue squeaky on the right and Bruce with the green squeaky on the left.

Real experiences from other pet owners:


"After losing my sweet Labrador, Bella, I was heartbroken and missed her terribly. One evening, as I sat in the garden feeling her absence, a single white feather gently floated down and landed right beside me. White feathers were her signature, and in that moment, I knew she was sending me a sign of comfort and love from the other side. It brought tears to my eyes and a warmth to my heart, reminding me that our bond would forever transcend time."


"When my cat, Alfredo, passed away, I was devastated. One day, as I was sitting by the window feeling his absence, a playful butterfly appeared and fluttered around the sill for several minutes. Alfredo loved to chase butterflies in the garden, and I couldn't help but smile through my tears. It felt like he was reminding me of the joyful moments we shared and letting me know he was still with me in spirit."


"My beloved dog, Keaten, was my best friend and constant companion for over a decade. On the anniversary of his passing, I was feeling particularly emotional and missing him deeply. Just as I was about to go to bed, I heard a faint jingle of his collar coming from the hallway. I knew it couldn't be my current dog, as she was sound asleep. I followed the sound and found a forgotten dog tag of Keaten's that had somehow fallen from a shelf. It was like he was saying, 'I'm still here, watching over you.'"


"After saying goodbye to my rescue cat, Luna, I struggled with feelings of guilt and regret. One night, I had a vivid dream where Luna visited me, purring and rubbing against my leg just like she used to. In the dream, I could feel her warmth and love, and it brought me an overwhelming sense of peace. When I woke up, I knew in my heart that she was telling me not to dwell on the past, but to remember the happy times we shared together."


"Shortly after losing my dear beagle, Freddie, I was feeling lost without his companionship. One evening, as I was taking a walk in the park, a friendly dog approached me with a wagging tail and the same distinctive markings as Freddie. The owner explained that his dog's name was also Freddie. It was such a heartwarming and unlikely encounter that I couldn't help but believe it was a sign from my furry friend, letting me know that he was still by my side."

These heartwarming experiences of signs from pets in the afterlife offer solace, comfort, and a deep sense of connection to those who have experienced the loss of a beloved animal companion. They serve as reminders that love knows no bounds, even beyond this life, and that the unbreakable bond shared with our pets continues to touch our hearts long after they have crossed the Rainbow Bridge.


Now, I want to be clear that I can't guarantee these are definite signs (but the one in Walgreens parking lot though...). There's a possibility that we might unconsciously seek out cues that could relate to our pets in some way. However, the experience of meaningful coincidences, often referred to as synchronicities, feels like a direct message from the spiritual realm. It's like the universe aligns to bring something significant related to our pet just when we need it most, going beyond mere chance. These occurrences leave me with a profound sense of reassurance and a deepened connection.

It's important to recognize that these beliefs are based on spirituality and personal interpretation rather than scientific evidence. Not everyone may share these beliefs or find comfort in them, and each person's journey through grief is individual and valid in its own way. The key is to respect and support individuals in their grieving process, regardless of their beliefs, as they navigate their emotions and memories of their cherished pets.

Regardless of one's beliefs, the loss of a beloved pet can be a deeply emotional and challenging experience. People often find comfort and support in various coping mechanisms, whether through spirituality, grief counseling, or simply cherishing the memories and love shared with their pets during their lifetime. Ultimately, how people process and find meaning in the loss of their pets is a deeply personal and individual journey.

If you're curious about pets and the afterlife and would like to hear some heartwarming stories, I highly suggest this book: Signs From Pets In The Afterlife: Identifying Messages From Pets In Heaven

You can also listen to it with a free 3 month subscription for Audible.

If you have a personal story or experience about signs you've received and would like to share, please leave a comment or message me directly! I would love to read about it!

Love always,

Heather, Pack Leader

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