No animal heaven?! Wah!
DH and I talk about heaven regularly, even though neither of us really believes it exists as a concrete place where "souls" literally "go," as if they were traveling to Toledo. It just comforts us to imagine our stillborn daughter as she might have been in life, and the concept of "heaven" gives us a culturally-shared, familiar structure to talk about what she might have been like and how she was when she was still with us.
Ditto for our deceased animals. It is comforting to have a concept that allows my imagination to freely and creatively explore the memory of how they were in life, without constantly bemoaning the fact that they are not with us anymore. Allows them to live in my memory. Maybe that is heaven.
"I bet Penelope is fat and glossy and munching on yogies up there. And fighting with all the other ferrets! Givin' em all a lot of sass!"
So. Do I "believe" in all that stuff?
I hope to pass on that kind of philosophical idea of heaven to my kids-- but I think a lot of young children have to pass through sort of a Taking It All Very Literally phase before they can get to that spiritual-creative place. To me, that's not lying; that's laying a concrete kid-friendly simplified foundation for them to improvise on in later years.
I would be really disappointed if they got stuck on any sort of bare-bones literal interpretation of my religious and cultural ideas, though!
That would defeat the whole purpose! But I guess that some folks do get stuck there.