Story Behind the Song: Chris Young, ‘All Dogs Go to Heaven’
Losing a pet is a type of pain that's hard to express or explain to someone who has never experienced it. It's a fate most of us try not to think about until it arrives, instead focusing on the joy of companionship they bring to our lives while they're here.
During a recent roundtable discussion, Chris Young talked candidly about the special relationship he shares with his own pup, Porter, the type of lasting bond at the heart of his new track.
Below, Young shares the story behind "All Dogs Go to Heaven" in his own words.
"I think 'All Dogs Go to Heaven' is an important song... it's special to me. It's one of my favorites because it's just different. It's not something that I've done before. I would say I'm properly equipped to handle the coming onslaught of people relating to that song, mainly because of the song 'Drowning' that I wrote because I had so many people tell me stories about people they lost. I wrote that about a friend of mine that I lost. Am I going to absolutely fail on the Opry trying to play 'All Dogs Go to Heaven'? I don't know. I hope not. I don't need to do that again. [Laughs] I'm not a crier, but when it comes to animals, it's a different thing when it's losing one of your friends or losing a pet you've had for a long time.
[When I met my dog, Porter], he was basically a baked potato size animal, and he weighs 115 pounds. I love this dog... he was a Christmas present for my little sister, and he was a surprise. And he is now a 115-pound tank of a German shepherd.
I think, regardless of whether you have big dogs, a small dog, whatever, pet of any kind, you can kind of get the point of 'All Dogs Go to Heaven' because it's just [about how] they're probably not gonna outlive us. I think everybody doesn't want to think about that, but you know that's going to be something you have to deal with at some point. But it's just the idea of [knowing] they'll be waiting on you when you get up there."
Chris Young, "All Dogs Go to Heaven" Lyrics:
He's hanging out the window on every Sunday drive / He's front door standing guard, barking as the cars go by / He's always glad to see me, and sad to see me go / He's the closest thing to pure love that I've ever known
And that's why all dogs go to Heaven / To spend forever running wild and free, off the leash / I know he'll probably go before me / Oh, and that's the day I'm dreadin' / But he'll be waiting on me at the gates / 'Cause all dogs go to Heaven
If you spell God backwards, you'll get man's best friend / And when this life is over, man, that ain't gonna end / And you won't find it in the Bible, but I know it's true / If up there in the sky, there's a place for me and you
Then all dogs go to Heaven / To spend forever running wild and free, off the leash / I know he'll probably go before me / Oh, and that's the day I'm dreadin' / But he'll be waiting on me at the gates / 'Cause all dogs go to Heaven
There'll be bones for chewin', sticks for chasin' / And never-ending fields to play in
Because all dogs go to Heaven / To spend forever running wild and free, off the leash / I know he'll probably go before me / Oh, and that's the day I'm dreadin' / But he'll be waiting on me at the gates / Yeah, just like we ain't never missed a day / 'Cause all dogs go to Heaven / All dogs go to Heaven