Dog: Spiritual Meaning, Dream Meaning, Symbolism, and More

All around the world, dogs have been a part of our lives for more than 30,000 years.

They play different roles depending on what culture they are a part of. From tools for warding off pests to companions that sleep on the sofa beside us. 

But what are dogs beyond that?

They have such a presence in the physical world. Each with individual characteristics and personalities that it is hard to believe their soul does not transcend into something more. 

Well, that’s where this guide comes in. It will cover all of the important aspects of a dog and what they mean spiritually. It also tells you what it means when you see them in your dreams. And, what they symbolize in numerous different beliefs. 

As previously mentioned, dogs have characteristics and personalities of their own. These can range greatly depending on what breed of dog it is.

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That is why, when we talk about dog spirits, totems, etc. we will include examples of different popular dog breeds. This way you can get the best idea of what they each mean. These breeds will consist of the Labrador retriever, bulldog, German shepherd, and Siberian husky.

Don’t worry if the dog that you are having spiritual experiences is not included in this list. There are many resources out there that you can turn to. Those will tell you all that you need to know about your specific breed. 

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Dog Spirit Animal

Your spirit animal will come to your aid once you are experiencing a difficult obstacle in life. More so when you are looking for guidance and reassurance during this time.

However, before this happens, you must find your spirit animal. You can do this through meditation or paying attention to what media shows you. This can include repetition of dog breeds that have been presented to you. Such repetition can be a way for them to communicate with you. 

You must be patient with your spirit animal if it does not show itself to you straight away. You cannot choose which animal you are presented with as they choose you.

In some instances, more than one spirit animal can present itself to you if you experience lots of emotional highs and lows. 

Once the spirit animal – in this instance a dog, has shown itself to you, it is up to you whether you accept it as your spirit animal by following the guidance it gives you and listening to the messages that it tells you. 

Generally, when you have a dog as your spirit animal it means that you share some of the characteristics of a dog such as being family oriented and loyal.

Having a dog as your spirit animal is a great one to have. You will have a spirit that will stick by your side and will love you unconditionally. 

Labrador Retriever

If you have a Labrador retriever as your spirit animal, it means that you are open to other people who are very friendly.

You do not judge others for their choices. You support them either way but at the same time not afraid to set boundaries. Such boundaries protect yourself from giving away too much of yourself to others. 

Having these qualities makes you a popular person to turn to when needing advice. You can suffer from negatives such as being too quick to ‘save’ people even though they do not need saving. But the ones closest to you know that you only do it with good intentions. 

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Bulldogs come in little packages. But, are brimming with self-assurance which is something we could all do with a bit more of.

Those with the bulldog as their spirit animal are so loyal. But, they are stubborn and will always try to do the right thing. You have a great sense of self. Unless provoked, you are very laid back and love making other people laugh. 

The bulldog will help you approach things from an angle that is not so black and white. So, you can be open to the idea of changing your mind or accepting that sometimes there is no justice. 

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German Shepherd

This breed of dog is favored by the forces because they are brave and honorable. Such are characteristics that you probably have in common.

The German shepherd is there to walk beside you and protect you from the negativity you may face.

They also teach you to be aware of what is happening around you at all times. Moreover, they teach you to observe when the best time is to act in progressing towards your goal. 

As well as being observant, it also teaches you how to pay extra attention to the people in your life. If they are struggling, give them a helping hand. 

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Those with this breed of spirit animal will take their role as the guardian of the ones they love. They will fiercely protect those around them.

If you are a particularly adventurous person who is always up for a challenge, then it is no surprise that you are given a German shepherd as a spirit animal. 

However, with the pressure that is put upon them to perform, people with this spirit animal can suffer from harsh judgment from themselves for any mistake they make big or small.

The spirit animal will teach you how to forgive yourself and not worry about not serving others as much. 

Siberian Husky 

These dogs were bred to pull heavy sleds for up to 20 miles (ca. 32 km) at a time and enjoy every step of it, they are not focused on the finished line.

This is a valuable lesson that the spirit animal can teach to their human counterparts with the journey being the most important part instead of the destination.

The personality of those with the husky as their spirit animal tend to be outgoing. They are also gentle, and up for whatever life throws at them. 

Having a Siberian husky as a spirit animal will teach you how to follow your instincts. This helps you make the best decisions for your life. And, you will never lose who you are and what matters to you.

The route in which huskies follow when pulling a sled represents the path through life. The different types of terrain that need to be navigated around depict the obstacles that are encountered in life.

This teaches you how to overcome different challenges in the best way. From being careful around sensitive problems to being bold and powering through others. 

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Dog Totem Animal

A totem animal is there to guide you and to represent values that you hold dear and practice in your day-to-day life.

To find your totem animal, it may only take a particular interest in that animal that you can connect deeply with, otherwise, it could take meditations, visions, and dreams to find out which animal is there to be your totem. 

No matter the breed of dog, they stand for the same fundamentals of being loyal, faithful, and protective.

Dogs as totem animals represent an everlasting love to friends and family and are more devoted than any other animal. 

Having a dog totem also symbolizes your ability to be open to any spiritual path and it is almost impossible for you to abandon your beliefs or faith. 

Dog Power Animal

In a general sense, power animals are guides who tend to appear in your visions, dreams, or other medians.

They will walk beside you throughout your different stages of life all the while teaching, protecting, and guiding you so that you can fulfill your purpose as the person you were meant to be. 

They can be mistaken for spirit animals but there is an easy way to separate the two.

Spirit animals are there for us when we need help during a difficult time in our lives and offer support, and guidance, whereas the power animal is who you are. 

If you need support or are suffering from burnout, having a dog as your power animal can re-energize you and bring you positivity that you were struggling to find.

This will teach you that it is okay to drop your duties for a little while and do something that serves you and you alone – even if it goes against what you are used to. 

This is an especially important thing to practice when you have lots of friends that you serve and devote yourself to as people with dog power animals usually do.

The friendly, open personality is what attracts so many people into your friend circle that it can be quite draining when you are trying to give a bit of yourself to all of them at all times. 

Dog Dreams 

Since we come across a lot of dogs in our waking lives, they tend to be popular animals to dream about as we have a deeper understanding of what they represent and how we associate with them.

Depending on what they are doing in our dream, they can teach us a lot about how we are feeling at the time and can even give a hint as to what may happen in the future.  

If you dream you are being chased by a dog, it can be a representation of your anxiety and that you are running away from something such as responsibilities or feelings.

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It can also mean that you have some aspects in your life that you need to get better control of, much like the dog in the dream that is chasing you because no one is controlling it. 

Seeing a wild dog in your dreams can mean that you are wanting to express yourself but are not able to, this may be due to the people or environments in your life that are quelling this part of you. You feel that you are not able to choose your own path in life and that you have no freedom.

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If you see a pack of wild dogs, it can mean that you are longing to feel protection, companionship, and a sense of belonging. 

However, if you are bitten by a dog in your dream, it means that you or someone else is being unkind to you and are not validating your emotions, especially if you are being bitten on your hands.

If you are being bitten on your ankles it can represent the confusion that you are experiencing in your life such as a big choice that you do not know to move forward with. 

Dreaming about puppies is not only very cute but can also symbolize new beginnings in your life including friendships, jobs, or moving house.

If you feel protective over the puppies in your dream then it may signify something you need to protect and nurture in the waking life that you may be neglecting or dismissing.

Puppies are also carefree and search for fun which may be a sign for you to have more fun and worry less. 

Other than deciphering what it means when dogs show up in our dreams, there are also different meanings that dreaming of dogs has in correlation to culture and religion.

For example, in Christianity, dreaming of dogs means that you have good intentions and are on the right path, they also represent protection and loyalty. 

If you dream of a black dog, it might be a way that your brain is processing a negative emotion such as grief, isolation, or being apart from a loved one. The black dog can also represent something more positive such as a change you are going through.

Despite some pre-conceived ideas, it is not unlucky for a black dog to show up in your dreams as they are only there to convey a message that no other animal or dog would’ve been able to do. In fact, having black dogs in your home can help ward off bad luck as they protect your energy. 

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Dog Tattoo Meaning

Many people get tattoos of dogs because it is a memorial to a dog in their life that has passed.

It can be a great way to pay tribute to a dog that was once a big part of our lives that we will now carry with us not only in memory but as art on our body as well. 

Other than this, depending on how the dog is positioned in the tattoo it can mean multiple things such as loyalty, playfulness, or aggression to represent the characteristics of the person who has the tattoo. 

Dog Spiritual Meaning

It can be said that dogs themselves are spiritual beings because they are not clouded by any negative intent and only know how to live in the present.

They love others unconditionally and are full of wisdom, even if they can be a bit silly as well sometimes.

A dog can heal us just by being around us as we stroke them or talk to them. It releases a chemical in our brain that can make us feel less stressed and more at peace which is a great lesson to teach us. 

Some say that dogs can be messengers between us and the divine and angels can present themselves to us in the form of a dog.

If the angel feels that the best way to communicate with you is through a dog then that is what they will do whether you are aware of it or not. 

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Dog in Astrology & Zodiac Signs 

In the Chinese zodiac, there is the sign of the dog which is in the 11th position. Those born in the year of the dog are known to be honest, kind, loyal, and cautious.

They will do whatever they can for the people who mean the most to them but are not good at communication which can make others believe that they are stubborn. 

Dog Symbolic Meanings

Dogs, in general, symbolize loyalty, devotion, and protection, but when we consider different breeds, this can vary slightly.

Black dogs symbolize something very different as they are not part of the physical world but instead are connected to death and superstition much like black cats.

They are said to guard the underworld so that they can keep an eye on those that have passed.

  • Labrador Retriever – energetic, friendly, outgoing
  • Bulldog – gregarious, gentle, willful
  • German Shepherd – brave, protective, loyal
  • Husky – energetic, confident, alert
  • Border Collie – energetic, intelligent, loyal
  • Jack Russel – fearless, athletic, stubborn
  • Poodle – intelligent, faithful, instinctual
  • Rottweiler – obedient, devoted, fearless
Image by Юрий Сидоренко from Pixabay


In conclusion, dogs are much more than our companions in the physical world. If we give them the chance to open our eyes to a different way of living, they can teach us a lot about ourselves and what we can do to feel more fulfilled. 

You do not have to be a spiritual person in order to feel the benefits from dogs as they can radiate positivity and reassurance just by being next to us.

It is hard to find an animal that is as loyal and willing to stick with us through the challenges that we face the same way that a dog is. When they appear to us in dreams and visions, the least we can do is allow them to guide us.

Dogs are positive animals, even if you see a black dog in your visions or dreams it is because it is protecting you and your energy.

If a dog presents itself to you as your spirit, power, or totem animal, do not turn it away because it is common, embrace it and learn to find the wonder in everyday things. 

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