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Dive into all the information, curiosities and history of the world’s animals. Study, history, curiosities for veterinarians, animal lovers, trainers and walkers. Everything you need and want to know about the animals of the world is on our blog. Species and breeds from all over the world and from all eras.
Spiritual Animals and Their Symbolic Meaning
Spiritual animals are our guides in life, pointing us in the right direction and teaching us lessons along the way. They make us aware of our inner self and allow us to walk the path while recognizing our higher purpose.
Knowing who is helping us offers a sense of security and assurance, and strengthens our sense of independence and resilience. Spirit animals are here to help us understand our personal challenges by exploring their symbolic meaning and unique characteristics.
In Native American and indigenous cultures, in particular, spirit animals serve an important function and are considered sacred.
Like spirit animals, totem animals are invoked to help protect their community and are symbolic representations of a spirit guide.
Native Americans formed clans many years ago, in which ancestors used a totem animal to represent their group, invoking a specific animal, based on its special traits, to ensure the safety and protection of their community.
Another term similar to spirit animals is power animals, which is spiritual energy from within that we invoke to help us in specific situations or circumstances.
Conversely, a spirit animal is invoked when we need guidance, support and strength for a specific reason.
How to find your spirit animal
Spirit animals are our personal animal guides to living an enlightened life and discovering the answers to life’s big questions within ourselves. If you come across an animal often, it may be a sign that it is your spirit animal.
Be very observant if you suddenly start seeing an animal in your dreams or in reality, as this is a sign that a cosmic shift is waiting to happen in your life. You may also encounter your spirit animal while meditating, seeing it over and over again in certain products, or having a psychic attraction to them.
Another important fact about spirit animals is that you cannot choose yours. Spirit animals will present themselves to you at the perfect time. However, just because you don’t meet your spirit animal doesn’t mean it’s not there. You can feel a strong connection to any animal based on its traits, your appreciation for the animal, or finding common qualities in yourself.
You can also take various online tests to determine your spirit animal. In addition, you may feel a strong connection to certain animals in the Native American zodiac, as well as Western astrology.
Spiritual animals and the zodiac
Depending on when you were born, your birthday spirit is based on your zodiac sign. Some zodiac signs (such as Gemini, Virgo, Libra and Aquarius) do not have animals as a zodiac symbol; however, other animals represent the traits of these four zodiac signs:
Gemini: Phoenix (twins)
Virgo: Fox (Maiden)
Libra: Swan (Scales)
Capricorn: Sea Goat
Aquarius: Spider (Water-bearer)
What are the 12 spirit animals?
In Native American astrology, a specific animal is assigned based on the date or period of birth. The birth totems below are assigned in this manner and are nearly identical to the dates in Western astrology. (Note that these dates are for the Northern Hemisphere only, and differ if you live in the Southern Hemisphere):
Otter: January 20 – February 18
Wolf: February 19 – March 20
Hawk: March 21 – April 19
Beaver: April 20 – May 20
Deer: May 21 – June 20
Woodpecker: June 21 – July 21
Salmon: July 22 – August 22
Bear: August 23 – September 22
Raven: September 23rd – October 22nd
Snake: October 23 – November 21
Owl: November 22 – December 21
Snow Goose: December 22 – January 19
List of spiritual animals and their meanings:
Caimans are patient creatures, lying in wait to close their jaws on their prey. But they are also quite strong and agile animals. An alligator spirit symbolizes protection and bravery, but it is also an encouragement to seek knowledge and realize what you really want out of life.
We may think that wolves are solitary, but these animals are very social, intelligent and loyal to their pack. They are a symbol of spirituality, instinct and freedom. A wolf spirit animal guides you to take a closer look at someone in your life who may be manipulating you, teaches you self-control and helps you to deepen your intuition.
Bears are not the aggressive creatures many say they are; rather, they are nurturing and gentle. Considered one of the most powerful spirit animals, if you have come across one and have a bear as a spirit animal, it is reaffirming the courage you have within you. Remember to stand firm and carry on in the face of adversity.
Ants are very goal-oriented and work well in groups. If you find that this tiny but powerful insect is your spirit animal, it could be a sign that you love teamwork and should always be persistent in everything you do.
Bees are all about productivity and hard work to serve their queen. If a bee is your spirit, pay attention to how hard you work, both in your personal life and at work. This guardian spirit helps you to call attention to whether you’ve exhausted yourself or been negligent. It is also a reminder to “stop and smell the roses,” as bees are wont to do.
Despite hanging upside down in caves, bats are quite hardy animals that use echolocation and their sensitive ears to communicate. If you have a bat as a spirit animal, it is a sign of a major change in the future; they are associated with observation and illusion, and help people realize their natural intuition.
Butterflies are one of the most beautiful insects. They grow from a small, hungry caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly. Their growth process is spiritually symbolic and meaningful because it shows that change can be good for anyone. If you discover that a butterfly is your spirit, it is time to realize that you are evolving and need to transform parts of your life.
Our favorite furry friends don’t just lie around in the sunlight or stalk their prey; in fact, cats are known for their curiosity, adventure and independent nature. If you keep seeing a cat or have a cat as your spirit animal, it means you need to take action, or it’s a negative warning from the future.
Cheetahs are the fastest land animal in the world, running at speeds of up to 80 MPH! They are a symbol of focus, intensity, intelligence and fast action. Having this animal as a spirit guide is a push for you to stick to the goals you have set for yourself and achieve them.
Coyotes are said to have a paradoxical nature; although they are tricksters and love to play games, they know when it’s time to do business. If a coyote is your spirit animal, this could imply that you need to take a step back, relax and not take life too seriously.
Unfortunately, many are superstitious about crows; however, these birds are not a bad omen if you see them in the wild. The crow symbolizes transformation, intelligence and wisdom, and they are a warning against people trying to use you; as a spirit animal, they also mean that you are now wise enough to overcome something.
Dolphins are majestic and familiar; they are the dogs of the sea because of their playful and intuitive nature. If you discover that a dolphin is your spirit animal, you should seek peace in your own life and in the lives of those around you.
Dogs are known to be loyal and devoted companions, and many believe that their souls join their owners in heaven. Therefore, having one as your spirit animal is a warning to be on the lookout for hidden issues that you have not yet come to know; it is also a reminder to possess a high level of loyalty to the people in your life, just as the animal does.
Deer are incredibly gentle and graceful animals that we often see grazing in meadows and protecting their young. To see a deer in person or in a dream means that you should have that same compassionate temperament not only with others, but with yourself.
Doves are a symbol of peace and were often used as messengers. The appearance of one in your life is a sign that you may be feeling restless and need to seek harmony in all aspects of life. Doves also convey the message that you may be looking for a place to call home.
Eagles are the messengers and patrollers of the skies; their keen vision allows them to see the world from a broader perspective. These animals symbolize the need to look at every detail of a situation you face, and think about these situations on a larger scale.
Not only do elephants not forget, they are highly intelligent mammals that symbolize honor, royalty, strength and power. An elephant as your spirit animal means that you should connect with your loved ones and yourself, but also show up when you need inspiration to move forward.
Foxes are also known to be little tricksters, but this doesn’t mean they are naïve to the world around them. If you have a fox as a spirit animal, you may need to think on your feet and develop a keen sense of adaptability.
We often see frogs next to bodies of water, and they symbolize cleansing, rebirth and peace. When a frog seems to be attracted to you, or vice versa, it is reminding you of the importance of staying strong emotionally and mentally, and healing past traumas. A frog will also appear when you are going through a transformation.
Despite their bad reputation for being sullen and mean, geese symbolize wisdom, courage and reliability. Seeing a goose or having this creature as your spirit animal is a good lesson in showing your creativity. A goose also guides you to focus on welcoming a good opportunity in the future.
These powerful birds have long been used as messengers, and are associated with strength, leadership, protection and healing. As a spirit animal, a falcon guides you on the right path where you listen to your intuition and can see a troubling situation in a new light.
Horses are the most resilient and persistent animals; they are noble and highly motivated. Having a horse as a spirit animal means that you must harness your strength and abilities to fight whatever you are up against.
Hummingbirds beat their wings more than 4,000 times per minute. But having a hummingbird as a spirit animal is telling you to be more self-reliant, to spend time doing things you love, to learn from your past mistakes and to pursue the dreams you want most in life.
As the third largest feline in the world, jaguars are ready at a moment’s notice and quickly spring into action against their prey. These strong animals are symbols of speed, grace and knowledge. And having a jaguar spirit animal guides you toward discovering your inner power, prompting you to welcome change and enhance your psychic abilities.
Ladybugs are notable for the black spots on their red shell, and are often used to make wishes. These insects are a symbol of luck and love, and, as spirit guides, they help you to let go of the past that is holding you back, that love is in your future or that you need to enjoy the moment.
Mice symbolize modesty, innocence, sympathy and secrecy, but these little rodents have an important purpose in your life as a spiritual guide. They bring the message of urgency, wishing you to change your bad behavior and have compassion. A mouse will also appear to bring the message of abundance.
Monkeys are known for their curiosity, cunning and for being tricksters who play practical jokes. But they also symbolize confidence, joy and creativity. Therefore, a monkey spirit is sending a message to invite fun and excitement into your life, as well as getting your life on the right track.
Lions are incredibly brave animals and are the kings of the jungle. They know how to stay focused and can quickly adapt their senses to attack any situation head on. If you discover a lion as your spirit animal, it’s a reminder that you can do anything, as long as you stay focused and keep your eyes on the prize.
Owls are nocturnal birds with large eyes, often associated with wisdom. But they also symbolize freedom, protection and stealth, so when you see an owl or have an owl spirit animal, expect guidance in realizing your “higher self,” seeing things that are currently hidden and, above all, staying true to who you are.
Pandas are most recognizable by their black eye patches and their curiosity about their surroundings. Symbolic of balance, solitude and willpower, pandas guide us to our foundations that keep us safe, as well as help us realize that we should show gratitude for what we have.
Black panthers, in particular, are known for being active, hiding in the shadows and living a solitary life. A panther spirit guides you to seek strength within and overcome the darkness, and will appear when you ask for some kind of protection.
Peacocks know how to turn heads and be the center of attention, and for good reason. They are style and grace, and they honor self-love. If you discover a peacock as your spirit animal, they are reminding you to be confident in yourself and to always stay true to who you are and what you stand for.
Rabbits can be very shy when encountered; however, this does not mean that their shy traits mean less, as they represent abundance and creativity. The spiritual meaning of the rabbit is usually that now is the time to come out of your burrow and express your creativity.
Raccoons are not just the animals that hide in our garbage cans or trees; they are actually quite intelligent and nurturing, and lead a solitary life. Seeing a raccoon is a message to be true to yourself, learn to adapt to change and let go of what’s holding you back.
Rats are associated with strength, kindness and intelligence, despite their negative associations with dirt and disease. In fact, having a rat as a spirit guide is associated with professional success, with pushing yourself to be productive and/or taking a step back, and with warning you when a situation is going downhill fast.
While squirrels certainly make us laugh as they jump into trees and chase each other, these little mammals are symbols of hard work, ingenuity and balance. Having a squirrel as your spirit animal is meant to encourage and motivate you, both for the future and to have a little more joy in life.
Although many associate the snake with deception since the beginning of mankind (as in the Garden of Eden), this reptile is associated with wisdom, power and transformation. Snakes as a spirit animal, bring a sense of focus to move forward in life, let go of the past to grow, and can even provide a spiritual awakening with the chakras.
Spiders may not be everyone’s favorite insect, but they have proven time and time again how valuable they are. Their patience and abilities demonstrate how and why we need them. If you find that a spider is your spirit, be patient in your daily life and see how many opportunities come your way.
More than wool producers, sheep are symbols of humility, courage and peace. You will not wait for their appearance as a guide, and they will help you to be more vulnerable in your relationships, bring out your soft side and show more compassion towards others.
Tigers are fearless hunters who rely on their instincts for survival. These symbols of passion and pride appear in your life when you need guidance related to curiosity and fighting the good fight. This spirit teaches patience and planning, and keeping spontaneity in check.
Swans are symbols of grace, beauty, love and elegance, and it is likely that we have made the same associations when watching them glide across the water. A swan as a spirit guide can serve as a sign that your true love is somewhere nearby, that you need to take your dreams seriously, or that you are experiencing grief.
Turtles are not as slow as they look. With grace and great agility, they move quickly through the water while carrying a heavy shell. If you have a turtle as a spirit animal, no matter how heavy your luggage, you will reach the end of the race at your own pace.
Wasps are insects that most people are afraid of and shy away from because of their aggressive nature and painful sting. But this spirit animal is powerful, and is a symbol of creativity and determination. They also bring a message about the need to clear clutter from our spaces, focus on our goals and protect ourselves from getting caught up in failure.
The blue whale, in particular, is the largest animal that has ever existed, and can reach more than 30 meters. This beautiful marine mammal is a symbol of courage, strength and power, and its message is the same as that of the ocean: they encourage you to dig deep and discover who you are, to contemplate your place in the world and help you find your sense of self and purpose.
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- The Wolf. Spiritual MeaningThe wolf is a fascinating animal, loved by many, feared by others, it is part of the folklore and mythology of different cultures throughout history and all over the world. In this article we will tell you in depth the meaning attributed to the wolf, its symbolism and its appearance in mythology. What is the … Read more
- The Lion What is its spiritual significance?Humankind has a long history of relationship with lions. Since ancient times, lion deities have been revered in mythology and legend. They have also been feared as monsters and strange hybrid creatures that often symbolize humanity’s greatest or worst attributes. From Mesopotamia to medieval Europe, the lion plays an important role in folklore and religion. … Read more
- The Cat. Spiritual Meaning and MythologyCats are the great protagonists of the Internet and have coexisted with humans for thousands of years. These mysterious animals have been the object of adoration in different cultures and a symbol of bad omen for others. In this article we are going to tell you what is the meaning associated with the cat, its … Read more
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