Dog Symbolism & Meaning
An excellent way of honoring the Animal Spirits that enter your life is by learning more about them. When a Dog chooses to act as a spiritual guide or an aid, you can trust in it for protection, alertness, bravery, devotion and constancy. This symbolic value for Dog isn’t surprising. This creature has barked at the heels of humankind for so long that no one knows for sure when they were first domesticated. Many people believe that Dogs have souls and will reunite with their human counterparts in the afterlife. In other words, all Dogs do indeed go to heaven!
The ancient Egyptians used Dog symbolism regularly. The city of Cynopolis translates as “Dog”. In this region it was actually law that the people of the city care for all Dogs diligently. They also worshipped the Dog Star (Sirius) because its position in the sky predicted the flooding of the Nile. This marked the New Year. This predictability of the Dog spirit equated to faithfulness and also gives Dog an additional metaphysical relationship with prognostication.
It seems everywhere you looked in the ancient world, and indeed modern times, Dog spirit is there with more bark than bite. Leaders in Babylon and Assyria both have numerous Dogs mentioned in their chronicles, along with the concept that Dogs have psychic vision and see ghosts or imperceptible dangers. They use this mystical ability to protect their owners not only in this life but the next.
This ability to see-true may be why the Greeks choose a three headed Dog image (Cerberus) as the guardian of the dead. In this position the Dog spirit again acts as a guide and even becomes a obedient intermediary for human souls. This protective element parallels with the Norse Garmr, a Dog that stands at the gates of the underworld. It is said that Garmr will only howl if the end of the world is nigh. In this way we see the Dog animal spirit again as a visionary and prognosticator.
Time and time again mythology portrays the sacred Dog as being brave, powerful and vigilant. The hunter Orion of Greek mythology was always accompanied by his faithful Dog Sirius. The Goddess Artemis is also depicted with divine hunting Dogs. In South Africa we see this creature portrayed as an Ancestor spirit that gives humankind fire, and in Japan the images of Dogs often stand guard at temple doors.
With all this in mind it’s not surprising when a Dog spirit guide chooses to bless your life. They are exactly where they wish to be, close to a human heart who will cherish them. As a side note, an actual living Dog can be a Divine messenger and helpmate too. Some people believe that Angels can turn themselves into Dogs for the purpose of safeguarding a person or family and offering aid in times of trouble.
Dog Spirit Animal
When the Dog Spirit Animal chooses you, you will have a best friend in the etheric plane probably for the remainder of your years on this planet.
Dog cannot be deterred easily, and is particularly drawn to humans who show service and loyalty generously to others. This animal spirit guide also comes when a soul calls out for aid, akin to the St. Bernard arriving just in the nick of time.
If Dog spirit keeps nudging you, be aware. There may be problems afoot that you cannot immediately see. Let your Dog’s nose sniff out the problem.
Additionally, Dog spirit always reminds you to maintain your integrity and faithfulness with all the gentle souls that share your life, both human and animal. This bit of animal medicine is true for self too – you cannot be a good friend to others without having the same relationship with yourself.
As a spiritual companion Dog builds an intense sense of devotion with all your relations. Should your proverbial tribe come into times of trouble, Dog spirit will not run with his tail between his legs but stand firm by your side. Just one word of caution: if your Dog animal guide feels you abuse trust and devotion, it will nip you firmly. Heed the warning.
Dog Totem Animal
If you find yourself attracted to a Dog totem it says a lot about your ability to give and receive love. It also reflects a person who serves quietly in the backdrop, leaving others in the spotlight while you support success. From this position you can see everything that’s going on more clearly and stand watch for any trouble.
A Dog totem symbolizes the ability to devote oneself to a spiritual path or personal ethic no matter the situation. It is not surprising to find many ministers and metaphysical teachers having a Dog totem. There is no need for a leash here – the dedication is already apparent and it would take a major crisis for you to abandon your faith.
Dog as a Totem Animal also embodies the social self. People with this Animal Spirit Guide ally never stray far from their inner circle of friends and family. When life becomes harsh, a Dog totem comes close and nuzzles us with unconditional love. He will lie at your feet and keep watch until the storms pass.
When working with this totem, remember that your patience for mean people or those who willfully hurt others’ feelings will be very low. There’s a tendency toward “chewing” them out in no uncertain terms, which may be exactly what they need.
Dog Power Animal
Dog people are fiercely devoted, loving and protective. Invoke Dog as your Power Animal when you need support staying strong in your drive to serve humankind. Burnout is no fun and Dog energy teaches us that it’s OK to stop and chase a Frisbee every once in a while.
Call in Dog medicine when your social calendar gets overwhelming. It’s fine to have lots of friends in your pack and you are the kind of person everyone else wants as a companion. You always seem to know just how to welcome friends with a happiness and healing energy that feeds people to their very soul. But you cannot save everyone and your own well-being is a priority.
Dog as a Power Animal encourages us to be the most giving and altruistic as possible. In some instances this Being asks us to carry messages from the spirit world or even from the Divine, often words that lift an ailing soul and provide hope.
Listen carefully to that guidance and deliver your missive faithfully but be sure you are protected, too.
Remember, you can’t help serve when your own mind, body, and spirit is energetically depleted.
Native American Dog Symbolic Meanings
Many Native American tribes had Dog companions that acted as a guide and guard who barked out warnings. Some of its symbolism intertwines with coyote as the inventor of fire, a spirit that brings and an intermediary between the Great Spirit and humankind that is friendly and loyal.
As with most global folklore, the aid of a Dog animal spirit in Native American tradition depends heavily on this creature (in real or other forms) being properly treated. Where people took care of Dogs blessings ensued, but where people harmed or disrespected the Dog spirit, calamity follows.
Dog as a Celtic Animal Symbol
Dogs were very important to hunting in the Celtic world. As such we often see the great heroes, Gods and Goddesses being accompanied by hounds. The stories of Dogs regularly focus on them as guides to the underworld, and guardians of the crossroads where they keep a spirit safe, and guide it toward a new life. This again reflects the Dog spirit as one that’s a loyal and honorable companion
Dogs barking in your dreams indicate trouble, and may warn of betrayal from someone close to you. Single Dogs in dreams often represent the dreamer’s overall sense of loyalty and generosity in daily life. A Dog with pups refers to your ability to cultivate or nurture people and situations.
Learn more about Dog Spirit by reading Dog Dreams Meaning and Symbolism on WhatIsMySpiritAnimal.com!
Dog in Astrology & Zodiac Signs
In Asian cultures, Dogs are symbols of good luck and, of course, protection. Visit my sister site Building Beautiful Souls to read all about the personality, traits, and characteristics of the Chinese Zodiac Dog & Year of the Dog.