Dream interpretation, in its current stage, is still a subjective art that baffles many researchers. Much like the art of trying to interpret if your dog’s stares from across the room are more of a loving gaze, a judgement of your new outfit, or if they’re just staring at that ghost behind you. While it’s hard to know exactly what these brain waves mean during our REM sleep, studies and research have brought us closer to formulating a hypothesis. It’s believed that, at the very least, dreaming about dogs (and dreams in general) can tell us a lot about a person’s character, behavior, and thoughts.
If you had a dream with dogs recently, we know you want to just get to the good stuff without scrolling for all eternity, so make sure to check out the bottom of the article for additional important details that may help you more accurately interpret your dream. Let’s dig into meanings!
*Music from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory begins to play*
“Come with meee, and you’ll seee, a world of pure imagination…”
Types of Dogs In Your Canine Dreams & Their Interpretations
A dog happily wagging its tail and running to greet you may symbolize excitement and happiness in your life. It could indicate you’re on the right track. Keep doing awesome things, you awesome person!
He is the night! Dreaming of black dogs could mean you have feelings of frustration, loss, or depression. A happy black dog may mean you’re gaining self confidence and inner peace after a dark period. An aggressive black dog is often thought of as a bad omen, or you may be feeling betrayed by someone. If you happen to just own a black dog who you were dreaming about, please disregard this interpretation. Your pup is just a good boy or girl, not a bad omen.
White dogs come with an interpretation of peace, love, loyalty, happiness, and a reminder that you have supportive, protective people in your life. That sounds nice! Can we be friends? If you actually have a white dog, sorry about all your black clothing.
Brown dogs in dreams can indicate overall happiness and simplicity in life. You’re content with your friendships and relationships. (Make sure this dream dog didn’t just roll in mud to disguise itself, though! That may need an entirely different interpretation!)
An injured dog often symbolizes sadness in your life, but also your empathy toward others. You may be struggling to help someone in your real life who is having a hard time.
A bling dog in your dream is said to be a symbol of guidance and protection.
Are you feeling emotionally exhausted in life, maybe feeling a lack of self-confidence and beating yourself up about it? A lost dog in your dream could be trying highlight this, and signaling it’s time to make some changes. We all have metaphorically lost dogs from time to time. Keep searching! He’s probably off chasing a cats & squirrels.
A wild dog showing up in your dream may be pointing toward your desires for freedom or self expression. You wanna run into the woods and howl at the moon? You do you, internet friend! Howl at that moon like no one’s watching (but beware, because someone’s definitely watching. And recording!).
Dreams of dead dogs often occur during difficult times in life. You may have just lost someone close to you, lost a friendship, job, or something important to you. Sending hugs your way ASAP!
Feel free to be just as excited by dream puppies as real life ones. Dreaming of puppies can often be a sign of new beginnings or opportunities. They could also indicate feelings of wanting or needing to protect/nurture those in your life.
Dreaming about dogs fighting could be an indication of conflict in your life. Did you just have a fight with someone important in your life? Are you in a fight with your own dog and not speaking because they attacked a small rodent yesterday and made you pry its body out of their jaws? Been there!
You may be trying to interpret your real life inside your dream. Did something puzzling or shocking happen in your life? You may be trying to “digest” what all of it means.
Related Article: Do Our Dogs Really Have Dreams When They Sleep?
This could be a sign that you’re lacking ambition in life, or a certain area of your life has become stagnant. Maybe it’s time to jump on a dating app or start job hunting.
Interactions With Dogs In Your Dreams & Their Interpretations
A Dog Chasing You
It means you’d better run! Juuust kidding. Dreaming about dogs chasing you could indicate that you’re running away from something important in your life. You may be running from a responsibility, situation, or a person that’s causing you anxiety.
A Dog Biting Or Attacking You
A dog biting you in your dream (or nightmare!) could symbolize disloyalty, betrayal, being victimized, or lacking balance in your real life. Did you just have a fight with someone significant to you? You can tell us who it is. We just wanna have a chat.
A Dog Barking At You
A happily barking dog could be encouraging, meaning that things are going well in your social or romantic life. Ooh la la! An angrily barking dog, on the other hand, may be a warning that you are too controlling of others in your social circles or relationship. Been a little snippy lately? This may be an indicator.
Stepping In Dog Poop
Stepping in dog poop may symbolize that you’re making careless decisions, you’ve lost control of a situation, or you may have an obstacle to overcome. Your new obstacle is getting home in your dream without people wondering if you pooped your pants when they smell you – talk about a bad dream!
Watching A Dog Chase Its Tail
Does it feel like you’re getting nowhere in life or a certain situation? Maybe there’s something you can’t find the answer to and you keep “chasing your own tail” trying to figure it out. This may be your reason for watching a dog chase its own tail in your dream.
A Dog Guarding Gates Or An Entrance
If you see a guard dog who isn’t allowing you to move past it in a dream, this may be a warning. It may symbolize that you need to take caution moving forward in a certain situation, (like perhaps you should rethink whether putting your life savings in Dogecoin is a wise choice).
Getting A New Dog
Dreaming about getting a new dog could mean that you’re lonely or need to bring new friendships or a relationship into your life (or just a new pup!).
What Does It Mean To Dream About Animals In General?
Now that we’ve gone over really specific dog dream scenarios, let’s look at some more general human dream meanings. Dreams of animals in general are said to symbolize your basic feelings, behaviors, and instincts that are often hidden in your subconscious mind.
These animal dreams typically deal with strong suppressed emotions and tend to reveal a shadow side of a person’s everyday self, whether it be a nice dream or a nightmare. This can be true of a lot of symbols within dreams.
What Dreaming About Dogs Means For You
It’s important to realize that dog dreams can mean different things to different people. The meaning can change drastically when it comes to a person’s culture, religious background, and emotional experiences from interactions with dogs in real life.
For example, are you living in a country where dogs are thought of as family, or are dogs mostly wild animals and occasional threats to your community? Does your religion hold specific beliefs about animals, dogs, or dreams? What have your past interactions with dogs been like? All of these things can change the meaning of your canine dream.
According to a current dog dream research study1 at Heidelberg University, dog owners are much more likely to have positive dreams about dogs, whereas people who have had negative real life experiences with dogs are much more likely to have a negative tone to their dog dreams.
Interpreting Dogs’ Meaning In Dreams Isn’t A Science
As our lists above indicate, no matter your culture or background with animals, that there are still many interpretable similarities in dreams about dogs. Dog dreams are said to often revolve around your feelings toward friendships, loyalty, and protection.
Investigating the context of your dream, such as whether the dog was a protector or predator, can play a huge role in how you interpret your dream. This includes whether or not the dog was representing you or someone else in your life. It’s important to sniff out the entire context of these complex dreams.
1 Schredl, M., Bailer, C., Weigel, M. S., & Welt, M. S. (2020, October). Dreaming about dogs: an online survey . ResearchGate. Retrieved April 6, 2022, from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/346276671_Dreaming_about_Dogs_An_Online_Survey