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What Do Dreams About a Dog Mean?

by | Apr 20, 2024

  • Dog dream meanings are generally positive, relating to friendship and companionship.
  • Understanding your emotions when you have dreams about a dog is vital to understanding its meaning.
  • Dreaming about a dog urges us to look within ourselves regarding how we relate to others.

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Dogs have been man’s companions since time immemorial. From ancient Egypt to Nordic traditions and mythology, our furry friends have always been a big part of our lives. Dogs appearing in your dream can make you wonder if there are any significant meanings or messages behind them.

According to Lauri Loewenberg, a professional dream analyst, dreams about dogs are humans’ most common animal dreams. Loewenberg says three themes are associated with dog dreams:

  1. Relationships
  2. Friendships
  3. Loyalty

These themes are typically associated with dogs themselves. Since dream interpretation mirrors the characteristics of our dreams in our daily lives, it only makes sense that dreaming about our canine friends reflects these traits.

In this article about dog dream meaning, we’ll cover the general symbolism of dreams about a dog, talk about the most common dog dreams, and how to apply these interpretations in your waking life.

General Symbolism of Dreams About a Dog

Dogs have always been featured in traditions worldwide and throughout history. For centuries, they have been positively regarded for their friendship, loyalty, and protective traits.

Some examples of these countless traditions include Anubis in ancient Egypt, dogs accompanying Odin, the Allfather in Nordic tradition, the 3-headed hound guarding the gates of the underworld, the dog as a friendly and loyal spirit animal in Native American beliefs, and many more.

When we interpret our dreams about dogs, we need to mirror the virtues of this animal, and there, we can find our answers.

Let’s look at the general symbolism of dog dreams based on their known virtues:

Friendship and Companionship

Dogs generally symbolize friendship and companionship. When you dream about them, it may be time to look at the friendships and relationships you have in your life. Are you longing to have someone? Or you’re having a strained relationship with the ones you have.

It’s essential to understand how your dream made you feel. The emotions in your dream reflect the very meaning behind it. It could reflect the strain in your real-life friendships and relationships if you felt sad in your dream. If you felt good in your dream, it may reflect the positive relationships you have in life.

It could also mean that you are longing for companionship or feel like something’s wrong with you, and you can’t seem to accept or acknowledge it. Look at your current relationships to help you understand what your dog’s dream could be telling you.

Protection and Loyalty

Dogs are incredibly protective and loyal to their pet parents. Your dream could mean that someone is protecting you or that you are protecting yourself. It also signifies loyalty or disloyalty in your relationships.

This can also signify something negative in your dream. Being overprotective can limit the growth of the people you’re trying to protect, or it could also be that someone overbearing in your life is stifling your personal development.

Dog dreams could also mean that being too loyal to someone, your job, or your situation can prevent you from choosing things and people who may be better for you. So, try to watch out for their negative traits in your life.


You may not realize it, but dogs can help you heal emotionally. They can teach you the meaning of loyalty and selfless love. They guide you to create nurturing bonds with the people in your life and can help mend broken relationships. Dogs also help you create a better connection with the universe and help mend heartaches, betrayals, and emotional pains caused by other people.

Heightened Intuition

It is commonly known that dogs have heightened senses. In terms of their sense of smell, they have 300 million scent receptors compared to only 6 million in humans, and they can hear higher frequencies, which means they are more perceptive to their environment.

Dogs are also known to detect emotion, illness, environmental events like weather changes, and physiological changes in humans.

Therefore, dreaming about dogs also symbolizes heightened intuition. It could mean you need to listen to your intuition more when making decisions or that you need to use your instincts when dealing with yourself and other people in your life.

While these are the general symbolism of dog dreams, genuine interpretation relies on you. Dog in dream meanings are always subjective, depending on what is going on in your waking life. However, you can use their general interpretations as the basis for your subjective understanding of your dreams.

Common Dreams About Dogs

This section will cover the most common dreams about dogs and their possible interpretations. Remember that dream interpretation depends on the details of your dream, such as the dog’s behavior, color, and breed, as well as the emotions evoked in the dream.

dog dream meaning

Here are the most common dreams about dogs:

1. A Barking Dog

A dog may bark because he sees a stranger or warns you of something. Similarly, a dog barking in your dream could signify impending danger. Something in your life might need your attention, but you’re ignoring it, so the dog barking represents a nudge that you should pay attention to something or someone in your life that may bring you trouble or danger.

It could also mean you’re annoying the people around you. A dog that barks nonstop is irritating, so your dream could also have this meaning.

2. A Running Dog

A running dog represents freedom. Maybe you’re stuck at a dead-end job or in a toxic relationship. The dog running in your dream could signify your desire to break free and have freedom.

3. A Happy Dog

If you see a happy dog in your dream, it is believed to be a sign of recovery and healing. As mentioned earlier, dreaming of dogs can symbolize healing in your life. If you’ve gone through a breakup, you’ve been depressed, or you lost someone, a happy dog represents your healing and happiness.

4. An Angry Dog

An angry dog in your dream could signify your anger in real life. You may be angry at a coworker, a family member, or yourself. It also represents aggression, so someone in your life may be hostile towards you, and your fear or anxiety appears in your dreams, like an angry dog.

5. A Dog Attacking You

Dreaming of a dog attacking you could represent people who may be ruining your relationship or your life in general. You feel threatened, and dreaming of an attacking dog in your dream represents this feeling of being attacked by someone you’re supposed to trust.

It could also signify an impending betrayal. Since a dog is supposed to be your friend, a dog that attacks you can represent a betrayal from someone you trust.

6. A Dog Biting You

A dog biting you in your dream signifies your feeling of being overwhelmed in life. You may have a desire to escape pressure from work or your family. It could also indicate that you’ve hurt someone close to you or that this person is about to hurt you in your waking life.

7. A Dead Dog

A dead dog may seem scary to see in your dream, but it doesn’t mean someone will die in real life. Since dogs represent relationships and companionship, it could mean you’ve recently had or are about to lose a friend or romantic partner. And thus, your friendship or relationship is dead.

However, it could also mean transformation. Death in dreams doesn’t have a literal meaning, but it symbolizes the end of a cycle in your life. The good news is that it also represents transformation and new beginnings.

8. A Dying or Injured Dog

You may feel bad when you see a dying dog in your dream, but this doesn’t mean someone will be sick or die in your life soon. It simply means you feel an intense emotion in your waking life, which overflows into your dreams. You feel bad and dread the feeling of something that will end soon.

Maybe your child is about to go to college, or you just resigned from work and are feeling emotional about leaving, and so on. This represents the sadness you may be feeling or about to feel when something in your life is about to end.

9. A Dog Chasing Its Tail

Your dream of a dog chasing its tail may represent your behavior and actions. You may have been working hard at a dead-end job without any promotion or improvement. Or you’re in a relationship that doesn’t move forward. Or you have a business that’s constantly breaking even.

It may be a sign that you should stop and evaluate whether you should continue what you’ve been doing or stop and move on.

10. A Dog Sleeping

A dog sleeping represents delays in your life. Maybe you’re in a relationship and about to get married or have children, but something doesn’t go according to plan. Or you’ve been planning to move to another city or get a new job, but detours are happening. It doesn’t mean you won’t get to where you are going, but it does signify that it won’t be a fast transition.

11. A Puppy

A puppy in your dream signifies your nurturing and playful side. It could mean you’ve been busy at work and must remember to care for yourself or your family. It could also mean you are looking for someone to care for you or missing your playful side.

12. A Pack of Dogs

A pack of dogs in your dream could signify your belonging to a group. Maybe you’ve been out of touch with your family and friends and long to be with them. It could also be a sign that you’ve been feeling lonely, so you want to be with people who think you belong and are accepted.

13. A Tied Up Dog

A tied-up dog could mean you feel restricted in your life. You may be in a relationship where your desires are not honored. Maybe your partner, family, or friends are preventing you from moving to a new country, entering a new relationship, or going after your dream career. It may be time for you to evaluate whether or not you should listen and obey these people or remove the chains holding you back.

14. A Two-Headed Dog

A two-headed dog in a dream is believed to signify your heightened awareness of your environment. Things may have been changing around you, and you need to be more aware of what’s happening, such as workplace or family changes. It could also mean you need help to understand your current situation.

15. Buying a Dog

Buying a dog in your dream means you long for a friend or companion, but you think you won’t be able to find one if they don’t get things in return. And so you may want to “buy” that person by treating them to dinner, buying them things, or going the extra mile to be in their graces. It may be a sign that you need to stop doing these things.

16. Being Given a Dog

Being given a dog by someone means your friendship is healthy since the people in your life are giving you loyalty and protection. It could also signify that people are looking out for you.

17. Running Over a Dog

Running over a dog in a dream could mean you did something wrong and are about to lose a relationship. Or someone may have done you wrong, and you want to run them over in real life. You’re feeling anger but can’t express it in real life, so you dream about doing it to a friend or loved one.

18. Taking the Dog for a Walk

Dreaming about taking your dog for a walk is believed to reflect success, accomplishment, and productivity. Maybe you’re about to experience success, or you’ve been doing well at work. You may also feel like things have been a walk in the park for you at home or work.

19. Rubbing the Belly of a Dog

Rubbing a dog’s belly in your dream means you have trusted relationships. You feel safe, comforted, protected, and happy with your friends and loved ones. It’s a general feeling of being satisfied with your relationships.

20. Finding a Dog

Finding a dog in your dream signifies your longing for companionship or someone who will be there for you to give you comfort or protection. Maybe you’ve lost a significant person in your life or were neglected growing up, and you desire to find someone who will be there for you.

21. Killing a Dog

Interpreting a dream about killing a dog depends on how you felt when the dog was dead. If you feel safe, it probably means someone is protecting you and will do everything possible to ensure your safety. However, if you were terrified when you killed the dog, it could mean that you’re deciding to cut ties with a loved one. This decision may not be what you want, but what is needed for your mental health and happiness.

22. A Dog from Your Childhood

If you dream about a dog from childhood, it could mean you’re missing something from the past. You may be longing for something you lost or a time when you felt safe and protected.

23. Types of Dogs

The type of dog in your dream can also have significant interpretations based on the breed’s characteristics. Here are some of the most common:

German Shepherd

German shepherds are known to be protective dogs, so dreaming about them could mean someone in your life who is protecting you or that you long for someone to protect you in real life.


Dreaming of a dachshund could mean you’re looking for the courage to do something in your waking life. These dogs are known to be courageous and loyal and make good watchdogs.


A rottweiler is a protective dog, and dreaming about it could mean that you must protect yourself before doing the same for others.

Siberian Husky

A Siberian husky is friendly and mischievous, and dreaming about this intelligent dog could mean you’re looking for more fun and playfulness in your life.


A bulldog is defined as hard on the outside and soft on the inside. If you dream about it, it could mean you’re tired of being strong in front of people, and all you want is to find comfort and understanding. You may want to be vulnerable, but people perceive you as strong, so they might feel you don’t need help. It may be time to open yourself up to the people around you.


A pug is playful and good-natured but can also be lazy and passive. Dreaming about it could mean you must get up and be more active, go outside, be around people, and interact more.


Sheepdogs are associated with responsibility. Dreaming about this dog could mean you lack responsibility or be a reminder to be more responsible with your words and actions in real life.

Golden Retriever

Golden retrievers are known for strong bonds with their pet parents or family. Dreaming about a golden retriever could mean you’re missing your own family, you long to be with them, or you want to have the feeling of being around people who love you.

Yorkshire Terrier

A Yorkshire terrier in real life is known to be loud, bossy, and vocal. It’s also fiery and energetic. Dreaming about one could signify your lack of assertion, so it might be a dream that encourages you to speak up and be more vocal about your own needs and wants.

Border Collie

A border collie is known to be energetic and always ready to go. Dreaming about one could signify your desire to engage in more fun activities or to go after your dreams. This could be traveling in Europe, going after your dream job, and other goals you may have been putting on hold.

24. Colors of Dogs

Aside from the specific type of dog, a dog’s color may also mean something significant in your dream. Here are the most common ones:


Dreaming of a white dog is said to be a good omen. It is said to signify good intentions among the people around you.


A black dog in your dream is believed to reflect your dark personality. It could mean you must be mindful of how you act and treat others.


A brown dog in your dream is believed to be a reminder of your good characteristics. It may be a sign encouraging you to take a deeper look within yourself and do more things that make you a good person.

There you have it, the most common dreams about dogs and their possible meanings. Use these interpretations as the foundation of your understanding of your dreams about your furry friends. They are not always the correct answer to your dreams’ significance, but you can use them as a basis to understand their possible meanings.

Word of Advice

Rubin Naiman, PhD, is a dream expert and psychologist who says that dream interpretation is about decoding the symbols in the dream and understanding the feelings we experience when dreaming.

Once we decode these emotions, we can get a clearer picture of the potential message in our dreams. Naiman states that once we decode our dreams, they enlighten us and psychologically expand our awareness of our waking life. Once this happens, consciousness expansion occurs.

So when you dream about dogs, it is sometimes about something other than the type of dog, the color of its fur, or what it’s doing. According to Naiman, it’s about how the dream made us feel.

Seeing a dog and feeling sad or scared could mean that something negative is happening or about to happen in our waking life. Feeling happy and excited could mean that your dream about a dog signifies a positive experience in real life.

The details of the dream, such as what we talk about in the general symbolism and the shared dreams of dogs, are merely sidenotes to genuine dream interpretation.

When trying to decode your dreams about dogs, try to remember the details. But most importantly, remember how you felt. Naiman says this is the key to understanding your dream’s message.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What do dogs symbolize in dreams?

Dogs symbolize friendship, loyalty, and relationships in dreams.

2. Is it good or bad to see a dog in your dream?

Whether a dog’s dream is good or bad depends on the details of the dream. Some dog dreams signify favorable omens, while others may contain negative messages.

3. What is the spiritual meaning of a dog?

The spiritual meaning of a dog reflects its virtues of protection, loyalty, and companionship.

4. Should I worry if I see a dying dog in my dream?

While seeing a dying or dead dog in your dream can be jarring, there’s no need to worry. Your real-life furry friend will not die anytime soon. It’s merely a symbol of something ending in waking life, a new beginning, or a transformation in your life.



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