Dogs in Dreams: Meanings and Interpretations
Dogs in general represent loyalty and friendship but beyond that, there are many subtleties and other underlying traits that shape the details of what it represents to experience a dream with dogs.
Listed below are common ways in which dogs appear in dreams and what it means.
A stray dog that appears in a dream can denote a sense of feeling lost and uncertain. Dogs as we mentioned, represent friendship and a stray dog can represent either a friendship that has fallen astray, or even a new friendship being formed from a situation of loss or despair.
A stray that appears mangy, malnourished or unkempt can represent a loss in the persons life that has caused grief which has gone neglected. A loss of a relationship or friendship can provoke avoidance and often, the grief can make us uncomfortable to face healing or experiencing closure. So in a sense, we neglect what is needed most to remain healthy emotionally.
A stray that is wearing collar can represent a sense of ownership over another although the relationship or friendship has gone astray. For example, a possessive partnership in which one partner has pulled away, run away or ended everything can still be haunted by the desire of the other partner who is not ready to let go or give up. In this situation, it's good to ask for release from the unwanted attachment or ask for clarity so that the lingering emotional connections are able to fall away.
An aggressive dog can represent confrontation or even contempt. In relationships and friendships that challenge loyalty, aggression can cause a whole list of secondary issues which need to be addressed before anything further develops.
An aggressive dog in a dream that is well known, such as a family pet that has suddenly become dangerous can represent hostility in a valued relationship, especially with family. This can also represent business relationships as well. So be mindful of hostility that is present in a situation with someone you are close to.
An aggressive dog that charges at someone but is held back by a fence or chain can represent the desire to lash out to others, especially someone who is important to the dreamer, but is being held back by obstacles outside of their control. It speaks of the need to exercise self discipline and contain hostility in order to resolve whatever conflict has erupted.
An aggressive dog can also represent fear. As we hear, the bark is worse than the bite. A dog that is aggressive in a dream can bring our attention to a situation that is based in fear. What is the dreamer afraid of? What pending doom is lurking around the corner?
Sick or Zombie Dogs
Although it may provoke a bit of humor, it's been common for people to dream of dogs that appear diseased, sick or even zombie-like. In this situation, the dreamer needs to look inside themselves to figure out what type of situation they are in when it comes to those they have loyalty to. Are these relationships diseased? Are they co-dependent and destructive, to the point of total sabotage or abuse? Why does the dreamer feel chased or haunted by something infectious? Ideas alone can breed infection. Perhaps the dreamer is involved in infectious thought processes that provoke hostility, anger, or depression which can be a detriment to the spirit. It's a warning to pull back and create a separation for the health and well being of the entire self and life in general.
This can also be an omen. For example, depending on the realism of the dream, some dreams of a sick dog, especially if it is a dog known to the dreamer, it can be a precognitive message that the dog really is sick in reality. A vet check might be in order. Dreams such as this can also be a forecast of what the dog will soon go through. And if death is a result of the illness in the dream, it might also indicate that a death is pending for their furry friend.
A Happy Dog
A happy dog that wags its tail, has a shiny coat and appears young, agile or healthy indicates a healthy relationship and is a way to offer reassurance of something good and beautiful. Sometimes people become insecure, especially in new friendships or relationships and this can create a sense of serenity within that friendship. If this interpretation doesn't match the current state, then this can also represent something yet to come; an omen of a wonderful relationship or friendship that is about to appear.
A Pack of Dogs
Depending on the nature of the pack, whether appearing wild or domestic, it can represent a group situation such as a community, work colleagues or entire family. The nature of the pack will give simple ways to understand it. Aggressive packs that are wild and want to attack can bring the dreamer to realize that they feel under attack in their real life so they need to address it. Or, a gentle tight knit pack can represent a reassurance of loyalty that the dreamer has with family and friends.
This is where the dreamer can be even more detailed in his or her interpretation. Each breed has its own dominant and subtle traits. Each trait means something. Each type of breed means something.
For example, a toy dog can represent playfulness. Or, it can represent a mouthy vocal trait. How the dog behaves can share a lot about what it means.
Or, a working breed such as a Border Collie or Australian Shepherd can represent a work related environment. It can also represent how well people work together and what type of communication they are experiencing.
Dogs such as German Shepherds which are very well known for their ability to protect and guard can represent guardianship or policing a situation. Where is there a need for authority? Why is the dreamer being alerted to being on guard?
Or even hunting breeds such as a black lab can represent teamwork. It can also represent finding joy in work and a great system of communication.
Researching each breed will offer even more insight to the dreamer. And if the type of dog in a dream is unfamiliar, a Google image search on dog breeds can offer a reference that would be easier to identify.
Other dream interpretation articles I've written about on Knoji.com which can be accessed through my profile are: