Dogs have one of the best totems or spirit guides because they are well attuned to the nature of humans and understand the best ways to guide them.
The Dog is a totem of faith, reliability and mentoring. Its basic instinct is to serve a master, and even though it is often mistreated, it always answers with love.
The Dog's heart is filled with compassion, and it is willing to overlook human weakness. The Dog can help bring these qualities to life in a person. Dog is a symbol of friendship and the unconditional ability to love and accept. They serve selflessly never asking for their service to be praised. Their sense of spirit and the ability to love even when abused is incredible. It also carries the energy of forgiveness. People with Dog totems would do well in service oriented jobs.
The Dog teaches us to examine one's loyalty toward oneself and others, and if a Dog has arrived in your life it is a question about whether you are truly giving support. Domesticated Dogs are faithful companions to humans and enjoys being useful by serving human friends.
They teach us about mentoring, that is being the person who believes in us more that we believe in ourselves. The Dog is the guardian of its master and willing to do anything for him, possibly even follow him into death. They are able to sniff out dangerous situations accurately and guide us into safety. Their acute hearing and keen sight forewarned their masters of impending danger.
Dogs are intelligent and sensitive. Psychic gifts have long been are associated with the Dog because of their ability to detect subtle energy frequencies often unknown to mankind. If a Dog suddenly appears in your life, pay attention to your immediate surroundings and let the Dog guide your footsteps.
Traditionally, the Dog is also guardian of secret areas and ancient knowledge.
A short-list of Dog meaning includes symbolic attributes like: Fidelity, Loyalty, Assistance, Intelligence, Obedience, Protection, Community, Cooperation, Resourcefulness, Communication
The theme of communication becomes heightened when we peer into histories and discover dog meaning and symbolism is connected to the metaphysical realms. The dog has long been considered a liaison between the physical and non-physical dimensions. Ancient Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Celtic and beyond have all prescribed the dog as a sacred guardian of the Otherworlds - those realms outside our daily/mundane experience. If you hear of dogs being symbols of death - this is the connection: Dogs are the guardians of ephemeral domains, and can even serve as spirit guides in non-physical journeys.
Consider Anubis, the Egyptian god whose charge is to insure safe transitions from common reality (physical life on Earth) into the Afterlife experience. With the head of a jackal (of canine ilk), Anubis dons the super-powerful sensory perception of the dog. Further, that dog connection represents the epitome of protection, guidance, loyalty and adherence to the flow of unseen spiritual energy. To be sure, safe passage from "life" to Afterlife will be seen to success under the governance of the dog/jackal-headed Anubis. In this ancient light, we get distinct impressions of: Security, Guardianship, Protection.
Greeks – Romans
The Greeks symbolized the dog as Cerberus, the three-headed dog who guards the gates of Hades...again, a guardian. Dogs are sacred to Hecate, the Greek-Roman overseer of lots of things - but surely a matron bound to protect that which is misunderstood. It seems where there is senseless lashing out against that which is misunderstood, Hecate comes ferociously in justification - her dogs baying with equal verve at her side. Death, darkness, wild wandering, lunar moodiness, midnight journeying...Hecate defends the soul's right to wander in these little-known, oft-misunderstood alleyways. With her highly perceptive hounds guiding the way (and protecting the body as the spirit wanders), astral travel becomes eons easier.
Interestingly, Hecate and her hounds will also speak for (and protect) those who cannot do so for themselves. Newborns. Hecate and her dogs represent an "Alliance for Defense and Protection" to those who cannot defend themselves: Babies, Children, the Meek, the Mild, the Mad and the unjustly Maligned.
In Celtic symbolism, dogs are a representation of heroism. They embody heart-pounding attributes such as: Courage, Persistence, Virility. This, in large part is due to a Celtic dog's role in hunting. Dogs were even trained by the ancient Celts to assist in battle. So here we see that same thread of defense, protection and action for the good of the clan. An interesting paradox: Celtic dogs are also symbolic of healing. They are often associated with Nodens, a Celtic god of nutritive waters, hunting and healing (water is often synonymous with healing in Celtic wisdom). Dogs have also been portrayed with Sucellus, the Celtic god of protection and provision (from an agricultural view).
Native Americans Indians
Native American Indian tribes have long depended upon the dog for their helpful guidance They are able to sniff out dangerous situations accurately and guide us into safety. and assistance in everyday chores. Before horses, there were dogs and they were trained to help the tribe in agricultural efficiency as well as hunting. In Native American wisdom, dogs convey symbolism of: Assistance, Fidelity, Community, Protection, Friendship and Communication.
Spaniards, the term "sky dogs" was dubbed for horses because they were as helpful as their canine allies.
In Chinese symbolism, dogs are also considered a harbinger of friendship. The legendary Fu Dog is also a guardian of sacred spaces and embodies concepts of protection too. Dogs are considered very auspicious. In Asian wisdom dogs are symbols of: Good Luck, Loyalty, Obedience and Prosperity.
In India the dog was a symbol of all caste systems and to the early Christians, dog was a watchful guardian and even a symbol for a priest (guardian of his flock).
Dogs in Alchemy
One of the symbolic associations with dogs is through the field of Alchemy. The dog (and sometimes wolves) is associated with Mercury in alchemical wisdom. Why? Because Mercury is easily fused with other metals. This hints to amicable bonds (friendship) and ties that bind with ease. Mercurial dogs are also symbolic of: Transition, Intelligence, and easy flow through the processes of transmutation.
Dogs in Tarot
The symbol of the dog in art and mythology dates back for centuries. Historically, they have been symbols of loyalty, faithfulness and protection. They are also considered to be great warriors and can be a symbol of an expert hunter. In the middle ages, dogs were associated to the priesthood due to the priests’ vigilance in protecting people from the influence of the devil.
In many ancient cultures, the dog was associated to death. Dogs were believed to have the capacity to look into the spirit realm, see ghosts, and warn their masters of invisible dangers. In Greek mythology, Cerberus, the three headed dog, guarded and protected the gates of the dead. He served as a guide for those who crossed over.
When it comes to tarot reading, the symbol of the dog is perceived as a sign of faithfulness, devotion and protection. He can appear in tarot cards that depict the family and/or home. In this regard, he is a symbol of fidelity, loyalty and watchfulness. He can also represent our loyal friends, partners, and intimate relationships. He can represent home life or domestication.
The two most significant cards that depict the image of the Dog is the Fool tarot card and the Moon tarot card. In tarot reading, the Fool’s dog represents a need for caution. He is there to remind the Fool to not become careless or irresponsible. Psychologically, the image of the Dog can represent the voice of reason.
The Moon Tarot card, however, depicts both a dog and a wolf. Symbolically, this represents two opposites: the wolf represents the more primitive parts of our psyche while the dog represents the rational. The Moon’s message reminds us that we must be conscious of both parts of ourselves. If not, we are vulnerable to inner conflict or a lack of balance.
Panjemick wrote 989 Days Ago (positive)1Remember me telling you about that dream I had last night about the wolf like creature intwined in the tree? The celtic symbol looks eerily close to that design! How auspicious!1 point