An animal spirit guide is often called an animal totem or power animal. It is a teacher or messenger that comes to us in animal form to guide and protect us throughout life. They may offer comfort, inspiration, or messages when times are tough. They may also draw our attention to those parts of ourself that require exploration. Your spirit guide animal resonates with you and holds significance in your life. Your relationship with your guide will connect you with nature and the earth. This animal is ultimately a reflection of ourselves, who we are, and what we may become. Though most often found in the Native American or Aboriginal cultures, spirit guides are not limited to those cultures. They are present for those who seek and yearn for a deeper connection to the earth and nature.
Finding Your Animal Spirit Guide
When searching for your animal spirit guide, the first step is to respectfully ask for it to show itself. Then set the intention and look in the places your guide may allow itself to be discovered. These could include:
- Dreams – Dreaming of a certain animal often can bring important insights
- Meditation – Meditation puts us in an altered state of consciousness which can allow your spirit animal to reveal itself
- Nature – Walking outside to observe animals is a great way to find your guide because the goal is to be closer to Mother Nature
- Past Connections – Look to the past of favorite animals, pets, or one you feel drawn to without real reason
- Fears – Look at animals that both frighten and intrigue you at the same time, this may be the one that will bring you closer to nature
- Encounters – If one type of animal always seems to be around watching you or you have ever been attacked by an animal, this could be a sign your totem is testing whether you can handle its power
- Zodiac – Native American zodiac will reveal the animal associated with your birthday which may be your spirit animal or not, but will represent you well
- Shaman – A shaman or spiritual guide can help you identify your animal totem
If you are authentic in your request and respectful, your spirit guide animal will show itself to you. Any creature can serve as a guide, whether animals, insects, birds, or aquatic in nature.
Animal Guide Meanings
Each animal guide has a different meaning and each can mean something different for people. Below a few examples are included to help clarify common meanings.
- Bear – Bears teach us to maintain balance no matter what. They are believed to be protective of loved ones, wise, and able to hold strength during the hardest times.
- Buffalo – The buffalo totem tends to hold tension and need to find a safe release. Buffalos are strong and protective of their tribe with strength to face problems head on.
- Butterfly – This totem represents creativity, freedom, and transformation that teaches us to work with the earth to minimize harm to the planet.
- Coyote – Those who have the coyote totem are typically loyal, cunning, and goal-oriented. They are community focused and will deceive an outsider to keep loved ones safe. They teach us to work with the earth because they know the environment well.
- Crow – The crow totem is magically inclined and dedicated to following orders while being a strong healer.
- Deer – The deer totem is sensitive, intuitive, and spiritual.
- Dolphin – The dolphin is symbolic of lightheartedness and playfulness.
- Dove – The dove represents blessings and peace so others may call on them for guidance in troubled times.
- Eagle – An eagle spirit animal tends to thrive alone in isolation. They tend to see clearly in questionable situations.
- Fox – Those with this totem like to blend in and stay to themselves. While sensitive, they are agile and able to move forward in difficult situations.
- Horse – Those with this guide are thriving when left wild. They are headstrong, but will bend when they care about something. They prefer a partner who will be kind and patient. They tend to mean a positive change in your life.
- Owl – The owl totem is secretive and quiet, but people listen with respect when they speak. Owls teach us to embrace the dark as something that is not evil or fearful.
- Raven – The raven represents wisdom, mystery, and transformation and these individuals are usually sought for wisdom, teaching, and intelligence.
- Snake – The snake spirit guide is representative of sexuality, transformation, and rebirth. Snakes are strong with equally strong personalities, but tend to lash out when faced with a challenge. They teach us to work with the earth and learn from its vibrations.
- Tiger – The tiger is representative of emotion and raw energy. This totem is about connecting with instinct and intuition.
- Turtle – Those with the turtle totem are minimalists and prefer to travel light. This totem teaches us to look within and be happy with who we are, good and bad.
- Wolf – The wolf totem has a strong family connection, but does not socialize well with outsiders. This guide represents loyalty, strength, and community.
Honoring Your Spirit Animal
Once you discover your animal spirit guide, you need to honor them in the right ways. The more you do, the more clear messages you receive and the more their power can be felt in your life. You can honor them in the following ways:
- Study – Read and learn all you can about the animal including traits, diet, social status, and habitat
- Drawing – Drawing/Art – Drawing your animal honors it and connects you deeper to the physical form
- Figurines/Fetishes/Tokens – Decorate with pictures and other representations of your animal guide
- Dance – Imitate the animal’s movements to create a strong link spiritually
Remember, there is a distinction between worship and honor. We are meant to show honor as their equals, not allow a domination. The intention is to learn from the guide to keep harmony with the earth.