Squirrel – Spirit Animal, Totem, Symbolism and Meaning

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Squirrels belong to a family of small to medium-size rodents. Their family includes ground and tree squirrels, flying squirrels, marmots, chipmunks, etc. They are spread all over the Americas, Eurasia and Africa. They live in almost all kind of habitats, like deserts, rainforests, etc.

The oldest squirrel fossil is around 40-35 million years old. These fossils resemble the modern flying squirrels. According to the fossil remains, the origin of squirrels might be in North America.

Different species vary in size, ranging from 7cm in length and 10g in weight, like the African pygmy squirrel, to the Laotian giant flying squirrel which reaches 1.08 m in length, or the Alpine marmot which weighs up to 8kg.

Squirrels are known for having bushy tails and large eyes. They have a different range of colors, depending on the species. Their hind limbs are often longer than their fore limbs.

They have sturdy claws which they mostly use for climbing.

They are mostly plant eaters, but many of them feed on insects and small vertebrates as well. They have an excellent vision and some of them have a great sense of touch as well.

Their front teeth never stop growing.

The lifespan of an adult squirrel in the wild is up to 10 years. In captivity they can live up to 20 years.

They mate once or twice per year. Their young are born naked and toothless. The females mostly take care of the young.

Usually the species which live in trees are solitary types, while the ones which spend more time on the ground are the more social ones. They are usually diurnal types, while flying squirrels are usually nocturnal.

Squirrels even gain extra weight to help them survive harsh winter conditions. During cold months food is very important for them.

The most challenging part of the year is spring when the nuts they have buried under ground begin to sprout so they cannot be eaten, and there aren’t enough new food resources available for them to eat.

They are able to smell food under snow and dig a tunnel following that scent to find the buried food. If they have multiple stashes of food, they can have a difficulty of keeping them safe from potential robbers, birds or other squirrels.


They are also known to make fake stashes, only pretending to burry nuts, to deceive potential thieves. Some of the nuts they burry don’t get eaten but instead grow into new trees.

Squirrels feed on different plants, such as seeds, nuts, fruits, green vegetation and fungi.

When they need to they eat meat, usually when there’s nothing else on the meny. They eat small birds, small rodents and snakes, birds’ eggs, and insects.

They are very agile and use a special technique of running in a zigzag pattern so they can escape predators, like eagles, and other birds of prey.

What does a Squirrel Symbolize?

The squirrel totem animal has an important symbolism.

The squirrel is a symbol of activity, agility, action, balance, resourcefulness, responsibility, caring for the future, preparedness, benevolence, awareness, gathering, adaptability, collecting, energy, playfulness, life, planning, organization, joy, happiness, socializing, etc.

The Squirrel Meaning as a Spirit Animal

The squirrel totem can have many different meanings. Here are some of them:

Responsibility. Squirrels are well known for their responsibility. They plan their life, especially their eating ahead. They prepare food and necessities for the winter and they readily wait for it to begin. The squirrel totem teaches you about the need to be responsible and take care of your obligations in time to avoid potential consequences.

With the squirrel totem, you are usually a very responsible and reliable person.

Planning and organization. Squirrels plan their winter meny carefully and in due time. These animals teach us of the importance of planning and organization for our lives. It inspires you to make plans for your future, and the actions and means for their realization.

With the squirrel as your spirit animal, you are usually a very organized person, prone to planning the tiniest details of your actions to ensure their success.

Sometimes the squirrel could be reminding you not to go to another extreme of being overly organized and planning every detail up to the point you forget to enjoy life and its beauty.

Resourcefulness and adaptability. Squirrels are very adaptable and resourceful. The squirrel spirit animal is giving you these gifts as well. You seem to make something out of nothing.

You accomplish your goals with the resources which are available to you at that moment. You are adaptable and don’t need much to be satisfied.

Collecting (hoarding). Squirrels are true collectors, although mostly collecting food for the winter. They burry their treasures underground, and sometimes they don’t get to use them so they go bust. If you have the squirrel as your spirit animal, you can have somewhat of a hoarder’s personality.

You might be prone to collecting things you don’t actually need just for the sake of having them around.

The squirrel totem reminds you to get rid of these habits because they could cause you problems in the long run.

Playfulness. Squirrels are playful animals. As totem animals, they remind us to be more playful and less serious about life. The squirrel asks you to release the stress caused by obligations and responsibilities, and simply relax, enjoying the beauty of nature and life itself.

Try to spend more time in the company of people who make you happy and relaxed.

You try to relax more and get rid of things and people who are creating negativity in your life, preventing you from expressing your true, playful nature. 

Squirrel as Your Totem Animal

If the squirrel is your totem animal, you are most likely a fun and loving personality. On one hand you are playful and enjoy life to the fullest and on the other, you are responsible and organized and full of plans for the future.

You love the feeling of security and you put in efforts to provide for yourself and your family. You feel calm when everything is taken care of.

You could sometimes be prone to hoarding things, especially food you don’t need. You subconsciously know that you will be throwing or giving away these things one day, but something inside you won’t let you change these bad habits.

Your need for security sometimes goes a long way.

With the squirrel as your totem, you are very adaptable and resourceful. You know how to get where you want and what you want. With the Squirrel as your totem you seem to always be in possession of the things you need. You are always prepared for situations “what if”.

You know how to balance your private with your professional life. If you begin overloading yourself with way too many obligations, the squirrel appears to remind you to lighten up and find time to simply do nothing.

You could be prone to do several things at once, but this spirit animal teaches you to take one step at a time. Focus on one thing and finish it.

With this totem you are a curious and intelligent person. Many areas interest you, and you have close relations with the spirit realms. You have a strongly developed inner guidance and you tend to listen to what it has to say regarding important decisions and choices you need to make.

You have an adventurous spirit and you enjoy traveling and exploring the world.

You are sociable and interesting and people enjoy your company. You enjoy helping others and taking care of them selflessly.

One thing is sure; they can always find a comforting hand and something to eat.

What if the Squirrel Appears in Your Life?

The squirrels symbolize fun and relaxation. They are a sign that we need to relax more and just enjoy life and its simple pleasures. When the squirrel appears in your life, it could be a reminder to slow down with your duties, which are weighing you down and eating your life.

Don’t overwhelm yourself but find a way to make your life easier.

The squirrel is asking us to consider life as a game or a play. Things unfold naturally and we need to enjoy the ride and not feel stressed about it.

The squirrel reminds us to be playful and laugh more.

Squirrels are responsible animals, thinking about the future and preparing for it. The squirrel appearing in your life could be a reminder to make some plans for the future.

Maybe you need to start saving for some long-term goal which will enable you to fulfill some desires.

The squirrel is often a reminder of the practical side of life, our duties and responsibilities.

On the other hand, the squirrel could be a reminder to begin getting rid of some duties which are weighing you down and preventing you from doing things you desire.

Maybe you are cluttered with things to do, things you do for other people or some other obligations you actually don’t need to do.

The squirrel also reminds you to get rid of things that are unnecessary for your wellbeing. These things can be stress, anxiety, worries, memories, hurts, negative emotions, negative people, etc. Gather strength and get rid of them all. They are only blocking you from being where you want to be.

If a flying squirrel appears in your life that could be a sign of some new insights you might come across. Maybe you will have some realizations coming from your subconscious.

When to call on Squirrel?

You should call on squirrel as your spirit animal when:

  • You need to relax and enjoy the simple things;
  • You want to become more responsible and serious about your plans for the future;
  • You want to begin saving for the future and providing a secure base for yourself and your loved ones;

Dreams about Squirrel – Interpretation and Meaning

Dreams about squirrels are not common. If you were feeding it in your dream, that is a good sign, indicating abundance and enough to share with others without worries.

It is a sign of comfort and plenty as a result of your work.

This dream often calls you to begin saving money for the future.

If you dreamed of a squirrel collecting food, that is a good sign as well, indicating some sudden and unexpected gains.

A sick squirrel in your dream could indicate your involvement in some futile business endeavor, or a relationship without a future. Maybe you should consider ending it all in time.