Native American Totems &Their Meanings from A to D

Published on January 29, 2012 by Casey

Love this article and want to save it to read again later? Add it to your favourites! To find all your favourite posts, check out My Favourites on the menu bar.

Native American Totem Pole
Native American Totem Pole

Native American Totems

A totem can be the symbol of a tribe, clan, family or individual. Native American tradition provides that each individual is connected with nine different animals that will accompany each person through life, acting as guides. Different animal guides come in and out of our lives depending on the direction that we are headed and the tasks that need to be completed along our journey.

dna testing, dna ancestry testing, ancestry, genealogy, indian genealogy records, paternity testing, turquoise jewelry, native american jewelry

Animal Characteristics & Meaning

  • Alligator : Maternal, revenge oriented, quickness, aggression, and basic survival instincts.
  • Ant : Group minded, determination, patient, active, and industrious
  • Anteater: Lethargy, curiosity, nosiness.
  • Antelope: Active, agile, jumpiness, and willing to sacrifice
  • Armadillo: Safety oriented, grounded, and has boundaries
  • Badger: Courage, aggressive, healer, having problems relating to others, and energy conduit
  • Bat: Rebirth, longevity, secrecy, initiation, good listener, and long life
  • Bear : Industrious, instinctive, healing, power, sovereignty, guardian of the world, watcher, courage, will power, self-preservation, introspection, and great strength.
  • Beaver : Determined, strong-willed, builder, overseer, and protector
  • Bee : Organized, industrial, productive, wise, community, celebration, fertility, defensiveness, obsessive nature, and enjoys life
  • Boar/Pig : A very powerful totem – prosperity, spiritual strength, organized, self-reliant, fearless.
  • Buffalo : Sacredness, life, great strength, abundance, gratitude.
  • Bull : Insight into the past, fertility, rushing into things without proper preparation.
  • Butterfly : Metamorphosis, transformation, balnace, grace, ability to accept change
  • Camel : Survival, positive, accomplishments
  • Caribou : Traveler, mobility, preference to be nomadic, adaptability to adversity
  • Cat : Guardianship, detachment, sensuality, mystery, magic, and independence
  • Cheetah : Swiftness, insight, focus
  • Cougar : Leadership, loyalty, courage, taking responsibility, foresight
  • Cow : Swift, insightful, and focused
  • Coyote : Trickster, intelligence, stealth, wisdom and folley, guile and innocence
  • Cobra : Swift and decisive
  • Crab : Good luck, protection and success
  • Crane : Solitude, justice, longevity, independent, intelligent, and vigilant
  • Crocodile : Ensuring your emotions are displayed accurately/appropriately
  • Crow : Justice, shape shifting, change, creativity, spiritual strength, energy, community sharing, and balance
  • Deer : Compassion, peace, intellectual, gentle, caring, kind, subtlety, gracefulness, femininity, gentleness, innocence, and seller of adventure
  • Dog : Noble, faithful, loyal, teaching, protection, and guidance
  • Dolphin : Kind, salvation, wisdom, happiness, playfulness, prudent, capable of deep emotion, and happy.
  • Dove : Cross-world communication, spirit messenger, peace, gentleness, love
  • Dragon : Longevity, richness, prosperity, infinity, wisdom, power, and fiery
  • Dragonfly : Flighty and carefree, strong imagination, higher aspirations.
  • Duck : Water energy, helper of seers, can clearly see/deal with emotions

Source: legendsofamerica Unabridged
Based on the collective work of, © 2015 Native American Encyclopedia.
Cite This Source | Link To Native American Totems &Their Meanings from A to D
Add these citations to your bibliography. Select the text below and then copy and paste it into your document.

American Psychological Association (APA):

Native American Totems &Their Meanings from A to D Unabridged. Retrieved May 26, 2015, from website:

Chicago Manual Style (CMS):

Native American Totems &Their Meanings from A to D Unabridged. Native American Encyclopedia (accessed: May 26, 2015).

Modern Language Association (MLA):

"Native American Totems &Their Meanings from A to D" Unabridged. Native American Encyclopedia 26 May. 2015. <>.

Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE):, "Native American Totems &Their Meanings from A to D" in Unabridged. Source location: Native American Encyclopedia Available: Accessed: May 26, 2015.

BibTeX Bibliography Style (BibTeX)

@ article {NativeAmericanEncyclopedia.com2015,
    title = { Unabridged},
    month = May,
    day = 26,
    year = 2015,
    url = {},
You might also like:

Tags:  , ,

Facebook Comments

You must be logged in to post a comment.