Animal Spirit Totem – Squirrel

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One of the most common animals in my area of the country seem to be gray squirrels. I realized years ago that squirrels are something I have taken for granted as they were so plentiful. I decided to sit down and watch them. I started learning things from them and saw how squirrels can be such a powerful animal spirit totem. The gray squirrels are the city and town dwellers. Gray squirrels do not hibernate. They build nests that are round with side entrances. Even though they are the biggest squirrel, they are also the most cowardly. If confronted, they will more than likely try to run away. Gray squirrels have two litters a year on average. The babies are self-sufficient after twelve weeks. Red squirrels are found more in forests and woods. Red squirrels are the guards of those woods and forests. If there is a stranger or danger afoot, the squirrels chatter loudly to sound an alarm. That alarm spreads quickly through the forest thanks to the squirrels. They also have two litters a year and are also self-sufficient after twelve weeks. We rarely see the lesser known black squirrel. The black squirrel is known for its aggressiveness. We also all know the flying squirrel, who isn’t really flying but stretching its skin and gliding on air. The gray, red and black squirrels run around in the day, whereas the flying squirrel is nocturnal.

All squirrels are playful. They wrestle and chase each other just for fun. They are also master imitators. That is how squirrels learn. They learn by observing and imitating what they see. If you have a squirrel as your animal spirit totem, you learn better by doing a task than by studying and reading books about it. Squirrels are fabulous communicators. If you listen to them, you can hear a large variety of sounds. Their bushy tails also help them get their point across. When they are on the defense, their tails get very bushy. Their tails also provide shade, heat and balance. Much like a cat, a squirrel will express emotions through its tail movements.

The one main thing that most people know about squirrels is that they stockpile nuts for the winter. Part of what makes that possible is their acute sense of smell. A lesser known trait of squirrels are that they have mastered the balance between work and play. Squirrels, as animal spirit totems, can teach us all about preparedness and working and playing in equal parts. One of the most valuable lessons for me personally is how they teach us not to get too hung up on accumulating. We also have to see the value in giving and sharing with our communities. They also are quite good at storing up energy in times of rest and non-movement. They also can switch directions on a dime. That is a valuable lesson for us to learn. When you notice a squirrel around you, stop and ask yourself some of the following questions:

  • Are you over active?
  • Are you under active?
  • Are you worried about lack and not having enough?
  • Does that fear turn into the fear that you are never going to have enough?
  • Do you need to learn to save and properly expend money, energy or time?
  • Are you spending too much time focused on collection and accumulation?
  • Are you not sharing what you have received?

How many of these traits of squirrel animal spirit totem apply to you? Enjoy squirrel spotting and learning the lessons that squirrel has to teach you.

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

larry December 25, 2011 at 12:03 pm

I believe the grey squirrel to be one of my totems. Today, while on the way to be with my granddaughter while she opened her presents, I was thinking of an old friend and an upcoming meeting and whiter it was a wise thing to do. squirrel dated out while I going down a backroad and I believe i struck him/her. Thereafter, i observed several more and immediately thought I was being taught something and of course was quite upset at the event where squirrel sacrificed his life to communicate to me. What is your interpretation?

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Elizabeth December 28, 2011 at 7:09 am

Taken directly from the post but this is what applies:

When you notice a squirrel around you, stop and ask yourself some of the following questions:

Are you over active?
Are you under active?
Are you worried about lack and not having enough?
Does that fear turn into the fear that you are never going to have enough?
Do you need to learn to save and properly expend money, energy or time?
Are you spending too much time focused on collection and accumulation?
Are you not sharing what you have received?

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paula August 4, 2012 at 8:43 am

I recently lost my job and was sitting on the porch wondering how to make my bills when a white squirrel with a walnut came up to me only a foot away for 30 seconds. There is two white squirrels that live in the area of my residence.

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Elizabeth August 7, 2012 at 9:28 am

THAT, Paula, is an awesome message from Spirit!!!! :) Thank you for sharing it.

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Sandra October 21, 2012 at 3:25 pm

Two and a half months ago I heard the dogs barking, which isn’t unusual, but this time I felt the need to see why they were barking. I saw a tiny squirrel (approx 3 weeks old) on the other side of the fence. The nest had been knocked to the ground because of the rain and wind. There was only the one squirrel although I know there are usually more than one in a nest. No mother squirrel was around and the ants were about to get the baby, so I brought her into the house and cared for her and now she is a healthy happy squirrel. I have been going through difficult times the last few years (deaths of loved ones) and the squirrel has brought joy into my life. Do you think I was guided to find the squirrel because of some spiritual signifigance. Could the squirrel be a totem?

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Elizabeth October 22, 2012 at 8:06 am

You were totally led to that little being. You needed each other. You learned a lot and you opened a lot. :) Your squirrel is, at the very least, a teaching guide. Thanks for sharing this story!

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Pepper Lilly November 6, 2012 at 11:20 am

Good day to you all! I have a story for you! About two years ago I had something pop in my head…spirit guide telling me to walk a path in the woods and once I see a birch tree take a right and walk the path…I did….I seen a BLACK squirrel at the time I was trying to figure out what I needed to do.
Today I was coming down a road by a lake and seen something ahead that looked huge and BLACK. Well, a car was beside and spend up and passed me. Noone was behind me….when I got closer the animal didn’t cross the road. It head back and I slowed down not to hit it. Instead of it crossing and running into the woods. IT STOPPED DEAD IN FRONT of my car and just stared at me! It was a BLACK SQUIRREL. HUGE!. It stood there for what seems minutes…I knew only seconds…

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Elizabeth November 12, 2012 at 7:18 am

Great story!! Thanks so much for sharing!

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Noor Mahmood November 20, 2012 at 3:07 pm

Hi I have a question? I’m not sure whether or not the sqirril is my spirit totem, because i think the panther is. But is it possible to have more than one? Anyway, i was walking home and a bunch of squrirrils were around (of course i didn’t think it was a big deal) but all of a sudden, nuts fell on me…i’m wondering if that means anything or they’re just eating…carelessly lol

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Elizabeth December 4, 2012 at 11:49 am

We have one main guide and MANY teaching guides through out our lives.

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RW December 27, 2012 at 12:52 pm

I had a long dream which involved a companion squirrel. At first I would whistle and she would appear out of nowhere and jump up on my shoulder to hang out for awhile. Later in the dream she would appear shortly after, or as, I thought of her always bolting toward me and leaping up to her perch on my shoulder. I felt she was an embodiment of a sense I needed to be reminded of . .

Any insight would be helpful

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Elizabeth December 28, 2012 at 2:43 pm

You actually would want a reading to cover both the dream and the message from squirrel. Contact me if you want one.

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Jonathan February 25, 2013 at 4:12 am

I watched a show on tv that talked about finding your Spirit Animal. so, I did a quiet meditation at my “Happy Place”. at first, I noticed a shadow fly over me, and I said in my head “ooh, an Eagle!” and immediately I heard a “No!” like right over my left shoulder. Then suddenly he leaps, then glides, super fast to the tree next to me. He or she then proceded to run around the trunk of the tree really fast, then rolled down the tree next to me. He or she then said “look again!”. I was so stunned at how playfull and fast the flying squirrel was, I fell right out of trance! I have heard of asking your animal guide for their name. I also haven’t found much about the flying squirrel as an animal guide. Just thought I’d share! Please help if you have any insight about the flying squirrel!

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Elizabeth February 26, 2013 at 7:28 am

I will do some research and write an article about it, Jonathan. This is the second time in as many days as I have heard about flying squirrels!

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Rebecka Darling-Darren August 28, 2013 at 5:00 pm

I’d like to know more about flying squirrel too. Flying squirrel came to me in a dream a few months ago, but I didnt recognise him. I thought he was a lynx (my totem) kitten that, as he jumped spread-eagling his legs out, created a magic blanket-wings – stretching between his paws, to land with. I live in Australia so we dont have lynx NOR flying squirrel. But after coming across a documentary of European(?) forrest this week, I realise I was probably visited by Flying Squirrel but didnt recognise him. He was very playful – the whole idea of his game was to ‘jump’ as far as he could, using the ‘blanket-wings’ thing to fuel the length of his flight (he really loved the air-time in a long glide!) and to also land on smoothly. He was absolutely focussed, no interest/conern at all in my fiance and I who were watching him, fascinated. Acted like we didnt exist. To him, we didnt! He’d perfected his landings. He was ALL about just extending his air time. that’s all he cared about…

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lydia cabrera September 9, 2013 at 9:14 am

on friday sept 6 i had a bad altercation with my family cops were called and everything I know what I was doing was right I never see squirrels in my neighborhood ive lived there since i was 5 and i am 31 now.i saw a squirrel it looked at me went up a tree, came really close to me and looked at me went up the tree when the cop was talking to me the squirrel came really close i said look at that squirrel he was even amazed. when my friend came to pick me up she said look at that squirrel. i saw it until i left that day came out of the tree like 5 times i never knew that was a tree in my parents front yard has been there since i was 5.

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Janet September 10, 2013 at 7:50 am

Dear Elizabeth, today I looked out my window and saw a very lifeless BLACK SQUIRREL floating in a pool. I’ve lived here for over 20 years. We have many grey squirrels. I’ve never seen a black squirrel, ever! Now, I how would you read this? I also have a hawk that has followed me around. He has come has close as a foot from me. A few weeks ago I had an encounter with where he’s sitting on a neighbors roof as usual watching work. I decided to stop and stretch my left arm out. Crazy I know. I still don’t understand why or what was going through my to think he would even go this. Not a minute later he comes straight at me! Yes I brought my unprotected arm down and he veered left into some trees. His call change to a shrill. Spooky. These aren’t dreams. I’m part Native American and I know this means something. What? Any advice would be appreciated.

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Elizabeth September 30, 2013 at 8:36 am

Hawks are messengers from Spirit. You are being protected.

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Asha September 28, 2013 at 4:37 pm

Two months ago I made a wish upon a star this was a dream I had.Two months later three albino squirrels were born now here’s the funny thing about this were I live there are only gray squirrels running around.I have NEVER in my 27 years of living seen a albino squirrel never alone three baby albino squirrels my question is … is that my blessing … are those little guys here to tell me something great is coming :) and plus all spring and summer and beginning of fall I’ve been feeding them

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Elizabeth September 30, 2013 at 8:22 am

White (or albino) is the sign of Spirit / protection. I do believe your wishes are on their way!

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Kathleen October 15, 2013 at 1:09 pm

I have had two enconters with a flying squirrel in my house. In the first event, the little guy was eating from the cat’s dish. I put a bucket over him and the dish, slid a board under both and took them outside. It was broad daylight, he was croggy so I was able to pick him up and put him in the wooded area where he would be safer. The second time the cat’s had him cornered atop the curtain rod. It was early morning – not yet daylight. I removed the felines, opened the sliding glass door and he scampered out the door.

I have found no satisfactory discussions about flying squirrels anywhere. The flying squirrel is nocturnal. That has to be relevant. The fact that he “flies” – not quite like a bird but he flies. Birds I think are seen as messengers from the non-material realms. A mammal as a messenger from non-material realms?? Seems there is something there.

I live in a suburb of Chicago. Never expected that flying squirrels lived around here – southeast Asia, maybe, but Chicago? Any insight or guidance greatly appreciated.

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Elizabeth November 17, 2013 at 10:34 am

Lots of people have flying squirrels as pets…including in cities in the US. It’s quite possible this is an escapee.

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