Do animals also dream?

Do animals also dream?

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By "dream", I mean:

  1. Dreaming while sleeping.
  2. Dreaming about their future life while being awake.

Thank you in advance.

According to this Psychology Today blogpost, it is quite likely that animals can dream. Particularly mammals that according to the blogpost:

All mammals share the same neural structures that are important in sleeping and dreaming.

However, for your second question, I do not think it is at all possible to know what they are dreaming about (if they indeed do dream).

Dreams are simulations created by the brain in order to train us to cope with challenging situations. Most of the dreams present situations where the individual is confronted with challenges or risks he/she might face during the life. Evolutionary concept of dream suggests that its a way by which brain try to notify some risks and train us to invade through it. The evolutionary acceptance of dreams is due to the "threat simulation" feature it possess. By which an individual can gain advantage of several situations he/she confronts in life.

Finnish psychologist Antti Revonsuo posits that dreams have evolved for "threat simulation" exclusively. According to the Threat Simulation Theory he proposes, during much of human evolution physical and interpersonal threats were serious, giving reproductive advantage to those who survived them. Therefore dreaming evolved to replicate these threats and continually practice dealing with them. In support of this theory, Revonsuo shows that contemporary dreams comprise much more threatening events than people meet in daily non-dream life, and the dreamer usually engages appropriately with them. It is suggested by this theory that dreams serve the purpose of allowing for the rehearsal of threatening scenarios in order to better prepare an individual for real-life threats.

Question 1

Yes they do. Studies suggests that animals can dream while sleeping, entire human dreams occur during the REM sleep period. Most of the mammals do have the REM sleep period and it suggests that they do dream in this time of sleep.

Dreams occur during REM sleep. We typically have 3 to 5 periods of REM sleep per night. They occur at intervals of 1-2 hours and are quite variable in length. An episode of REM sleep may last 5 minutes or over an hour. About 20% of sleep is REM sleep. If you sleep 7-8 hours a night, perhaps an hour and half of that time, 90 minutes, is REM sleep.

REM sleep is characterized by a number of other features including rapid, low-voltage brain waves detectable on the electroencephalographic (EEG) recording, irregular breathing and heart rate and involuntary muscle jerks. Reference

This link provides much more examples.

According to the studies of MIT,

Wilson, associate professor of brain and cognitive sciences at MIT, and biology graduate student Kenway Louie trained rats to run along a circular track for a food reward.

They monitored the animals' brain activity during the task and while they were asleep. While the animal ran, its brain created a distinctive pattern of neurons firing in the hippocampus, a brain area known to be involved in memory.

Like us, rats go through multiple stages of sleep, from slow-wave sleep to REM sleep. In humans, it is during REM sleep that most dreaming occurs.

The researchers then examined more than 40 REM episodes recorded while the rats slept. About half repeated the unique signature of brain activity that was created as the animal ran. The correlation was so close that the researchers found that as the animal dreamed, they could reconstruct where it would be in the maze if it were awake and whether the animal was dreaming of running or standing still.

These memories were replayed at about the same speed that the animal had experienced them while awake. Reference

Question 2

Dreaming about their future life while being awake, good question. If they do so then it will be a contradiction to our long held view of animal thought process. Most of the animal thought process that we try to reveal is through the firing of particular areas in their brain with the association of certain hormones. By this process we can find that which all neural pathways are used while dreaming and which are not.

As we can find that animals also have dreams, then it is obvious that they could recollect it (some what vague) and can prepare mentally to face those particular situations. This doesn't mean that they do have plans about events coming for them in future, but researchers states that dreams are their only offline experience with those events. The memory of those dreams help them to ensure little advantage over those future events. While in the case of humans, we have a highly complex brain which is so good at simulating events by which we can plan our future, but other animals lack this complex structure(complex but not as much as ours), so they entirely rely on dreams for that purpose.

Why do animals dream about one experience and not another? "This work allows us to evaluate the content of dreams and create tests to see which awake patterns create patterns when the animal is asleep," Wilson said. "If we are able to evaluate the content of the dreaming state, we may be able to find out why certain events get replayed and others don't."

This work also raises questions about long-held assumptions about animals' thought processes. Only a handful of species - among them chimps and dolphins - were thought to have any ability at all to recall and evaluate detailed sequences of events after they occurred. Wilson points out that "dreams are the ultimate off-line experience. This work demonstrates that animals are capable of re-evaluating their experiences when they are not in the midst of them." Reference

From the ScientificAmerican

Yet, given the vast documentation of realistic aspects to human dreaming as well as indirect experimental evidence that other mammals such as cats also dream, evolutionary psychologists have theorized that dreaming really does serve a purpose.

Although the linked article doesn't look like they were talking about animals. But I wont purchase the article to check that…

As for your second question, I would say yes, when you would say, making a plan is equivalent to dream of the future. Crows are smarter than you think…

Non-reproductive sexual behavior in animals

Non-reproductive sexual behavior consists of sexual activities animals participate in that do not lead to the reproduction of the species. Although procreation continues to be the primary explanation for sexual behavior in animals, recent observations on animal behavior have given alternative reasons for the engagement in sexual activities by animals. [1] Animals have been observed to engage in sex for social interaction, demonstration of dominance, aggression relief, exchange for significant materials, and sexual stimulation. Observed non-procreative sexual activities include non-copulatory mounting (without penetration, or by the female), oral sex, genital stimulation, anal stimulation, interspecies mating, and acts of affection. [2] There have also been observations of animals engaging in homosexual behaviors, [3] [4] as well as sex with dead animals [5] and sex involving juveniles. [6]

Why Do We Dream? A New Theory on How It Protects Our Brains

W hen he was two years old, Ben stopped seeing out of his left eye. His mother took him to the doctor and soon discovered he had retinal cancer in both eyes. After chemotherapy and radiation failed, surgeons removed both his eyes. For Ben, vision was gone forever.

But by the time he was seven years old, he had devised a technique for decoding the world around him: he clicked with his mouth and listened for the returning echoes. This method enabled Ben to determine the locations of open doorways, people, parked cars, garbage cans, and so on. He was echolocating: bouncing his sound waves off objects in the environment and catching the reflections to build a mental model of his surroundings.

Echolocation may sound like an improbable feat for a human, but thousands of blind people have perfected this skill, just like Ben did. The phenomenon has been written about since at least the 1940s, when the word &ldquoecholocation&rdquo was first coined in a Science article titled &ldquoEcholocation by Blind Men, Bats, and Radar.&rdquo

How could blindness give rise to the stunning ability to understand the surroundings with one&rsquos ears? The answer lies in a gift bestowed on the brain by evolution: tremendous adaptability.

Whenever we learn something new, pick up a new skill, or modify our habits, the physical structure of our brain changes. Neurons, the cells responsible for rapidly processing information in the brain, are interconnected by the thousands&mdashbut like friendships in a community, the connections between them constantly change: strengthening, weakening, and finding new partners. The field of neuroscience calls this phenomenon &ldquobrain plasticity,&rdquo referring to the ability of the brain, like plastic, to assume new shapes and hold them. More recent discoveries in neuroscience suggest that the brain&rsquos brand of flexibility is far more nuanced than holding onto a shape, though. To capture this, we refer to the brain&rsquos plasticity as &ldquolivewiring&rdquo to spotlight how this vast system of 86 billion neurons and 0.2 quadrillion connections rewires itself every moment of your life.

Neuroscience used to think that different parts of the brain were predetermined to perform specific functions. But more recent discoveries have upended the old paradigm. One part of the brain may initially be assigned a specific task for instance, the back of our brain is called the &ldquovisual cortex&rdquo because it usually handles sight. But that territory can be reassigned to a different task. There is nothing special about neurons in the visual cortex: they are simply neurons that happen to be involved in processing shapes or colors in people who have functioning eyes. But in the sightless, these same neurons can rewire themselves to process other types of information.

Mother Nature imbued our brains with flexibility to adapt to circumstances. Just as sharp teeth and fast legs are useful for survival, so is the brain&rsquos ability to reconfigure. The brain&rsquos livewiring allows for learning, memory, and the ability to develop new skills.

In Ben&rsquos case, his brain&rsquos flexible wiring repurposed his visual cortex for processing sound. As a result, Ben had more neurons available to deal with auditory information, and this increased processing power allowed Ben to interpret soundwaves in shocking detail. Ben&rsquos super-hearing demonstrates a more general rule: the more brain territory a particular sense has, the better it performs.

Recent decades have yielded several revelations about livewiring, but perhaps the biggest surprise is its rapidity. Brain circuits reorganize not only in the newly blind, but also in the sighted who have temporary blindness. In one study, sighted participants intensively learned how to read Braille. Half the participants were blindfolded throughout the experience. At the end of the five days, the participants who wore blindfolds could distinguish subtle differences between Braille characters much better than the participants who didn&rsquot wear blindfolds. Even more remarkably, the blindfolded participants showed activation in visual brain regions in response to touch and sound. When activity in the visual cortex was temporarily disrupted, the Braille-reading advantage of the blindfolded participants went away. In other words, the blindfolded participants performed better on the touch-related task because their visual cortex had been recruited to help. After the blindfold was removed, the visual cortex returned to normal within a day, no longer responding to touch and sound.

But such changes don&rsquot have to take five days that just happened to be when the measurement took place. When blindfolded participants are continuously measured, touch-related activity shows up in the visual cortex in about an hour.

What does brain flexibility and rapid cortical takeover have to do with dreaming? Perhaps more than previously thought. Ben clearly benefited from the redistribution of his visual cortex to other senses because he had permanently lost his eyes, but what about the participants in the blindfold experiments? If our loss of a sense is only temporary, then the rapid conquest of brain territory may not be so helpful.

And this, we propose, is why we dream.

In the ceaseless competition for brain territory, the visual system has a unique problem: due to the planet&rsquos rotation, all animals are cast into darkness for an average of 12 out of every 24 hours. (Of course, this refers to the vast majority of evolutionary time, not to our present electrified world.) Our ancestors effectively were unwitting participants in the blindfold experiment, every night of their entire lives.

So how did the visual cortex of our ancestors&rsquo brains defend its territory, in the absence of input from the eyes?

We suggest that the brain preserves the territory of the visual cortex by keeping it active at night. In our &ldquodefensive activation theory,&rdquo dream sleep exists to keep neurons in the visual cortex active, thereby combating a takeover by the neighboring senses. In this view, dreams are primarily visual precisely because this is the only sense that is disadvantaged by darkness. Thus, only the visual cortex is vulnerable in a way that warrants internally-generated activity to preserve its territory.

In humans, sleep is punctuated by rapid eye movement (REM) sleep every 90 minutes. This is when most dreaming occurs. (Although some forms of dreaming can occur during non-REM sleep, such dreams are abstract and lack the visual vividness of REM dreams.)

REM sleep is triggered by a specialized set of neurons that pump activity straight into the brain&rsquos visual cortex, causing us to experience vision even though our eyes are closed. This activity in the visual cortex is presumably why dreams are pictorial and filmic. (The dream-stoking circuitry also paralyzes your muscles during REM sleep so that your brain can simulate a visual experience without moving the body at the same time.) The anatomical precision of these circuits suggests that dream sleep is biologically important&mdashsuch precise and universal circuitry rarely evolves without an important function behind it.

The defensive activation theory makes some clear predictions about dreaming. For example, because brain flexibility diminishes with age, the fraction of sleep spent in REM should also decrease across the lifespan. And that&rsquos exactly what happens: in humans, REM accounts for half of an infant&rsquos sleep time, but the percentage decreases steadily to about 18% in the elderly. REM sleep appears to become less necessary as the brain becomes less flexible.

Of course, this relationship is not sufficient to prove the defensive activation theory. To test it on a deeper level, we broadened our investigation to animals other than humans. The defensive activation theory makes a specific prediction: the more flexible an animal&rsquos brain, the more REM sleep it should have to defend its visual system during sleep. To this end, we examined the extent to which the brains of 25 species of primates are &ldquopre-programmed&rdquo versus flexible at birth. How might we measure this? We looked at the time it takes animals of each species to develop. How long do they take to wean from their mothers? How quickly do they learn to walk? How many years until they reach adolescence? The more rapid an animal&rsquos development, the more pre-programmed (that is, less flexible) the brain.

As predicted, we found that species with more flexible brains spend more time in REM sleep each night. Although these two measures&mdashbrain flexibility and REM sleep&mdashwould seem at first to be unrelated, they are in fact linked.

As a side note, two of the primate species we looked at were nocturnal. But this does not change the hypothesis: whenever an animal sleeps, whether at night or during the day, the visual cortex is at risk of takeover by the other senses. Nocturnal primates, equipped with strong night vision, employ their vision throughout the night as they seek food and avoid predation. When they subsequently sleep during the day, their closed eyes allow no visual input, and thus, their visual cortex requires defense.

Dream circuitry is so fundamentally important that it is found even in people who are born blind. However, those who are born blind (or who become blind early in life) don&rsquot experience visual imagery in their dreams instead, they have other sensory experiences, such as feeling their way around a rearranged living room or hearing strange dogs barking. This is because other senses have taken over their visual cortex. In other words, blind and sighted people alike experience activity in the same region of their brain during dreams they differ only in the senses that are processed there. Interestingly, people who become blind after the age of seven have more visual content in their dreams than those who become blind at younger ages. This, too, is consistent with the defensive activation theory: brains become less flexible as we age, so if one loses sight at an older age, the non-visual senses cannot fully conquer the visual cortex.

If dreams are visual hallucinations triggered by a lack of visual input, we might expect to find similar visual hallucinations in people who are slowly deprived of visual input while awake. In fact, this is precisely what happens in people with eye degeneration, patients confined to a tank-respirator, and prisoners in solitary confinement. In all of these cases, people see things that are not there.

We developed our defensive activation theory to explain visual hallucinations during extended periods of darkness, but it may represent a more general principle: the brain has evolved specific circuitry to generate activity that compensates for periods of deprivation. This might occur in several scenarios: when deprivation is regular and predictable (e.g., dreams during sleep), when there is damage to the sensory input pathway (e.g., tinnitus or phantom limb syndrome), and when deprivation is unpredictable (e.g., hallucinations induced by sensory deprivation). In this sense, hallucinations during deprivation may in fact be a feature of the system rather than a bug.

We&rsquore now pursuing a systematic comparison between a variety of species across the animal kingdom. So far, the evidence has been encouraging. Some mammals are born immature, unable to regulate their own temperature, acquire food, or defend themselves (think kittens, puppies, and ferrets). Others are born mature, emerging from the womb with teeth, fur, open eyes, and the abilities to regulate their temperature, walk within an hour of birth, and eat solid food (think guinea pigs, sheep, and giraffes). The immature animals have up to 8 times more REM sleep than those born mature. Why? Because when a newborn brain is highly flexible, the system requires more effort to defend the visual system during sleep.

Since the dawn of communication, dreams have perplexed philosophers, priests, and poets. What do dreams mean? Do they portend the future? In recent decades, dreams have come under the gaze of neuroscientists as one of the field&rsquos central unsolved mysteries. Do they serve a more practical, functional purpose? We suggest that dream sleep exists, at least in part, to prevent the other senses from taking over the brain&rsquos visual cortex when it goes unused. Dreams are the counterbalance against too much flexibility. Thus, although dreams have long been the subject of song and story, they may be better understood as the strange lovechild of brain plasticity and the rotation of the planet.

Dream a Little Dream of Me

My squid dream got me curious: Can cephalopods—a group that includes squid, octopuses, and cuttlefish—dream?

“It’s possible, it all depends on your definition of 'dreaming,'” Spiers says. (Read about the mysteries of why we sleep in National Geographic magazine.)

For instance, cuttlefish exhibit a sleep-like state accompanied by color changes, twitching, and rapid eye movements similar to REM sleep, according to a 2012 study in the journal PLoS ONE.

Who knows, maybe that giant squid is out there in the ocean dreaming about me.

Weird Animal Question of the Week answers your questions every Saturday. If you have a question about the weird and wild animal world, tweet me, leave me a note or photo in the comments below, or find me on Facebook.



A mechanism within an organism (for example, the pineal gland in the human brain) that governs biological rhythms.


Processes that occur periodically in an organism in conjunction with and often in response to periodic changes in environmental conditions.


A subdiscipline of biology devoted to the study of biological rhythms.


A biological cycle that takes place over the course of approximately a day. In humans circadian rhythms run on a cycle of approximately 25 hours and govern states of sleep and wakefulness as well as core body tempera ture and other biological functions.


Molecules produced by living cells, which send signals to spots remote from their point of origin and which induce specific effects on the activities of other cells.


A biological cycle that takes place over the course of a month.


A physiological and psycho logical condition in humans that typically includes fatigue and irritability it usually follows from a long flight through several time zones and probably results from disruption of circadian rhythms.


The point at which menstrual cycles cease, a time that typical ly corresponds to the cessation of the female's reproductive abilities.


Sloughing off of the lining of the uterus, which occurs monthly in non pregnant females who have not reached menopause (the point at which menstrual cycles cease) and which manifests as a discharge of blood.


A small, usually cone-shaped portion of the brain, often located between the two lobes, that plays a principal role in governing the release of certain hormones, including those associated with human circadian rhythms.


A biological cycle that takes place over the course of less than a day. Compare with circadian rhythm.

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FYI: Do Animals Dream?

Yes. Many pet owners have seen their sleeping dog or cat twitch or paw the air, as if dreaming of bones to bury or mice to chase. Stanley Coren, a psychology professor at the University of British Columbia and author of the book The Intelligence of Dogs, says that canines go through the same sleep stages as we do, only faster.

After about 20 minutes, a dog enters REM sleep, the stage in which most vivid dreams occur. Big dogs dream longer, Coren says, and little dogs dream quickly and frequently. He doesn’t know why, and neither does anyone else. Insects and fish don’t experience REM sleep, but some birds and all mammals do. Reptiles might also experience REM, and some scientists argue that our mammalian dreaming might be a holdover from our reptilian brains.

The purpose of dreaming remains a mystery, but infants (of all species) dream more often. This is probably because the sensory stimulation helps form new neural connections. In adults, the best working theory is that dreams stimulate the regions of the brain associated with memory. Finches replay the melody of their birdsong in their dreams, and lab rats retrace the mazes they have run.

Advantages to Using Animals for Research

The human body is very complicated, and many scientists believe that a living system is the best way to study it. Image from PLoS Biology Vol. 4, No. 2, e29.

The cells, tissues, and organs of the human body work together in very complex ways. When scientists test a research question they want to test their ideas on a system that is as much like that of human bodies as possible. So far, a living animal has been a better model of the human body than what other laboratory techniques can provide.

Chimpanzees and mice (and other animals, too) do not look very much like humans, but it turns out that their DNA is very similar to that of humans. This makes humans and animals biologically similar, and they can sometimes be affected by the same health problems. Scientists take advantage of this similarity and use animal models to test their research ideas.

Scientists also tend to work with animals that have shorter life spans than humans. For example, laboratory mice may only live for 2 to 3 years. In contrast, humans can live upwards of 80 to 100 years. The shorter lifespan of animals gives researchers an opportunity to study different questions over an entire lifetime rather than a very small portion of it. This can help study diseases like Parkinson’s, which may not develop until a person has been alive for 40 to 50 years.

Sleep as an Adaptive Process

  • Americans feel sleepy on average three times a week.
  • Those who feel sleepy five to seven days a week report high rates of irritability (52%), headaches (40%), and feeling unwell (34%).
  • 52% of the people say that feeling sleepy can impact their willingness to go out in the evening.
  • 48% of the people say feeling sleepy can impact their ability to focus their thoughts
  • 55% of the survey respondents say they feel sleepy because they're not sleeping well enough while 44% of the people say they don't have enough time to sleep.
  • People who report more personal stress say they feel more sleepy than people with less personal stress.
  • 50 to 70 million people in the United States have sleep disorders. Statistic from National Institutes of Health
  • 1 in 3 adults in the United States do not regularly get the recommended amount of sleep to protect their health. Statistic from National Institutes of Health
  • Sleepwalking is also known as "somnambulism" sleeptalking is also known as "somniloquy."

"The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
But I have promises to keep,
and miles to go before I sleep."
--- Robert Frost, 1923 (in Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening)

"Sleep is better than medicine."
--- English Proverb

"The beginning of health is sleep."
--- Irish Proverb

"In sleep we are all equal."
--- Spanish Proverb

"Disease and sleep keep far apart."
--- Welsh Proverb

"Dreaming of eating will not satisfy the hungry."
--- African Proverb

"Sleep is an acquired habit. Cells don't sleep. Fish swim in the water all night. Even a horse doesn't sleep. A man doesn't need any sleep."
--- Thomas Edison, inventor

Do animals also dream? - Biology

Seeing animals in your dream points to your primal instincts, needs and desires that may be repressed in your waking life. Each animal has specific characteristics that will help guide you as to what your subconscious is trying to reveal.

To see an alligator in your dream symbolizes treachery, deceit, and hidden instincts. It may be a signal for you to take on a new perspective on a situation. It may also represent your ability to move between the physical, material world of waking life and the emotional, repressed world of the unconscious. Alternatively, the alligator represents healing powers and qualities. An alligator also suggests that you are thick-skinned or insensitive.

To dream that you are running away from the alligator, indicates t hat you are unwilling to confront some painful and disturbing aspect of your unconscious. There is some potentially destructive emotion that you are refusing to acknowledge and
owning up to.

To dream that you are raped by an alligator, indicates that you feel violated or taken advantage of in some way. The alligator is symbolic of someone who is ruthless, insensitive and treacherous. This person has a strong hold on you despite your efforts to break free from the unhealthy relationship.

According to biblical interpretations, an alligator suggests that leviathan is king over the children of pride. (Psa 74:14, Job 41:1,Isa 27:1) TOP

To see animals in your dream represent your own physical characteristic, primitive desires, and sexual nature, depending on the qualities of the particular animal. Animals symbolize the untamed and uncivilized aspects of yourself. Thus, to dream that you are fighting with an animal signifies a hidden part of yourself that you are trying to reject and push back into your subconscious. Refer to the specific animal in your dream.

To dream that animals can talk represent superior knowledge. Its message is often some form of wisdom. Alternatively, a talking animal denotes your potential to be all that you can be.

To dream that you are saving the life of an animal, suggests that you are successfully acknowledging certain emotions and characteristics represented by the animal. The dream may also stem from feelings of inadequacy or being overwhelmed. If you are setting an animal free, then it indicates an expression and release of your own primal desires.

To see lab animals in your dream suggest that an aspect of yourself is being repressed. You feel that you are not able to fully express your desires and emotions. Alternatively, it suggests that you need to experiment with your fears, choices, and beliefs. Try not to limit yourself. TOP

To see an anteater in your dream indicates that you need to proceed with caution in some endeavor. TOP

To see an antelope in your dream suggests that your high ambitions will only be achieved through a great expenditure of energy. You will experience much success as a result of your dedication. Alternatively, the dream may be telling you to flee or retreat from some situation.

To see an antelope collapse in your dream, means signifies that you are at fault for a broken-up love affair. TOP

To see an ape in your dream indicates deception, mischievous, and falsehood. Alternatively, it may refer that you or someone have gone "ape". You need to calm down. The ape may also symbolize your wild inner nature, particularly your sexual nature. TOP

To see an armadillo in your dream represents your need to establish certain boundaries. You may be putting up walls between you and those who want to know you better. Alternatively, it indicates codependency. You need to be more assertive and not let others step all over you. TOP

To see an asp in your dream symbolizes misfortune, loss of honor and respect, and hostility amongst friends and loved ones. TOP

To see an ass in your dream signifies a lack of understanding. It also suggests that you will come upon many annoyances. The dream may be a metaphor for someone who is being an ass.

To see an ass carrying burdens in your dream signifies that after much patience and hard work, you will succeed in your professional and personal life. TOP

To see a badger in your dream signifies your persistence and final victory over your opponents. The dream may also be a pun on how you are badgering others or vice versa. Perhaps someone, especially someone of power is bothering you and giving you a difficult time. TOP

To see a bat in your dream symbolizes uncleanness, demons, and annoyances. Alternatively, bats represent rebirth and unrealized potential. You need to let go of old habits. Your current path is not compatible with your new growth and new goals. It may also indicate some unknown situation and how you are blindly entering into a situation or deal. You need to evaluate the facts more carefully. The dream may also been a pun on feeling "batty" or feeling crazy.

To dream of a white bat signifies death of a family member. To dream of a black bat signifies personal disaster.

To see a vampire bat in your dream suggests that a person in your life may be draining your of self-confidence and/or your resources.

According to Chinese folklore, if you see five bats in your dream, then it symbolizes good health, longevity, pace, wealth, and happiness. TOP

To see a bear in your dream represents independence, strength, death and renewal, and/or resurrection. Bears of symbolic of the cycle of life. You may also be undergoing a period of introspection and thinking. In particular, if you see a bear in your grandmother's house, then it implies that your grandmother is a dominating figure in your life.

The dream may also be a pun on "bare". Perhaps you need to bare your soul and let everything out into the open. Or there is a situation where you just need to " grin and bear it".

To dream that you are being pursued or attacked by a bear denotes anger and your uncontrolled aggression. You are feeling trapped . Perhaps you are in an threatening situation, some overwhelming obstacle or domineering and possessive relationship.

To see a polar bear in your dream signifies a reawakening. TOP

To see a beaver in your dream symbolizes energy, ambition and productivity. It is time to put your ideas into action. Hard work is necessary to achieve your own goals. TOP

To see a boar in your dream indicates that you need to look inside to find the answers and secrets about yourself and the people around you. The dream may also be a pun on " a bore" or something or someone that is "boring". TOP

To see a buffalo in your dream symbolizes survival, strength, and power. The dream may also warn that you are deviating from your life path and goals. Alternatively, the dream represents your heritage and your roots. In particular, if you see a white buffalo in your dream, then it means that your desires or wishes will be fulfilled.

To see an injured or killed buffalo, forewarns that you need to carefully think through any new ventures and projects that you are undertaking.

To see a herd of buffalo in your dream signifies tranquility and plentitude. TOP

To see a bull in your dream symbolizes stubbornness, strong will, strength, and power. The dream may be telling you that it is time to take a stand and be more assertive. Alternatively, the bull indicates a rich, prosperous, and abundant life. Consider also the metaphor, "being bull-headed". You need to learn to compromise in a situation. Or it could be a pun on something that is "bull", as in crap or worthless.

Bulls are also symbolic of repressed sexual energies, fertility and virility. To see an untamed, raging bull represents that your passions may be out of control. The bull may also represent a person in your life who is born under the Taurus sign.

To dream that you are bathing in bull's blood, represents immortality and eternal life.

To dream that you are being chased by a black bull implies that you are refusing to acknowledge your own stubbornness. TOP

To see a calf in your dream symbolizes immaturity and inexperience. You need to develop certain qualities. TOP

To see a camel in your dream denotes that you need to be more conservative you are carrying too many responsibilities, burdens and problems on your shoulders. Consider the common phrase, "the straw that broke the camel's back". You tend to hold on and cling on to your emotions instead of expressing and releasing them. Learn to forgive and forget. Alternatively, the camel represents your stamina.

To dream that you are petting a camel indicates that you are ready to let go of some of the burdens, responsibilities or emotional baggage that you are carrying around. TOP

To see a cat in your dream symbolizes an independent spirit, feminine sexuality, creativity, and power. It also represents misfortune and bad luck. The dream symbol has different significance depending on whether you are a cat lover or not. The cat could indicate that someone is being deceitful or treacherous toward you. If the cat is aggressive, then it suggests that you are having problems with the feminine aspect of yourself. If you are afraid of the cat in your dream, then it suggests that you are fearful of the feminine. The dream may be a metaphor for "cattiness" or someone who is "catty" and malicious. If you see a cat with no tail, then it signifies a loss of independence and lack of autonomy.

To dream that you cannot find your cat highlights your independent spirit. You need to allow yourself to be free and not let anyone or anything hold you back.

To dream that a cat is biting you symbolizes the devouring female. Perhaps you are taking and taking without giving. You may be expressing some fear or frustration especially when something is not going as planned. To dream that you are saving the life of a cat implies that you are reclaiming your independence and power.

To dream that a cat is scratching you suggests that you are feeling threatened.

To see a black cat in your dream indicates that you are experiencing some fear in using your psychic abilities and believing in your intuition. You may erroneously associate the black cat with evil, destruction, and bad luck. In particular, if the black cat is biting, clawing or attacking you, then the dream means that you must acknowledge what your intuition is trying to tell you. You can no longer ignore it. Do not be afraid to face the situation. If you see a white cat, then it denotes difficult times.

To dream that a cat killed a spider suggests that you are expressing your femininity in a seductive and cunning manner rather than in an overtly and almost destructive way.

To see or hear a cat being killed implies that you are lacking autonomy and independence in some area of your life. Alternatively, the dream means that you are refusing to recognize your feminine power.

To see cats playing in your dream refers to your frisky nature. You need to show your playful side.

To see a cat with green spikes suggests that jealousy is preventing you from forming meaningful relationships. You are keeping your distance from a situation or relationship. TOP

To see cattle in your dream indicates that you need to proceed with caution in some situation or relationship.

To see a herd of cattle in your dream represents a lack of individuality. You generally go with the flow of things. Alternatively, it symbolizes prosperity.

To see a stampede of cattle in your dream suggests that something in your life is out of control. TOP

To see a chipmunk in your dream suggests that you are holding on to the past and need to learn to let go. TOP

To see a cow in your dream symbolizes your passive and docile nature. You obey others without question. Alternatively, a cow represents maternal instincts or the desire to be cared for. For some cultures, the cow represents divine qualities of fertility, nourishment and motherhood.

To see the skeleton of a cow, suggests that your mother or motherly figure in your waking life is displaying a lack of emotions. She is being unresponsive to your needs.

To see a herd of cows, indicates your need to belong.

To dream that you are milking a cow, represents your willingness and drive to work hard. In the end, you will benefit from your hard work. TOP

To see a coyote in your dream denotes deception and weakness.

To dream that you are attacked by coyotes indicates that you are struggling with your own selfish needs. TOP

To see a crab in your dream signifies you perseverance and tenacity. On an extreme note, you maybe be too clingy and dependant. You are hanging on to a hopeless endeavor or relationship. Crabs are also symbolic of your irritable personality, as in the pun, being "crabby". TOP

To see a crocodile in your dream symbolizes freedom, hidden strength and power. It also forewarns of hidden danger. Someone near you is giving you bad advice and is trying to sway you into poor decisions. Because crocodiles can live in water and on land, they also represent your conscious and unconscious and the emotional and rational. Perhaps something is coming to the surface and you are on the verge of some new awareness.

Alternatively, the crocodile may be an aspect of yourself and your aggressive and "snappy" attitude. Or it may reveal that are being insincere, displaying false emotions and shedding "crocodile tears".

To dream that you are chased or bitten by a crocodile, denotes disappointments in love and in business.

To see a deer in your dream symbolizes grace, compassion, gentleness, meekness and natural beauty. It has feminine qualities and may point to the feminine aspect within yourself. It also represents independence, alertness, and virility. Consider the symbol to be a pun for someone who is "dear" to you. Alternatively, the dream represents vulnerability and naivet�. As a result, others may take advantage of you and your gullibility.

If the deer is black, then it means that you are not acknowledging or are rejecting the feminine qualities in you. You may not be in tune with your feminine side.

To dream that you kill a dear, suggests that you are trying to suppress those feminine qualities. TOP

To see a dinosaur in your dream symbolizes an outdated attitude. You may need to discard your old ways of thinking and habits.

To dream that you are being chased by a dinosaur, indicates your fears of no longer being needed or useful. Alternatively, being chased by a dinosaur, may reflect old issues that are still coming back to haunt you. TOP

To see a dog in your dream symbolizes intuition, loyalty, generosity, protection, and fidelity. The dream suggests that your strong values and good intentions will enable you to go forward in the world and bring you success. The dream dog may also represent someone in your life who exhibits these qualities. Alternatively, to see a dog in your dream indicates a skill that you may have ignored or forgotten. If the dog is vicious and/or growling, then it indicates some inner conflict within yourself. It may also indicate betrayal and untrustworthiness. If the dog is dead or dying, then it means a loss of a good friend or a deterioration of your instincts.

To dream that a dog bites you on the leg suggests that you have lost your ability to balance aspects of your life. You may be hesitant in approaching a new situation or have no desire to move forward with your goals. Alternatively, it symbolizes disloyalty.

To see a happily barking dog in your dream symbolizes pleasures and social activity. You are being accepted into some circle. If the dog is barking ferociously, then it represents your habit of making demands on people and controlling situations around you. Are you "barking" too many orders? Alternatively, it could also indicate unfriendly companions.

To see a dog chasing its tail or running around in circles in your dream implies that you are not handling a situation in an effective way. You are spending too much time on fruitless labor.

To dream that you are buying a dog indicates your tendency to buy your friends or buy compliments and favors. Alternatively, it suggest a need for you to find companionship. If you are being guided by a dog, then it suggests that you are having difficulties in navigating out of a situation or problem.

To dream that you give or send your dog away indicates that the decisions and choices you are making now may be misinterpreted as disloyalty. You have to do what is right for you and not worry about what others think of the decision. Alternatively, it signifies rejection of friendship.

To dream that you are dre ssing up your dog signifies your attempts to cover up your own character flaws and habits.

To see a black colored dog in your dream symbolizes the shadow aspect of a friend. The dark side of someone close to you is being revealed and you are able to see through to their true intentions.

To dream that a dog is eating a snake implies that a close friend is trying to prevent you from making a bad decision.

To see a dog with two heads in your dream means that you are hyper vigilant about your surroundings. On the other hand, the dream may also mean you need to be more aware of what is around you.

Also consider the notions associated with the word dog, such as loyalty ("man's best friend") and to be "treated like a dog". TOP

To see a dolphin in your dream symbolizes spiritual guidance, intellect, mental attributes and emotional trust. The dream is usually an inspirational one, encouraging you to utilize your mind to its capacity and move upward in life. Alternatively, it suggests that a line of communication has been established between the conscious and unconscious aspects of yourself. Dolphins represent your willingness and ability to explore and navigate through your emotions.

To dream that you are riding a dolphin, represents your optimism and social altruism.

To dream that a dolphin is dying, indicates feeling of despair. You are feeling disconnected. TOP

To see a donkey in your dream represents your stubbornness and unyielding personality. You are unwilling to cooperate with others. The donkey also symbolizes menial work. You may be feeling overburdened or stressed. If the donkey is dead, then it denotes that your party hearty attitude will lead to unrestrained immorality. Alternatively, the donkey is representative of the United States democratic party. Consider your personal associations and feelings about the the democrats.

To dream that you fall off or are thrown from a donkey, signifies separation and disharmony in love.

To dream that you are kicked by a donkey, suggests that you are afraid of being caught in some illicit activity. There is a cloud of suspicion over you.

To dream that you are leading a donkey by a halter, signifies your leadership abilities. You have the gift of convincing people to see things your way. TOP

To see a dragon in your dream signifies that you let yourself get carried away by your passion. This kind of behavior may lead you into the hands of enemies. You need to exercise some self-control.

In the eastern cultures, dragons are seen as spiritual creatures symbolizing good luck and fortune.

To dream that you are a dragon and breathing fire, suggests that you are using your anger to get your own way. TOP

To see a dromedary in your dream signifies unexpected gains and honor. You are a giving person and always there to lend a helping hand. TOP

To see an eel in your dream indicates that you have issues with commitment. It also means that you have problems holding on to things. Consider the phrase "slippery as an eel" to mean someone who escapes responsibility or culpability. Alternatively, the eel may be a phallic symbol and thus have erotic connotations. TOP

To see an elephant in your dream indicates that you need to be more patient or more understanding of others. Or perhaps there is a memory that you are holding on to for too long. You need to let go of the past. The elephant is also a symbol of power, strength, faithfulness and intellect. Alternatively, the elephant's introverted personality may be a reflection of your own personality. In particular, if you see a white elephant, then it symbolizes royalty.

To dream that you are riding an elephant, indicates that you are in control of your unconscious and aspects that you were once afraid of.

To dream that you are afraid of the elephant, suggests that there is an enormous problem that you are afraid to confront.

To dream that you are an elephant, suggests that you need to make your opinions and views known. You need to be more vocal and voice your ideas. Express yourself. Alternatively, dreaming that you are an elephant may be reflective of your conservative views. The elephant is the symbol of the United States Republican party. Perhaps you are sharing the same views as the Republican party. TOP

To see a fawn in your dream symbolizes true friends and faithfulness in love. TOP

To see a ferret in your dream symbolizes distrust and suspicion of others. The dream may also be a pun on searching. If the ferret in your dream is white, then it is highlighting or amplifying some trust issues in your waking life. TOP

To see fish swimming in your dream signifies insights from your subconscious mind. Thus to catch a fish represents insights which have been brought to the surface. Alternatively, a fish swimming in your dream may symbolize conception. Some women dream of swimming fish when they get pregnant. The fish is also an ancient symbol of Christianity and Christian beliefs. Consider the common phrases "like a cold fish", "fish out of water" or something that is "fishy" about a situation. It may also imply a slippery or elusive situation. Perhaps your dream could be telling you that "there are plenty of other fish in the sea", with regards to some relationship issue.

To dream that you are eating fish symbolizes your beliefs, spirituality, luck, energy and nourishment. It is food for the soul.

To dream of cooking fish indicates that you are incorporating your new realizations with your spiritual feelings and knowledge.

To dream that you are cleaning fish suggests that you are altering your emotional expression in a way that will be presentable to others. You are censoring yourself and not expressing how you completely feel.

To see fish bones in your dream refers to old insights, thoughts or views that have already been brought to light. You have processed these ideas and gained knowledge from it.

To dream that a small fish is attacking a bigger fish implies that you should not underestimate someone's ability because of their size. Consider whether you sympathize with the small fish or with the big fish for further significance of your dream. TOP

To see a foal in your dream signifies new undertakings and emergence of fresh energy. TOP

To see a fox in your dream represents insight, cleverness, cunningness and resourcefulness. Perhaps the dream is telling you that you need to exhibit more of these qualities in your waking life. Or that you need to conceal your thoughts and be more discrete about some situation. The fox may also symbolize someone in your waking life who is sly and sneaky. Alternatively, seeing a fox in your dream indicates a period of isolation or loneliness. You need to take this time to ponder some issue or reflect upon your life. The dream could be a metaphor for someone who is a "fox", as in a foxy lady.

To dream that a fox is flying into your window means that you need to be careful with who you trust. Someone in your waking life is up to no good. TOP

To see a frog in your dream represents a potential for change or the unexpected. The frog may be a prince in disguise and thus, signify transformation, renewal or rebirth. Alternatively, the frog symbolizes uncleanness or fertility.

To see frogs leaping in your dream indicate your lack of commitment. You have a tendency to jump from one thing to another. Alternatively, it may suggest that you are taking major steps toward some goal. It parallels your progress.

To dream that you are catching a frog, signifies your carelessness concerning your health.

To hear the sounds of a frog in your dream indicates that you have not accomplished what you wanted.

To eat a frog in your dream represents some unsavory or unpleasant task that you need to perform. If you swallow a whole frog in your dream, then there is something that you need to do or say, that is literally difficult to swallow. Consider the phrase "a frog in your throat" to suggest that you are unable to speak. You have lost your voice. TOP

To see a giraffe in your dream suggests that you need to consider the overall picture. Take a broader view on your life and where it is headed. The dream may serve to indicate how you are "sticking your neck out" for someone.

To dream that you are riding a giraffe, represents your desire to stand up amongst the crowd. You want attention, but aren't getting it.

To dream that a giraffe is running implies that you are avoiding the truth. It also suggests that you saw something that you shouldn't have seen. TOP

To see a goat in your dream represents your lack of judgment and your gullibility. Alternatively, goats are symbolic of sexuality, sexual desire, and lechery. Also consider the associations with the goat as in "scapegoat" or "getting someone's goat". Do you feel that you have been blamed for someone else's deed?

To dream that a billy goat butts you, forewarns of deceit, underhandedness, and lies. TOP

To see a goldfish in your dream signifies, wealth, success, and pleasant adventures. Alternatively, goldfish represents some important emotional matter or valuable insight. TOP

To see a gorilla in your dream suggests that you may be too "over the top" in your behavior. Perhaps you are compensating for your rigidity and stiffness in your waking life. Alternatively, the gorilla symbolizes your primitive impulses, wild nature and repressed sexual energy. TOP

To see a greyhound in your dream symbolizes fortune, pleasant surprises, and friendships. TOP

To see a hare in your dream represents swiftness, transformation or self-sacrifice. What are you giving up or sacrificing in your waking life? It may also symbolize your rash behavior or cleverness. TOP

To see a hippopotamus in your dream symbolizes your aggressive nature and your hidden strengths. You have more influence and power than you realize. Alternatively, it indicates that you are being territorial. Perhaps someone is overstepping their boundaries.

To see a group of hippopotamuses in your dream suggests that you need to escape from the daily grind and relax. TOP

To see a horse in your dream symbolizes strength, power, endurance, virility and sexual prowess. It also represents a strong, physical energy. You need to tame the wild forces within. The dream may also be a pun that you are "horsing around". Alternatively, to see a horse in your dream indicates that you need to be less arrogant and "get off your high horse". If the horse has two heads (one on each end), then it implies that you are being pulled into two different directions. Perhaps your strength or power is being divided. Or you are confused about some sexual matter.

To see a black or dark horse in your dream signifies mystery, wildness, and the unknown. You are taking a chance or a gamble at some unknown situation. It may even refer to occult forces. If the horse is white, then it signifies purity, prosperity and good fortunes. To dream that you are being chased by a white horse, may be a pun on chaste. Perhaps you are having difficulties dealing with issues of intimacy and sexuality.

To see a dead horse in your dream indicates that something in your life that initially offered you strength is now gone. This may refer to a relationship or situation. Consider the phrase "beating a dead horse" to indicate that you may have maximized the usefulness of a certain circumstance.

To see a herd of wild horses in your dream signifies a sense of freedom and lack of responsibilities and duties. Perhaps it may also indicate your uncontrolled emotions. If you are riding a wild horse, then it represents unrestrained sexual desires.

To dream that you are riding a horse suggests that you are in a high position or position of power. Alternatively, it indicates that you will achieve success through underhanded means. You lack integrity. If you are riding a horse that is out of control, then it means that you are being carried away by your passions.

To see an armored or medieval horse in your dream, refers to your fierceness, aggression, power and/or rigidity. You may be too confrontational. Alternatively, you may be trying to protect yourself from unconscious material or sexual desires that is emerging.

T o dream that you are bathing a horse represents a renewal of strength and vigor. You are experiencing a burst of energy in some aspect of your life.

To dream about a talking horse refers to higher knowledge. Consider the significance of what the horse is saying. If the horse is black, then the message may be coming from your subconscious. If the horse is blue, then the message may be of sadness. You or someone is looking for help, but don't know how to go about getting it. The dream may also a metaphor for the idiom "straight from the horse's mouth". TOP

To see a hyena in your dream indicates greed or uncleanness. It also suggests that you are overwhelmed with responsibilities. You feel that someone is relying on you too much. Alternatively, a hyena represents someone in your waking life who has a sense of humor or someone who is laughing at you. TOP

9. Conclusion

Since Aristotle’s biological works comprise almost a third of his writings that have come down to us, and since these writings may have occurred early in his career, it is very possible that the influence of the biological works upon Aristotle’s other writings is considerable. Aristotle’s biological works (so often neglected) should be brought to the fore, not only in the history of biology, but also as a way of understanding some of Aristotle’s non-biological writings.