What Do Dreams About Owls Mean?

4 Min Read | By Ellen Conning

Last Modified 20 March 2023   First Added 20 March 2023

This article was written and reviewed in line with our editorial policy.

Owls are amazing, beautiful creatures that have captured the human imagination for millennia. Whether through ancient Greece hailing the owl as the symbol of Athena or through modern mystery associated with the flying fowl, there’s no denying that they symbolise wisdom, mystery and intuition. This means seeing them in dreams can be an auspicious reminder, a way our brain tries to nudge us down the right path.

Let’s discuss the different variations of the dream and their meanings together…

The Dream:

It’s night, and you’re walking down a path through a strange place. You’re alone; the dark feels encroaching, almost swallowing you whole. There’s a tinge of fear to your steps when suddenly a golden owl swoops ahead of you, lighting the way. Suddenly, the fear is gone, and the dawn begins to break as you make your way down the path towards your goal.

Day breaks, your dream ends, and you have a sense of peace.

Variations Of The Dream:

Owl dreams can vary, but when it comes to their meaning, often, it’s the type of owl that holds the key:

  • A barn owl is a sign of future fortunes
  • A common owl is a sign to refocus on yourself in life
  • A snowy owl is a symbol of peace and happiness in the future
  • A great horned owl symbolises a need to share more in life as a whole
  • A true owl is a potential sign of insomnia

Common Meanings Of Owl Dreams:

As you can tell, there’s a lot of variation in the meaning behind dreams about owls. However, one common theme is that of inner wisdom. Similar to prophetic dreams, there’s a lot of reflection to be done with this symbol. Going through a change in life can mean you’re looking for guidance, and an owl guiding you through your dream can be your mind showing you can get yourself through this experience. Trust your instincts and step forward.

Another common meaning is change: Owls are nocturnal and can mean you’re going through a period of darkness in your life. These beautiful birds can see through the night, and just as they can make their way, you will also find yourself on the other side of this difficulty.

Two owlets sitting in a tree at night, surrounded by foliage.

Common Variations Of Seeing Owls In Dreams

Dreaming About Seeing An Owl At Night

Night represents a fear of the unknown or a need to trust yourself. The owl is the sign of wisdom that you need to navigate through this.

Dreaming About Seeing An Owl During The Day

An owl during the day is an odd sight and could indicate that you need to be a bit more observant in your day-to-day life.

Dreaming About Seeing An Owl Staring At You

This potentially represents a need to confront something in your life or that you’re feeling anxious about something.

Answering The Dream:

If you’re having dreams about owls, it’s an excellent time to take a step back and reflect on yourself. Consider what emotions have been steering your life and any events that have impacted you recently. Then, consider the details: what was the owl doing, and what did it look like? Answering this will help you begin to find crucial clues.

As a follow-up, the clear sign is that you need wisdom and guidance in life. Take the time to get that help, whether through seeking advice from friends, family, or even a therapist.

Notable Appearances Of Owls In Popular Culture:

Owls have long captured human imaginations, which is why they show up so often in popular culture. Greek mythology puts the owl as the symbol of Athena, and to this day, you can find various owl-related symbols around Athens. Other cultures also have an optimistic view of owls, such as across many Native American tribes and in Chinese mythology.

It’s not just wisdom, however: owls can also be associated with the spookier side of things, such as witches. Often seen as the deliverer of messages or omens, they hold importance in the world of scares. Halloween wouldn’t be the same without their tell-tale hoot. Horror movies, like The Fourth Kind, are great media examples. A white owl, often symbolising death, reappears to the characters throughout.

There’s also an abundance of owl-y memes online, with Superb Owl being one great example. Whether they’re prestigious, helpful, ominous, or goofy, there’s no doubt that owls are beloved in pop culture and media alike.


Curious about dream meanings? Want to learn more? Delve into our Dream Encyclopaedia, full of information from A-Z on so many different dreams.

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