Squirrel Tattoos: Symbolism, Meanings & More

Squirrel Tattoos: Symbolism, Meanings & More

Fuzzy woodland creatures with iconic bushy tails are beloved in media, books, and when people see them in nature. Squirrels are known for their cute eyes and ability to store food for the winter. Some people love these creatures so much they even want the image tattooed on their bodies.

Have you thought about getting a squirrel tattoo? Maybe you know someone who has a tattoo like this and you would like to discuss it further with them. Either way, let’s dive into the meaning of these tattoos!


What is the History of Squirrel Tattoos?

There is no significant history of tattoos of these animals with strong meanings and culture. Individuals who decide to get a tattoo of a squirrel are not alluding to historical events or the historic meaning of squirrels.

That being said, squirrels do have significant meanings to some cultures, so getting a tattoo of this creature could have individual or cultural meaning to someone.

The origin of the word squirrel comes from the Greek words for “shadow” and squirrel, so a tattoo of these furry creatures could allude to the shadowy icon.


What Do Squirrel Tattoos Symbolize?

These tattoos can symbolize many things. The depth of the symbolism will depend on the personal experiences of the person who has the tattoo and their lived experiences.

In Native American culture, squirrels have been noted for their noisy, somewhat mischievous behavior. Legends involving them have the critters spreading gossip and causing trouble. People familiar with those stories could use a squirrel tattoo to symbolize curiosity and gossip.

Other Native American stories praise squirrels for their foresight to store food for the winter. They can represent a warning of future distress. People concerned with ecological preservation can similarly draw on the idea of stewardship and planning for the future.

In many spiritual paths, squirrels are symbols of abundance. This comes from their storage of nuts and other food in preparation for the winter.

Some people see squirrels and their connection with abundance as a connection to fertility. These fuzzy creatures also have large families, which could also tie them to symbols of fertility.

In many Eastern cultures, societies are seen as related to rats so they are also seen as symbols of smart and cunning animals. They can also represent a child-like playfulness, which makes sense as they are very energetic little creatures.

In Celtic mythology, squirrels have been treated as messengers for Gods. This connects also with the idea that they are creatures who gossip and communicate to spread the news.


What Do Squirrel Tattoos Mean?

Squirrel tattoos do not have one meaning alone. They do, however, have several common meanings for people who get them. In general, those reasons relate to the adorable personalities of these cute woodland creatures.

Many people get squirrel tattoos just because they love the animals. They love the cute noses and sweet eyes. They also love the bushy tails that have become so iconic for the cute creatures.

Some people get squirrel tattoos because the animal means something to them personally. It could have been the spirit animal of someone they love who has passed on. It could have been a pet or a favorite animal of someone they hold dear.

Squirrel tattoos often hold meaning from the personality traits of the animals. For example, squirrel tattoos can mean that the person with the tattoo is lively and energetic. The busy little creatures are always climbing, running, and exploring, so many people associate them with liveliness.

Many people who love connecting with nature see squirrels as a symbol of the outdoors. Tattoos of woodland rodents can mean that the person loves the Earth, hiking, camping, and sightseeing.

For people who see squirrels as a symbol of fertility, a squirrel could signify that the person has struggled with fertility. They may have overcome this challenge or they may be hoping to have children in the future. As that issue is a heartfelt topic for many, they may want a tattoo to commemorate their struggle.

A squirrel tattoo could mean that someone is a careful planner. The rodents are famous for storing nuts and hiding them for colder seasons. For many, this behavior has made squirrels a symbol of careful planning and foresight. If that is a signature trait of the individual or a trait they seek, they may want a tattoo to commemorate that.

The creativity required to find unique places to hide nuts has also become a symbol for these cute woodland animals. People passionate about creative pursuits may seek a tattoo with a bushy-tailed creature to demonstrate their dedication to creativity.

Many people get tattoos of these creatures simply because they are cute! When selecting your tattoo design, whatever the meaning is for you, make sure you are happy with the physical appearance of the squirrel.


Where Do Squirrel Tattoos Usually Go?

Squirrel tattoos are particularly popular for people to place on their arms or legs. The reason behind this could be because the arms and legs offer a large enough canvas to get the details of the animal. Arms and legs also could pay homage to the climbing power of these small rodents.

When people get tattoos of squirrels on their arms, they often place the tattoo on the forearm rather than the upper arm, but some people will opt for the shoulder instead.

People getting tattoos of the animals on their legs usually get the tattoo on their calf. This location means the tattoo is on the back of the lower leg rather than the thigh or shin.


Characteristics and Styles of Squirrel Tattoos

Most people with squirrel tattoos get fairly large tattoos. The inked space is usually about 3-5 inches across.

It is more common for people to get tattoos of the animals in a rich brown color, but you will occasionally see a tattoo with a black and white squirrel instead.

Usually, the squirrel is featured holing a nut, particularly an acorn. Sometimes, though, it is surrounded by leaves or other natural symbols. The animals always have bright eyes and large tails, as those are the most identifiable parts.



Squirrel tattoos do not have significant historical meaning, but the animals do have significance in some squirrels. In general, squirrel tattoos represent liveliness, planning, curiosity, and nature.

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