Dreaming of Rats: Discover the Spiritual Meaning and Interpretation

Close-up of a rat
© iStock.com/Sonsedska

Written by Kirstin Harrington

Updated: October 3, 2023

Share on:


Dreaming of Rats infographic
Dreaming of Rats infographic

Rat dreams are reliable warnings to get ready for either extremely good or extremely bad things. It all depends on your general attitude toward rats and the environment of your dream. 

In this article, we’ll explain how to determine whether dreams about rats are a sign of impending good things or a warning of impending peril. 

In any event, before you believe a rat dream, we advise you to read about all of its probable interpretations. That’s because having a strong belief in a dream interpretation could have a big impact on your life.

Why Do People Dream?

Although scientists are still working to understand the precise meaning and function of dreams, there are many ideas as to why we dream. REM sleep, the stage of sleep where dreams take place, is also known to be very active, with increased blood flow and electrical activity.

According to one idea, the brain processes and organizes memories and emotions from the day by dreaming. This concept is referred to as “memory consolidation.” 

Another hypothesis holds that dreams might be used to process unaddressed emotional problems or traumatic experiences. The notion behind this is known as “emotional control.” 

A third hypothesis holds that dreams have no particular purpose and are merely a random result of the brain’s activity while we sleep. The reality probably lies between these theories.

Dreaming during REM sleep

REM sleep, the stage of sleep where dreams take place, is also known to be very active, with increased blood flow and electrical activity.


Spiritual Symbolism

Rats are linked to negative ideas in the spiritual world. Any household should not have wild rats because they are generally considered to be a sign of unsanitary circumstances. Wild mice and rats enjoy damp, gloomy environments. As a result, you can frequently find them in crawl spaces, basements, garbage bins, sewers, and drains.

If you encounter a rat in your dream, you likely have anxiety or worry about something. They may also represent someone who is envious of you and might do you harm. When a rodent appears in your dream, you’re unconsciously restless due to a monotonous lifestyle. 

Last but not least, you can be avoiding your emotions or squandering your potential.

It should be obvious that the spiritual connotations of dreams concerning rats are typically not positive. But their interpretations also differ quite a bit. 

How can you determine the genuine significance of the rat(s) you have seen in your dream, then? Read below about the most frequent rat dreams people have! Choose the one that most closely resembles what you observed and apply it to your own situation.

Rats are linked to negative ideas in the spiritual world

Rats are linked to negative ideas in the spiritual world as they are generally considered to be a sign of unsanitary circumstances.


Common Types of Rat Dreams

Below are some of the most common types of dreams involving these pesky rodents. See if your recent dreams are on the list to help determine what your sleeping mind could be trying to tell you!

The Color of the Rat in Your Dream

A black rat in your dream indicates a negative sign. The majority of dream specialists believe that black rats represent treachery. Somebody you trust may be engaged in actions that could harm you and has bad intentions for you. It may be a friend, relative, or work associate. This is especially true when a black rat appears in your nightmares and makes you feel intimidated. 

Black rats are a sign of betrayal and internal problems. If you have a dream about a black rat and it feels unsettling but does not frighten you, your subconscious mind is pulling at unresolved unpleasant emotions.

White rat dreams frequently have a good connotation because of this. If you see big white rats in your dreams, you’ll soon experience excellent luck. It could take the shape of money, connections, a new job, or achieving your life goals. 

White rats are a sign that you’ll soon discover real love if you’re single. And those who are married or in relationships will soon experience a growth that is beneficial and more meaningful. 

A dangerous white mouse in your dream denotes the presence of an adversary nearby. Or perhaps you’ll face a number of challenges on your existing path. But the fur’s whiteness stands for triumph.

White rat is a dream is considered good luck

Seeing a white rat in your dreams is believed to be a sign that you’ll experience good luck or if single, that you’ll soon discover real love.


Dreaming of Dead Rats

In your psyche, a dead rat represents closure. A relationship or another crucial aspect of your life could terminate permanently soon. 

It can be an untrustworthy partnership or your tolerance for unfair behavior. Whatever it is that you end up losing, it will benefit you. Consequently, it is a good sign. 

Dead rats also represent the conclusion of your current troubles, in addition to this. It serves as a reminder that tough times will pass if you’re going through a rough patch in life, working hard to accomplish a goal, or being torn between two options. You’ll succeed in getting through it!

On the other hand, a dead rat can indicate a medical issue. If you observe a sick rat that ultimately passes away or a dead rat that makes you feel helpless and sorry for it, you might get sick soon. 

According to some dream specialists, dead rats are a metaphor for possible internalized guilt and anxiety. Your inner self will appear as a dead rat to remind you of the repercussions if you hold secrets or engage in behavior that is against your moral code.

Rat Bites You in a Dream

Rat bites in dreams are a blatant sign of dishonesty. You are being deceived or lied to by a close friend or relative. You might be overly open to this individual if the rodents in your dream gnaw or bite your hand. Alternatively, you likely freely share your possessions. 

You may feel the need to run in a rat race if you notice rodents gnawing your feet. Perhaps you consider yourself a loser because you’re not living your life to the fullest and are therefore estranged from your true calling.

Rat bites in a dream might mean dishonesty

If a rat bites you in your dream it could be a sign of dishonesty in your life.

©Heiko Kiera/Shutterstock.com

Being Chased by a Rat

Rats stand for tenacity and intelligence. Because mice and rats have comparable survival strategies to humans, they are commonly used as test subjects in research experiments. 

Therefore, if you see a rat following you in your dream, it means that you are in defense mode because you feel threatened by someone in the present. They are making you feel outsmarted. Or they’re causing you to worry about your income or security. 

If you’re the one chasing the rat, it often suggests you’re attempting to market something or are secretly considering starting a business. It will bring success and tremendous gains in both scenarios.

Do Rats Dream?

Rats do indeed dream. According to studies, rats go through a stage of sleep termed Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep, which is when dreams take place. Experts have seen electrical patterns of activity in the rat brains during REM sleep. 

These resemble those seen in animals including human beings and other mammals. This shows that during this period of sleep, rats are probably having vivid, trance-like mental states. Humans and other mammals share this in common.

Final Thoughts

You can deal with any potential negativity and concerns that rats may represent in dreams by acquiring new knowledge or by pursuing spiritual awakenings. 

You could have a hard time empathizing with the drawbacks if you keep rats as pets. But it’s essential to pay close attention to your dreams if you don’t have many rat-related ones. 

Similarly, if you frequently have dreams about rats and you don’t feel strongly about them (positively or negatively), try not to worry too much about them. According to the dream dictionary, something that keeps showing up in your dreams repeatedly has little significance.

What Does the Bible Say About Rats?

Open Bible

The Bible names rats, mice, moles and lizards to be unclean.


Just like many other animals out there, rats have a lot of different symbolism surrounding them, and this is despite the cliches of housewives jumping on chairs to avoid them and even elephants being afraid of them in fables.

But when it comes to the Holy Bible, it takes a much more strict tone when it comes to rats.

Specifically in the book of Leviticus, chapter eleven, verses 29 through 40, rats (with moles, mice, and lizards) are said to be unclean. Touching the animals would make you unclean as well. In fact, anything a dead rat body touched would be considered the same for a time.

The verses go on to give details about what to do with items that have come in contact with rats. There are rules about cleaning, rules about throwing things out, and then rules about waiting until evening to make sure they are clean.

Share this post on:
About the Author

Kirstin is a writer at A-Z Animals primarily covering animals, news topics, fun places, and helpful tips. Kirstin has been writing on a variety of topics for over five years. She has her real estate license, along with an associates degree in another field. A resident of Minnesota, Kirstin treats her two cats (Spook and Finlay) like the children they are. She never misses an opportunity to explore a thrift store with a coffee in hand, especially if it’s a cold autumn day!

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the AZ Animals editorial team.