Understanding Animal Symbology Used on Urns

Pink urn with colourful unicorn head on left, angel urn on rightIn today’s urn market, you can come across so many different types of urns that it can be daunting to know which one to get. Different materials, styles and symbols can be mixed and matched, so how do you know what you should be looking for? While the main factors when deciding what urn to purchase will usually be the price and material, an often overlooked aspect of urns are the symbology found on them. This article will take a look at different animal symbology that can be found in today's urns and which ones would be most suitable for you and your loved one. 

Why symbolism is important

Symbols can be found everywhere in today's society, particularly when it comes to sentimental and emotional items or ideas. Symbols are essentially a way of representing an idea, object or relationship. They are important as they can represent complex ideas in touching, simplistic ways which helps avoid the complexity and headaches of using large amounts of text. While symbols are inherently ambiguous which can lead to misinterpretations, at Eternal Urns we believe that the meaning is personal to the individual and any interpretation is valid. To impart a piece of art onto the urn, and to have your close friends and family understand and take part in the story that was your loved ones life is a truly special experience. It's a way of telling a whole story while uttering no words at all. As symbols are ambiguous in meaning, another main factor you should consider when making a selection is if your loved one appreciated the animal that's to be paired with their urn.

Animal symbolism commonly found in urns


Birds are a really common symbol found in urns. Usually painted or engraved, they can either come as common doves or other species, such as owls or eagles. Bird urns are a great symbol for a loved one's afterlife. This is because birds represent freedom, hope and new beginnings. These urns can be especially important for those who believe in reincarnation. Other types of birds commonly found include hummingbirds, owls, eagles and cardinals. Hummingbird Urns are perfect for those who were intelligent, beautiful or devoted as they are closely linked to those traits. Hummingbirds are also fierce fighters and defenders of their territories, which make them a great symbol for mothers and protectors. Owl Urns are perfect for those who lived a long life, as owls are often associated with wisdom. They can be a great reminder of how your loved one helped those around them in difficult times of their life. Eagle Urns are great for religious people, and loved ones that value honesty, truth and majesty. As eagles roam the sky, they are thought to have a special connection with god. Cardinal Urns are a beautiful symbol for a loving couple, as they represent devotion, love and courtship. These beautiful birds are best represented on companion urns. 


Other types of animals and creatures can also be found on urns, such as horses, dolphins, butterflies, wolves and even elephants.. Horse Urns represent independence, freedom and endurance. They would make a great urn for someone who was a free spirit in life. Dolphin Urns are thought to symbolise fun, joyfulness and intelligence and are quite suitable at representing someone who was always up for a fun adventure. Butterfly Urns are a particularly special symbol when it comes to funerary urns, as they represent transformation, hope and faith. They are a beautiful way of saying goodbye to your loved one, knowing that they are heading for a new and better world in the afterlife. Wolf Urns are the perfect choice for someone who was a loyal guardian and protector in life. People such as fathers, mothers, uncles and stepfathers that gave their all just to give us a chance at a better life are perfectly symbolised through a touching wolf urn. Elephant Urns are an awesome symbol of nobility, wisdom and protection. These large, majestic animals are a great way of  guiding your loved one towards their afterlife.

Stuffed animal options

If you found a different animal to symbolise your loved one that is not commonly found in modern urns, then your best option might be a Stuffed Animal Urn. These are urns that hold a small amount of ash which are placed inside the stuffed animal, and are a great option for people who don't like the look of an urn in their homes. Some urns, usually keepsake urns, can even be placed inside a special stuffed animal such as a Teddy Bear, so the possibilities are almost endless.

Mythical beasts

Not all symbols reflect animals found in reality, but rather ones only found in fantasy. The most symbolic mythical beasts are commonly dragons, unicorns and mermaids, and are a fantastic way to personalise your urn. Even biblical entities such as angels make a great addition to urns. Dragon Urns are a symbol of power, change and spirituality. Dragons are a mythical creature that have even appeared on national flags, such as the Welsh flag. Unicorn Urns symbolise purity and grace. A majestic creature that represents all that is good in the world, and reminds us that we should strive to be our best selves. Mermaid Urns signify life and fertility within the ocean, which would be a perfect urn for someone who had an affinity for the sea. Angel Urns symbolises innocence and purity as they are incorruptible by evil. They make a touching reminder of the innocence of those who have passed too soon. They are also a perfect addition for any christian family. 

Symbols are ever prevalent in our society, and many symbols come from our affinity and exposure to nature. From birds to mythical beasts and anything in between, special meanings can be found in these symbols and used in a unique way for our loved ones. In these difficult times, it is important to remember who they were and how best to represent them. Symbology through the use of animals is a great way of achieving this representation, and will make your loved ones final resting place truly special. As Australia's largest urn store, Eternal Urns has an extensive range of the best quality animal themed urns available, so check out our range today.