What Does It Mean When You Dream About Rats?

By: Lisa Lindquist // Updated: December 8, 2021  

While we're dreaming, our minds can sometimes conjure up some pretty unusual images. So what does it mean when you dream about rats?

While there is no one correct answer, you can get a sense of some of the meanings by exploring these common dream scenarios.

What Does It Mean When You Dream About Rats or Mice?

The symbolism of rats and mice in dreams is complex and can sometimes be linked with the dreamer's fears, anxieties, and expectations.

A mouse or rat can indicate you're feeling insecure, threatened, or anxious about an issue. 

Rats and mice may signify feelings of being chased, cornered, or hunted like prey. 

You might also think that your competitors want to take something from you, such as your job, time, or energy.

There are also positive associations with rodents in dreams. Sometimes they can represent fertility, new beginnings, and the ability to take advantage of opportunities. 

They can also indicate that you're taking action in your life and pushing forward.

The Spiritual Symbolism of a Rat

The rat is a spiritual symbol representing change, adaptability, and survival. 

Rats are often associated with the dark side of life, such as disease and poverty. 

However, rats are also capable of great courage and strength, survive in difficult environments, and quickly adapt to changes. Rats are also known for their intelligence and resourcefulness.

Rats often appear in dreams when the dreamer is going through a spiritual awakening or experiencing a period of change. 

They may indicate a period of transformation, instability, and uncertainty. 

Rats can also represent the repressed parts of the self that are ready to be released.

Dreaming of Rats – Different Scenarios & Its Meanings

Do you ever dream of rats? If so, what does it mean to you?

There are several reasons people dream about rats, and the meaning can be significant. Here are some examples and what they may mean to you.

Dream About Killing Rats

A dream about killing rats can suggest that you feel invaded or threatened by someone or something. 

Alternatively, this dream could represent some fear or anxiety that you are experiencing in your life.

It could also suggest that you feel anger or hostility towards someone.

This dream can also be a sign that you are strong-willed and ready to get rid of a problem or something that is causing stress in your life. It may be time for you to cut out bad relationships for your emotional well-being.

Dream About Rats Attacking You

When you dream about being attacked by rats, it can represent fear or anxiety. 

The rats may symbolize something bothering you, such as a problem or situation you feel powerless against.

Alternatively, the rats may be a representation of some kind of nasty or dirty aspect of your life that you'd like to get rid of, such as anger, hatred, or envy. This dream can also be a symbol of something you feel is invading your personal space.

Another possibility is that your unconscious is trying to tell you that there is a "rat" in your life, meaning someone untrustworthy or harmful.

Dream About Dead Rats

If you dream of a rat that has died, it likely means you have feelings of guilt or regret. You might feel burdened with a responsibility that you're not fulfilling. 

It could signal the end of some part of your life, such as a phase or relationship.

If there are many dead rats in your dream, this symbolizes a significant loss or some unfinished business that you need to take care of. You may feel helpless in your dream, and the rat represents your lack of power.

Sometimes dead rodents in dreams represent some kind of deviant behavior having to do with whatever is most repulsive to the dreamer. Usually, it's rooted in guilt or regret. 

Dream About a Rat Biting You

If you dream about a rat biting you, this may come from feelings of guilt or shame. You may feel that there's something wrong with you or that you don't match your expectations.

To dream that a rat is biting you could be a sign that something negative is taking hold of your life. You may want to avoid the person or situation before it harms you further.

A rat biting you in your dream could also symbolize that someone is trying to harm you or that you are feeling threatened by someone. 

For example, the rat could represent something negative in your life and might be a metaphor for some harmful habit or addiction, whether physical or mental.

Dream About Rats in Your House

If you dream about rats in your house, it could symbolize feeling vulnerable or exposed. 

The rats may be interpreted as representing someone or something that is threatening your security. 

It may be a sign that someone in your waking life is not as they seem.

It could also represent repressed emotions that are now coming to the surface and symbolize your fear of what will happen if those emotions are allowed to see the light of day.

Alternatively, the rats could be a metaphor for some kind of "rat race" you feel trapped in or overwhelmed by. You may feel you're constantly being pressured to keep up with others or that you're in a competition you can never win.

Dream About Rats Crawling on You

If you dream about rats crawling on you, this is often a sign that you feel insecure or restless, but you can't pinpoint the reason. 

The dream may be a way of highlighting your worries and drawing your attention to the fact that something is not quite right.

Because rats are often seen as pests, dreaming about them crawling on you can be seen as a sign that you feel you're being overrun with problems or that something is making you feel nervous or uneasy. 

It may also be a sign that you're feeling overwhelmed by demands or responsibilities.

Alternatively, the dream could be a way of highlighting your feelings of vulnerability due to a recent event. Maybe you had an argument with a friend or relative, which has left you feeling exposed.

Dream of a Rat Jumping on You

When a rat jumps on you in a dream, this may have to do with a feeling of overwhelming fear. 

The rat can represent worries and anxieties that may plague you. Typically, the rat jumps on the dreamer to get their attention.

This would suggest that whatever is scaring you in waking life has not gone away and will continue to present more problems if not addressed. The dream is urging you to confront these fears head-on.

A rat jumping on you may also suggest that you feel other people are overstepping their boundaries or that someone is coming on too strong.

Dreaming of Different Rats

What does it mean when you dream about rats? 

Rats often represent something that is making your life difficult. The color or size of the rat in your dream may correlate with the type of problem causing you stress.

The type of rat can represent different things depending on context and what else is going on in the dream.

Dream About a White Rat

A white rat can be a symbol of purity and cleanliness. If you dream about a white rat, it means that you have a positive approach to life. 

It can also mean a fresh start, renewal, and a completely new outlook on life. 

This dream may be a sign that you are heading in the right direction.

White rat dreams are also associated with good luck and being rewarded for your hard work or efforts. If you dream of a white rat and pick it up, this implies that you will be successful in any new venture you undertake.

A white rat running away from you in your dream might indicate that your outlook on life is negative. You may be anticipating the worst and focusing on what isn't working instead of what is.

Dream of a Black Rat

A black rat may represent an unwanted guest that shows up unexpectedly, meaning you feel surrounded by people or things that interfere with your goals and plans.

It may also mean that you are being sabotaged by people who have no respect for your personal boundaries or privacy and that you feel you have no control over the situation.

If the black rat is running away from you, it means that you're successfully avoiding something or someone that is causing you problems.

Dream About Brown Rats

It could mean many things when you dream about brown rats, but it's generally a positive sign.

Brown rats are associated with fertility, abundance, material wealth, and well-being. It's a sign that you should not worry about the future and that your desires and dreams will come to pass. 

It's also associated with the ability to solve problems and overcome challenging obstacles, as well as material wealth.

The more rats you see in your dream, the better. 

However, if you fear the rats in your dream, it may suggest that you are afraid to go after what you truly want in life and that your fears will keep you from success.

Dream of a Big or Giant Rat

When dreaming about a big rat, it could signal the feeling of being overwhelmed. 

Sometimes, it could be a sign of your own potential for damaging behavior, such as being controlling.

When you dream about a giant rat, it can symbolize feeling threatened or outnumbered. 

The rat could also be a representation of your own vulnerability or inner fears about something that's happening in your life.

Alternatively, the rat could signify that someone is deliberately trying to undermine you or sabotage your efforts.

Dream of a Small Rat

A small rat in your dream could represent the insignificant challenges or annoyances that come your way. 

It could also be a metaphor for something you perceive as unimportant or unworthy of notice but is actually cause for alarm.

The rat represents something small but threatening, so it can be a warning from your subconscious to watch out for someone or something that seems insignificant but could actually do harm.

A small rat can also mean that you feel out of sorts or not in touch with your feelings. You may be feeling pressured by others into doing something that you don't want to do.