Tattoos generally symbolize specific meanings. Animal tattoos are great tattoos to get if you want your tattoo to hold very specific meanings. Each animal conveys something different. Animals aren’t gender-specific so that men and women can get them both. You can also put them on any part of your body. Animals have a long history as visual symbols. Actually, since ancient times, making was depicting animals in the art to convey different cultural-rooted meanings. From cave paintings 20,000 years ago to comic strips from this century, many different ideas are surrounding these images.
Usually, one single animal will represent many ideas, depending on the time and culture. Those that opt for animal tattoos commonly select an animal design that has its basis on meanings associated with it.
Here, we are going to talk about one such animal, which is the jackal. Continue reading and discover something more about its characteristics and its use in tattoos.
- What kind of animal is the jackal?
Jackals are omnivorous mammals, with medium size, belonging to the genus Canis. This genus also includes wolves, coyotes, and domestic dogs. The historical use of the word “jackal” is for many small canids. However, in modern use, it commonly refers to three species: side-striped jackal, black-backed jackal, and the golden jackal.
Jackals and coyotes are predators of medium-sized animals and pretty good scavengers. Their long legs and their curved canine teeth are adapted for hunting small mammals, birds, and reptiles. Their large feet and their fused leg bones provide them with a physique well-suited for long-distance running. They are capable of maintaining speeds of 16km/h for longer time periods. Jackals are crepuscular, most active at dusk and dawn.
Moreover, their most common social unit is a monogamous pair, which defends its territory from other pairs. It does that by vigorously chasing intruding rivals and marking landmarks around the territory with their feces and urine. The territory could be large enough to hold young adults, who stay with their parents until they establish their territories.
Jackals may occasionally assemble in some small packs, for instance, to scavenge a carcass. However, they usually hunt either alone or in pairs. Moreover, the English word “jackal” dates back to 1600 and derives from the French chacal, which comes from Persian shoghāl. However, the Persian derives from the Sanskrit sṛgālaḥ, which means the howler. Jackals are very similar to coyotes.
- Jackal tattoos, meaning, and symbolism.
The jackal is a beast of ill omen and death in areas of the world which it occupies. These areas are namely parts of North Africa, Eastern Europe, and Southeast Asia. This is because they feed on corpses and frequents graveyards.
Jackals are famous for one characteristic, and that is intelligence. Jackals are very intelligent animals, which is also probably the main meaning of the jackal tattoo. They learn when they are very young to rely on themselves and survive in the wilderness. In order to survive the tough living conditions, they need to have a smart approach to hunting and protecting themselves from larger animals.
Because of this, some of the meanings related to these tattoo designs could also be intelligence, protection, survival, and knowledge. Jackal tattoos can have extremely powerful symbolism, as the jackal is a trickster, inventor, youth, intelligent, and tactical animal.
- Anubis tattoo, the symbol of protection in Egypt.
Anubis, which is the ancient Egyptian god of the dead, has the head of a jackal, with a distinctive long muzzle and large pointed ears.
Ancient Egyptians are the first culture that had tattoos and multiple symbols with specific tattoo meanings. Anubis, the jackal-headed figure, was the god of the dead and the afterlife. He is the symbol of the optimistic side of death, focusing on peace, respect, and protection coming with it.
Most people that see Anubis tattoo interpret it as a god who looks after those that have passed into the afterlife. One interpretation of this symbol is, the god of the Underworld, literally weighing the heart of someone. The weight of the heart determines if or not each soul is going to make it into the afterlife or not.
There are different ways of depicting this god. You can traditionally draw him, as a man or dog with a head of a jackal, for instance. You can also depict it with a mummy, a weight scale, or an Ankh as well. Anubis tattoos will look good anywhere on the body if its scale is appropriate.
Generally said, jackal tattoos are common among the people who love this animal, or who have it as an animal totem. Usually, the tattoo this animal to symbolize protection, or even to show their intelligence to the world. Jackals also have bad traits, but they are not often a motif for tattoos.
Before getting this tattoo, consider its meaning and symbolism, and see whether it corresponds to your personality or not. We hope you like it!