Dog’s symbolism in European art

According to this source a dog in the European art symbolises the following things: Guidance, protection, loyalty, fidelity, faithfulness, watchfulness.

Titian, Portrait of Federico Gonzaga and his dog. Image from here

Cat’s provocation

Andrea Doria and his cat. A member of the most rich influential and powerful family of the Italian Renaissance also wanted to to have a portrait with his cat. The cat in the picture is of the same importance as the powerful man. His look is strong and provocative. Why? A mystery.

Venetian painter, image from here

Animals in clothes II

Singerie (Monkey Trick) became popular in XVIII century. Its decorative features caused that the animals in clothes were designed by the best designers of the rococo style and desired by collectors.

Johann Joachim Kandler (1706-1775), The Monkey Band, Meissen Porcelain Manufactory image from here

Animals in clothes I

Singerie (Monkey Trick) is a genre that has been developed from XVI century mainly in the Flemish painting. In this tradition, the animals behave like people and wear human clothes. These paintings aimed to entertain.

Abraham Teniers (1629-1670), Barbershop with monkeys and cats, image from here

Portrait of a dog in the sky

The most famous dog in Greek mythology is called Laelaps (fem.). She was so fast that never fails to chase her goal. Once, she was sent to catch a fox from Mount Teumessos. But, this fox’s destiny was never to be caught. Eternal chase was stopped by Zeus who transformed the two animals in two constellations on the sky: Canis Major (Laelaps) and Canis Minor (the Teumessian fox).

Canis Major from Urania's Mirror, published in London c.1825


Sphinx - mysterious like all the cats has his ancient portrait in Egipcian Gisa. It is not clear for scientists why it is here. On the other hand, any owner of a cat exactly knows why a cat could like such a sandy place. Here the whole mystery…

Great Sphinx of Giza May 2015" by MusikAnimal - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons