animal in your logo

Should You Use an Animal in Your Logo?

Does your company’s logo need a refresh? You’re probably spending hours pondering what images or symbols your logo might contain. Like many companies, you might choose to use an animal in your logo, and for good reason. It’s easier for people to form an emotional bond with animals than fonts and initials. Animals are powerful symbols used by some of the most successful enterprises. Animal logos are likable, memorable, and can quickly build brand recognition.

Animal-themed logos span all industries and sectors. Sometimes an animal logo is the obvious choice. World Wildlife Fund has its iconic panda. But you don’t have to work directly with animals to use their images. All sorts of animals carry symbolism; dogs convey loyalty, tigers ferocity, and ants strength. The right creature can embody the elements of your brand.

But how do you know if using an animal in your logo is right for your organization? The answer may not be black and white, so let’s take a look at the possibilities.


Psychology Behind Animals in Logos

In general, people love animals. Snakes and spiders strike fear in some, but other animals, like cats and dogs, give an almost universally positive feeling. That’s because many people tend to place a high value on pets. Different animals evoke different emotions. And when you have only a few seconds to make an impression on a client or consumer, choose an emotion that keeps them thinking about your product. Although most animal logos incorporate wild ones, not dogs or cats, people identify through their experiences with zoos, literature, and film.

People quickly pick up on visual symbolism. So when they see an elephant, one of their first thoughts might be that the elephant symbolizes memory. Or when they look at an image of a gorilla, they may think of strength, which is why Gorilla Glue chose to use a gorilla in their name and logo; their glue promises to hold firm. If the animal you use in your logo is brand appropriate, it’s shown that consumers are better able to respond to, and recognize the logo.


Five Common Animal Logos

Read our previous post on blue foxes to learn about one special animal many brands choose. Below are some other popular choices.


When people think of lions, courage and bravery usually come to mind, which makes a lion the perfect logo for a new company. Leadership is another trait that a lion is often used to represent. It may signal that you’re the “king” of your industry.



Butterflies can symbolize many different things, but primarily transformation. If your organization emerged from a significant change or helps your customers transform themselves or their business, consider the butterfly.



Imagine birds, and one of the first images that come to mind is flying high in the sky. So if you want a logo that will signify your company is soaring to new heights, consider a spread-wing bird. The many types of birds can suggest all different brand traits.

If you want to get more specific with birds, consider the classic eagle. In addition to being the national bird of the United States, eagles evoke a sense of power and pride, giving it a strong emotional pull in advertising. Owls, in turn, can represent knowledge or nighttime. A hummingbird might evoke speed and precision.



One of the most feared predators in the ocean, but also one of the most misunderstood. Sharks actually attack very few people, while people hunt and kill them frequently. They can also symbolize survival or tenacity. If your organization has undergone challenges and came out stronger than before, the shark may be an excellent choice for your logo.


Using animals in logos can be an extremely effective branding technique if you think it fully through. As long as the logo is appropriate and matches with your organization’s mission, go for the animal and take advantage of its inherent marketability.


IMAGE: Pixabay / CC0 Public Domain

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