Chinese Astrology: Determining Your Month, Day and Hour Animal

The Chinese Zodiac system provides you with a system of Heavenly Stems (one version refers to the Five Elements another to a more complicated configuration) and Earthly Branches. In this method commonly used by astrologers in the Ba Zi or the Four Pillars of Destiny, the Earthly Branches are the Circle of Animals. Each of the 12 animals has a year, month, day and even hour. Since the year is readily available on the internet and in various books and articles, I will look only at the Earthly Branches for the Month, Day and Hour.

Month Rulers

There are twelve animals called “Inner Animals” that represent each month of the year. Their favorable month is as follows:

  • Ox: January
  • Tiger: February
  • Rabbit: March
  • Dragon: April
  • Snake: May
  • Horse: June
  • Sheep: July
  • Monkey: August
  • Rooster: September
  • Dog: October
  • Pig: November
  • Rat: December

Carefully consider the month of your animal. In this time, s/he becomes the most active. As such, it is a favourable month for you. During this period, your characteristics will become more obvious to others.

Day Animals

Chinese animal signs rule over days of the week, too. The term for them is “True Animals.” If your astrologer wishes to prepare a chart, it is essential he or she knows the animals of your day of birth. Given there are only seven days of the week and 12 animals, there is some repetition or doubling up.

The animals for each day are as follows:

  • Monday: Sheep
  • Tuesday: Dragon
  • Wednesday: Horse
  • Thursday: Rat,Pig
  • Friday: Rabbit, Snake, Dog
  • Saturday: Ox,Tiger, Rooster
  • Sunday: Monkey

Hour Animals

In preparing a Chinese astrology chart, you also must include the hour of your birth. The term for these animals is “Secret Animal.” The times provided below refer to Western concepts of time. The Chinese system is very different.

  • 11am -1am: Rat
  • 1am – 3 am: Ox
  • 3am – 5 am: Tiger
  • 5am – 7 am: Rabbit
  • 7am – 9am: Dragon
  • 9am – 11am: Snake
  • 11am – 1pm: Horse
  • 1pm – 3pm: Goat
  • 3pm – 5pm: Monkey
  • 5pm – 7pm: Rooster
  • 7pm – 9pm: Dog
  • 9pm – 11pm: Pig

Putting it all Together

As a result, the initial look at your chart would consist of the four animals. They would be your year animal, month animal, day animal and hour animal. Yet, each animal does not have equal weight in your astrological chart. The year animal has more force than that of the month. The month animal has more weight than that of the day. The day animal is more powerful than that of the hour.


In determining your animal, you need to look beyond that of your year. You must also take into consideration the inner or month animal, the true or day animal and the secret or hour animal. By combining these four animals together, you are better able to reach a basic analysis of your character (purely a Western concept). However, if you wish to complete a Four Pillars astrological chart, you will also need to know about the metals associated with each of these four Earthly Branches. In Chinese Astrology, this Five element system forms a component of the Heavenly Stems.

Comments 10 comments

Diane Ward 4 years ago

lots of useful information

Sabrina 3 years ago

First of all, you should be going off of Lunar months for Eastern zodiacs. This isn't correct and therefore inconclusive.

Sally 2 years ago

@ sabrina, says you....

Otter 2 years ago

Just a clarification, Sabrina is right.

This page has gotten everything down correctly except the month and day animals.

The month animals follow the lunar calendar and do not exactly start at the beginning of the month. They tend to start around the 5-8th day of the month. October 8th starts the month of the dog. March 6th starts the month of the rabbit. This is not difficult to figure out with a bit of research.

Day animals and their elements are a little harder to figure out. They are calculated consecutively just like the years and the months. Days of the week do not have a set animal assigned to them. It doesn't make sense for one day to only have one animal, and others multiple. The animal and element signs always follow an order, as well. Why does the dragon come after the goat? The dragon is always fifth, after the rabbit (the 4th animal), who is after, tiger (the 3rd animal), and so on.

An example would be today, Friday February 22, 2014 is a WOOD RAT day. 12 days later (on Thursday March 6, 2014), it's going to be a FIRE RAT day. Another 12 days (Tuesday March 18, 2014) is going to be an EARTH RAT day, and so on.

Since it goes on infinitely, there is no way to find out your day sign without the use of a calculator. There are numerous calculators around the internet if you want to find out your day animal. This one is accurate:

The zodiac that does follow the days of the week is the BURMESE/MYANMAR zodiac. I can understand confusing the two since the animals are kind of similar, but not really. Research is important before posting.

Naja 2 years ago

Hello! Thanks for your article. It's very interesting! I was wondering if you know where to learn more about the impact of the month and day animals on your biorhythms? I can only find yearly horoscopes online. Thank you!

DJS 2 years ago

Why is there a difference between day animals on this site, and on online calculators for chinese astrology? The day animal I get through the calculator, and the day animal here, are not the same! Is there an explanation for this?

DJS 2 years ago

I just realized Otter`s post explains my question...

AstroJoe 14 months ago

Here you say the year has the most force... But I read elsewhere that the hour has the most force because it is the smallest denominator. Please expel fact from fiction

Hade 6 months ago

Just wanted you have any questions or if you want to get the chance to see if I could not get the same thing happened to be a great day

STEVENSON 2 months ago


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