I use consciousness in the sense of awareness. In my tradition, it is “The Observer” watching everything the mind and body do. Not awareness but the sense of awareness.
And I have no problem believing that this same sense exists in everything, beginning with animals. Do you think a dog has no sense of self? Or a cat?
That’s why I see consciousness as working from the outside in, looking at the workings of the individual being. Not something trapped inside, peering out at the world.