Hunter Pets: Taming, Loyalty, Happiness and Feeding

For those who may not have played during the original launch of Classic, or maybe you’ve forgotten in the intervening years, here’s a quick run-down of how to properly care for and feed your pet to keep them happy and helpful.

There are a few very important differences between how pets currently work on the latest release and how pets work in Classic:

  • You do not get your first pet immediately
  • Your pet requires feeding
  • You must establish trust with your pet through the Loyalty system to keep it

When Do I Get My Pet?!

If you’re used to having a pet as soon as you roll your Hunter, it may be a bit jarring not to have one loping alongside you when you make your first Hunter on Classic servers. Don’t worry, this is intended!

At level 10, you’ll start a quest chain (which differs depending on your character’s race) that will result in the ability to tame beasts as your pet.

For Orcs, Trolls and Tauren, the process begins with The Hunter’s Path quest that begins with Kary Thunderhorn located in the Hunter Rise in Thunder Bluff, Sian’dur located in the Valley of Honor in Orgrimmar, or Thotar located in Razor Hill in Durotar.

For Night Elves, the process begins with The Hunter’s Path quest that begins with Jocaste located in the Cenarion Enclave in Darnassus or Dazalar located in the village of Dolanar in Teldrassil.

For Dwarves, the process begins with The Hunter’s Path quest that begins with Olmin Burningbeard located in the Military Ward in Ironforge or Grif Wildheart located in Kharanos in Dun Morogh.

Each of these variations is generally available alongside other quests directing you to major cities that are intended to introduce you to social/trade hubs, so they should be somewhat convenient (despite the foot travel necessary) to complete.

Each version of The Hunter’s Path leads to some variation of Taming the Beast, which puts you on your way to earning your first pet!

There are three parts to the Taming the Beast series; you’ll be asked by your Hunter Trainer to take the provided Taming Rod and find a local beast to tame and bring back to prove your aptitude. The rod will only work on the beast specified by your trainer (which differs by your race):

  • Night Elves: Webwood Lurker, Nightsaber Stalker, Strigid Screecher
  • Dwarves: Large Crag Boar, Snow Leopard, Ice Claw Bear
  • Orcs/Trolls: Dire Mottled Boar, Surf Crawler, Armored Scorpid
  • Tauren: Adult Plainstrider, Prairie Stalker, Swoop

All these beasts should be local to the area you’ve already been questing in (you’ve probably seen them already), and should be fairly easy to tame and bring back to your trainer. Once you’ve completed the three parts of Taming the Beast, you’ll be given a final quest, Training the Beast, which directs you back to your capital city to talk to the trainer there, where you’ll receive a Training Lesson, which teaches you Beast Training, Feed Pet and Revive Pet. (You’ll learn additional pet management skills later on.)

What the Heck is Pet Loyalty?

Loyalty is a descriptor of how much trust and rapport you’ve established with your pet. If your pet’s loyalty drops too low, it will abandon you and disappear! Your pet’s current Loyalty level is displayed on your pet’s information panel:

As shown above, the pet’s Loyalty level is displayed right under their name, level and type. There are a total of six pet Loyalty levels:

  1. Rebellious
  2. Unruly
  3. Submissive
  4. Dependable
  5. Faithful
  6. Best Friend

Your pet’s Loyalty level will determine how much care and feeding it needs. Your pet will gain Loyalty equal to 5% of your XP at current level. Ideally, you want your pet to be your Best Friend.

So What’s this Happiness Thing All About?

Your pet’s Happiness, which can also be seen in the panel above, is indicated by a little face icon:

(Depending on the UI you use, your pet’s Happiness may also be indicated by the color of their unit frame: red, yellow or green.)

Your pet’s Happiness level will affect how much damage it does, so it’s important to keep your pet as happy as possible at all times!

  • Unhappy: Your pet will only do 75% damage
  • Content: Your pet will do 100% damage
  • Happy: Your pet will do 125% damage

To increase your pet’s Happiness, you need to Feed it! We’ll go into more detail on feeding your pet in a bit, but for now, it’s important to know that your pet will only eat certain types of food (based on it’s type), and some foods will provide more Happiness than others.

Your pet will naturally lose Happiness over time from just standing around, being Dismissed, dying, or when you go out of range of your pet (thereby causing it to disappear), so make sure that you’re paying attention to its Happiness level and that you keep plenty of food handy!

Feeding Your Pet

Which brings us, finally, to feeding your pet. First, let’s talk about how feeding affects Happiness.

One feeding provides your pet with 10 bites of food distributed over 20 seconds. Each bite will provide +8, +17 or +35 Happiness depending on the quality of the food. If your pet attacks a target during feeding, the feeding is interrupted, so it’s important to make sure that you’re feeding your pet in safe spots out of combat.

Now, what should we be feeding pets? Well, that depends on what type of pet you have! There are 17 different types of pets available (with their diets):

  • Bat – Fungus, Fruit
  • Bear – Meat, Fish, Cheese, Bread, Fungus, Fruit
  • Boar – Meat, Fish, Cheese, Bread, Fungus, Fruit
  • Carrion Bird – Meat, Fish
  • Cat – Meat, Fish
  • Crab – Fish, Bread, Fungus, Fruit
  • Crocolisk – Meat, Fish
  • Gorilla – Fungus, Fruit
  • Hyena – Meat, Fruit
  • Owl – Meat
  • Raptor – Meat
  • Scorpid – Meat
  • Spider – Meat
  • Tallstrider – Cheese, Fungus, Fruit
  • Turtle – Fish, Fungus, Fruit, Raw Fish
  • Wind Serpent – Fish, Cheese, Bread
  • Wolf – Meat

Now, don’t worry about memorizing this list. You can always determine a beast’s diet by targeting the beast and using your Beast Lore ability. The resulting tooltip when you mouse-over the beast will tell you what the beast eats! It’s generally a good idea to keep a couple stacks of current-level Meat and Fish in your bags, as these will feed most of the beasts you could have as pets.

That about covers the basic differences between how pets work on the most current release and Classic!

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