PET-RELATED QUESTIONS What's the best pet?
There really isn't a best pet. They all bring unique buffs or debuffs to hunters and their party or raid. You should use a pet that has a buff/debuff your party or raid is missing or else just use the one you like the best. What's your favorite pet?
What is your pet?
Please don't start another thread on this subject. Honestly, the "favorite pet" threads are getting old and everyone pretty much just the same thing every time. Expect a lot of "cat" answers, a couple "bears", and a few people who try to be original, plus the occasional "I don't like flying pets because they flap in my face," and "I don't like cats because everyone uses a cat." How are pets different?
There are three ways pets can differ.
The first is diet. Most beasts eat meat, or meat and fish. Some eat other things. To check a pet's diet, use the Beast Lore ability on it, or if it's already your pet, mouse over the little happiness icon in your pet window. With talents and glyphs in Wrath, happiness is not as important as it used to be.
The second is their type. There are three types, ferocity, tenacity, and cunning. The general intent seems to be that ferocity is the dps pet, tenacity is the tanking/soloing pets, and cunning pets have nifty tricks. In actual gameplay cunning is very underwhelming. Each type of pet will have a talent tree that you can access here. The talent trees are fairly self explanatory, so I'll leave that as an exercise for the readers.
The third way that pets are different is in a special ability that all pets have. Each pet type (cat/bear/wasp...) will have one special ability. These are what really sets pets apart and makes certain pets better then others. Pet choice actually depends a lot on what is in your raid.
See the Cataclysm Guide
for the new pet abilities.
How do I get my pet?
As of now you get a pet right off the bat at level 1. You will get a pet usually seen around your typical starter zone. You won't be able to control it very well but at level 10 you will get a quest line that allows you to control and be able to tame your own pets. Ok, if I have to tame my pets, how do I actually do it?
To tame a pet you first have to find one you like. Go out into the wild, and find a creature that is a "beast", no bigger than a bear, and not above your level, and click "Tame Beast". Your character will stand still while a bar goes by and the beast will run up and start beating you. This represents the creature's resistance to your efforts to tame it.
If you manage to withstand the attacks for 20 seconds without being interrupted, you will tame your target and it will stop attacking you.
You can NOT take any other action while taming or it will fail. Nobody else can interfere by tanking the beast. You must simply weather the attacks, but there's nothing keeping you from trying to not get hit. Stand as far back as you can and maybe even start with Concussive Shot first. Freezing Traps are wonderful once you have that skill. Can I only tame beasts?
Why can't I tame a dragon?
Beasts are the only creatures hunters can tame, and only certain types at that. (See the Allakhazam beast family link under bestiary, or use Beast Lore if you aren't sure.) Dragons are considered to be too intelligent to be tamed as a minion. There are some cool exotic pets you can only tame if you are BM. OK, I've decided what kind of pet I want. Where do I find a XXX my level?
Go to the side panel for Allakhazam, and under Bestiary, click "By Beast Family..." and pick the family type.
Alternatively, check Petopia for one with a skin you like, because pets can never be more than 5 levels below your own once you've tamed them. What is happiness?
How do I feed my pet?
Happiness is your pet's current disposition. If your pet is happier, he will fight better.
To raise a pet's happiness, you must feed him. After giving the pet a piece of acceptable food, by clicking on the "feed pet" skill and then clicking on the food in your inventory, they will start gaining happiness at a rate of typically 35 per second. This effect lasts for about 10 seconds, and then you will need to feed your pet again. *Do not feed your pet before that, and do not send your pet to attack while he is "digesting" or you will cut short the effect.* (You can also feed your pet by "picking up" the food onto your cursor and clicking on your pet.) You can also increase your pets happiness through some of the talents in the pet trees and via a minor glyph of mend pet.
The icon for their happiness will eventually turn from red to yellow, and then to green, with enough feeding. As your pet gains levels, old food will stop being as effective. If you start seeing your pet gain 17 happiness instead of 35, you need to get higher-level food. Unfortunately, this means at high levels you will be nearly forced into using Talbuk Venison. At lower levels, vendor costs for food aren't bad, random raw meat works for feeding, and cooking is still meaningful. In Wrath with the glyph or a ferocity pet there is really no need to worry about this anymore. It's much nicer. Do pets gain experience and level?
What determines a pet's size?
Yes. They gain experience for every mob you kill, but not for quests you hand in. Pets need 5% of the experience you need per level.
The pet tab in your character window will show you your pet's experience bar. A pet will not gain experience when it is your level, to keep the pet from outleveling you.
Each level makes your pet an effective level higher, raising stats and increasing their chance to hit and be missed. It also gives the pet a few extra training points and makes them a tiny bit bigger. All pets of a given type and level are the same size. If you tame some huge behemoth, it will shrink as it becomes loyal to you. (Funny and depressing at the same time.)
Pets will always be at most 5 levels behind you. That means if you tame a level 5 pet at 80 he will magically turn 75 right away.
And if you tame a level 15 pet at level 15, run around with it until you are both level 30 and then place it in the stable it will again magically turn to level 75 if you take it out again after you have leveled to 80. Which skills can pets use?
There are passive and activated abilities.
Passive abilities are just that: passive. They provide a boost to some attribute, like armor, stamina, or fire resist.
Activated abilities are on use abilities that your pet will use. They can be turned to autocast, so that in a certain situation your pet will automatically cast them (usually every time they can) but autocast can be turned off so you can trigger abilities manually. Oh noes! My pet disappeared/died! Is he gone?
Your pet can disappear for a number of reasons. These include dying, going out of range, being dismissed or abandoned, being stabled, or taking a flight somewhere. In other words, if you don't see your pet, don't panic.
If your pet is not visible, use the Call Pet ability. He will always be somewhere even if he isn't out. If he is dead you will get an error message to that effect. Then Click res pet!
If your pet dies, he is not gone forever. You have an ability to Revive Pet, that costs a ton of mana. Your pet will come back with low health and much lower happiness. (I tend not to be happy about dying either.) Make sure the first thing you do after rezzing your pet is you feed it.
Pets also disappear while you are mounted. How do I control my pet?
The pet bar that appears when you call your pet has three sets of commands. The three on the left, Attack, Follow, and Stay, are direct orders. Attack sics your pet on your target, follow tells him to come with you, (or back to you rather than attacking,) and stay is for making sure he doesn't move. I recommend you bind the command for pet attack to an easy-to-reach key like the tilde since you'll be hitting it a lot and pressing ctrl-1 sucks.
The three on the right are for putting the pet into different attack modes. On aggressive, your pet will chase after anything non-friendly nearby and initiate combat with it. In defensive, the pet will protect itself or you from attackers, but otherwise do nothing. A passive pet will simply moan as it gets hit and let itself be beaten. You should almost never set your pet to aggressive, and strictly use passive in instances so your pet doesn't run off.
The middle slots start off empty, and are for placing trained abilities. All trained abilities can be set to "autocast" by right-clicking them, which will mean the pet will use them whenever possible. If your pet isn't holding aggro, make sure he's growling. If you don't want your pet to tank, (because you're grouped with a warrior,) turn growl off and bite and claw on. You can also left-click the pet abilities to manually command your pet to use them. My pet isn't holding aggro...
There are two potential problems.
1) Your pet needs to be growling (and not cowering.) If growl is turned off your pet will not be generating much threat. Remember that if cower is not on your bar it might be turning on all by itself. Yeah, I know. Super annoying, the same goes for Cower and turning on/off.
2) You're simply generating too much hate. Stop spamming your own abilities. There's no reason to be using multishot or stings in solo 90% of the time. Once you hit level 30 use feign death if you do happen to take aggro.
Side note: Survival hunters have a MUCH harder time keeping aggro on the pet. There's not much that can be done about this, and it has to do with growl mechanics.
They'll have to use their CC to keep mobs from reaching them. Can I have more than one pet?
Yes and no. You can have one at a time, but you don't have to get rid of your current pet forever to get a new one. With the new call pet you can have 5 active pets at one time without needing to visit the stable master.
In each town, usually in front of the inn, is a "stable master" who has 20 slots to store your pets like putting items in a bank. This way, you can board your pet while you go looking for a new pet, or just to have different pets for different situations (like having a DPS pet and a tanking pet.) What else can I do with my pet?
To put your pet away, Dismiss it. To get rid of it forever, right-click it's portrait and select Abandon. Note the difference in these two! A dismissed pet is simply hidden, an abandoned pet is gone for good.
Also by right-clicking your pet, you can choose to rename it. You can only ever rename it once, so be sure to name it what you want.
There is an ability called Eyes of the Beast that lets you take control of your pet for a minute. During this time you can run your pets wherever. When the duration expires, your pet will try to run back to you, and will despawn if he is now out of range. Eyes of the Beast can be a useful tool for very long-distance pulling, since the aggro transfers to the hunter after the pet is gone.
It can also be used for scouting unfamiliar areas without risking yourself, or your party if you're in one, especially if you have a cat with prowl. How do I use my pet in an instance?
Pets can easily cause wipes. Pets do not always take the same exact route you do, and might run past things you don't if you were to jump off an edge and the pet takes the long route. They also will attack things and chase runners places you don't want them to go. Keep a tight leash on your pet in an instance. They don't aggro things as easily as you do, but they still can.
Your pet will mainly be used for support damage, but you can also use it as an off-tank to protect the casters in the back from angry adds that run up to them. Be sure not to attack something that is otherwise under control, however at least now pets will break off an attack from something that becomes controlled. Why can't I tame a mount?
Because Blizzard says so. Taming a beast for combat training and taming it to be used as a riding animal are two different things. Hunters learn how to hunt, so that's what they teach their pets to do.
What's so different about exotic pets?
Well, first off you can only tame them if you have Beast Mastery talented. That makes them (semi)rare and the spirit beasts are very rare because they are rare spawn to boot. All in all Exotic pets aren't much different from normal pets. They aren't better dps, tanking or best for PvP. They're simply less seen, loud and extra large.
And a note: If you tame an exotic pet and then spec away from Beast Mastery you will not lose your pet.
It will simply be locked in your stable until the day you spec for beast mastery again.
If it is in your stable and you want to abandon the pet, you'll have to either respec or send a ticket to a GM to remove it from your stable. Edited, Oct 12th 2010 3:13pm by Hyolith