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Animal Companions

Some adventurers travel with loyal allies known as animal companions and familiars. The former begin as young animals but acquire impressive physical abilities as you level up, while the latter share a magical bond with you.

Animal Companions

An animal companion is a loyal comrade who follows your orders without you needing to use Handle an Animal on it. Your animal companion has the minion trait, and it gains 2 actions during your turn if you use the Command an Animal action to command it; this is in place of the usual effects of Command an Animal. If your companion dies, you can spend a week of downtime to replace it at no cost. You can have only one animal companion at a time.

Riding Animal Companions

You or an ally can ride your animal companion as long as it is at least one size larger than the rider. If it is carrying a rider, the animal companion can use only its land Speed, and it can’t move and Support you on the same turn. However, if your companion has the mount special ability, it’s especially suited for riding and ignores both of these restrictions.

Young Animal Companions

The following are the base statistics for a young animal companion, the first animal companion most characters get. You make adjustments to these statistics depending on the type of animal you choose. As you gain levels, you might make further adjustments as your companion becomes more powerful. Animal companions calculate their modifiers and DCs just as you do with one difference: the only item bonuses they can benefit from are to speed and AC (their maximum item bonus to AC is +2).

Proficiencies

Your animal companion uses your level to determine its proficiency bonuses. It’s trained in its unarmed attacks, unarmored defense, barding, all saving throws, Perception, Acrobatics, and Athletics. Animal companions can’t use abilities that require greater Intelligence, such as Coerce or Decipher Writing, even if trained in the appropriate skill, unless they have a specialization that allows it.

Ability Modifiers

An animal companion begins with base ability modifiers of Str +2, Dex +2, Con +1, Int –4, Wis +1, Cha +0. Each type has its own strengths and increases two of these modifiers by 1 each. These increases are already calculated into the stat blocks in Companion Types below.

Hit Points

Your animal companion has ancestry Hit Points from its type, plus a number of Hit Points equal to 6 plus its Constitution modifier for each level you have.

Mature Animal Companions

To advance a young animal companion to a mature animal companion (usually a result of one of your class feat choices), increase its Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, and Wisdom modifiers by 1. Increase its unarmed attack damage from one die to two dice (for instance 1d8 to 2d8), and its proficiency rank for Perception and all saving throws to expert. Increase its proficiency ranks in Intimidation, Stealth, and Survival to trained, and if it was already trained in one of those skills from its type, increase its proficiency rank in that skill to expert. If your companion is Medium or smaller, it grows by one size.

Nimble Animal Companions

To advance a mature animal companion to a nimble animal companion, increase its Dexterity modifier by 2 and its Strength, Constitution, and Wisdom modifiers by 1. It deals 2 additional damage with its unarmed attacks. Increase its proficiency ranks in Acrobatics and unarmored defense to expert. It also learns the advanced maneuver for its type. Its attacks become magical for the purpose of ignoring resistances.

Savage Animal Companions

To advance a mature animal companion to a savage animal companion, increase its Strength modifier by 2 and its Dexterity, Constitution, and Wisdom modifiers by 1. It deals 3 additional damage with its unarmed attacks. Increase its proficiency rank in Athletics to expert. It also learns the advanced maneuver for its type. If your companion is Medium or smaller, it grows by one size. Its attacks become magical for the purpose of ignoring resistances.

Companion Types

The species of animal you choose is called your companion’s type. Each companion type has its own statistics. The Size entry indicates your companion’s starting size as a young animal companion. Following the size entry are the companion’s unarmed attacks, and then its ability modifiers. The Hit Points entry indicates the companion’s ancestry Hit Points. The Skill entry indicates an additional trained skill your companion has. The Senses entry lists your companion’s special senses. The Speed entry gives your companion’s Speeds. The Special entry, if present, lists any other special abilities your companion has, for example whether it often serves as a mount and is particularly appropriate for mounted classes, such as the champion.

The Support Benefit entry indicates a special benefit you gain by Commanding the Animal to use the Support action (see below). The Advanced Maneuver entry indicates a powerful new action your companion learns how to use if it becomes a nimble or savage animal companion.

Support [one-action]

Requirements The creature is an animal companion.

Your animal companion supports you. You gain the benefits listed in the companion type’s Support Benefit entry. If the animal uses the Support action, the only other actions it can use on this turn are basic move actions to get into position to take advantage of the Support benefits; if it has already used any other action this turn, it can’t Support you.

Badger

Your companion is a badger, wolverine, or other big mustelid.

Size Small

Melee [one-action] jaws, Damage 1d8 piercing

Melee [one-action] claw (agile), Damage 1d6 slashing

Str +2, Dex +2, Con +2, Int –4, Wis +2, Cha +0

Hit Points 8

Skill Survival

Senses low-light vision, scent (imprecise, 30 feet)

Speed 25 feet, burrow 10 feet, climb 10 feet

Support Benefit Your badger digs around your foe’s position, interfering with its footing. Until the start of your next turn, if you hit and deal damage to a creature your badger threatens, the target can’t use a Step action (unless it can Step through difficult terrain) until it moves from its current position.

Advanced Maneuver Badger Rage

Badger Rage [one-action]

Concentrate Emotion Mental

Requirements The badger isn’t fatigued or raging.

The badger enters a state of pure rage that lasts for 1 minute, until there are no enemies it can perceive, or until it falls unconscious, whichever comes first. It can’t voluntarily stop raging. While raging, the badger is affected in the following ways.

  • It deals 4 additional damage with its bite attacks and 2 additional damage with its claw attacks.
  • It takes a –1 penalty to AC.
  • It can’t use actions that have the concentrate trait unless they also have the rage trait. The animal companion can Seek even while raging.

After it has stopped raging, it can’t use Badger Rage again for 1 minute.

Bear

Your companion is a black, grizzly, polar, or other type of bear.

Size Small

Melee [one-action] jaws, Damage 1d8 piercing

Melee [one-action] claw (agile), Damage 1d6 slashing

Str +3, Dex +2, Con +2, Int –4, Wis +1, Cha +0

Hit Points 8

Skill Intimidation

Senses low-light vision, scent (imprecise, 30 feet)

Speed 35 feet

Support Benefit Your bear mauls your enemies when you create an opening. Until the start of your next turn, each time you hit a creature in the bear’s reach with a Strike, the creature takes 1d8 slashing damage from the bear. If your bear is nimble or savage, the slashing damage increases to 2d8.

Advanced Maneuver Bear Hug

Bear Hug [one-action]

Requirements The bear’s last action was a successful claw Strike.

The bear makes another claw Strike against the same target.

If this Strike hits, the target is also grabbed, as if the bear had successfully Grappled the target.

Bird

Your companion is a bird of prey, such as an eagle, hawk, or owl.

Size Small

Melee [one-action] jaws (finesse), Damage 1d6 piercing

Melee [one-action] talon (agile, finesse), Damage 1d4 slashing

Str +2, Dex +3, Con +1, Int –4, Wis +2, Cha +0

Hit Points 4

Skill Stealth

Senses low-light vision

Speed 10 feet, fly 60 feet

Support Benefit The bird pecks at your foes’ eyes when you create an opening. Until the start of your next turn, your Strikes that damage a creature that your bird threatens also deal 1d4 persistent bleed damage, and the target is dazzled until it removes the bleed damage. If your bird is nimble or savage, the persistent bleed damage increases to 2d4.

Advanced Maneuver Flyby Attack

Flyby Attack [two-actions]

The bird Flies and makes a talon Strike at any point along the way.

Cat

Your companion is a big cat, such as a leopard or tiger.

Size Small

Melee [one-action] jaws (finesse), Damage 1d6 piercing

Melee [one-action] claw (agile, finesse), Damage 1d4 slashing

Str +2, Dex +3, Con +1, Int –4, Wis +2, Cha +0

Hit Points 4

Skill Stealth

Senses low-light vision, scent (imprecise, 30 feet)

Speed 35 feet

Special Your cat deals 1d4 extra precision damage against flatfooted targets.

Support Benefit Your cat throws your enemies off-balance when you create an opening. Until the start of your next turn, your Strikes that deal damage to a creature that your cat threatens make the target flat-footed until the end of your next turn.

Advanced Maneuver Cat Pounce

Cat Pounce [one-action]

Flourish

The cat Strides and then Strikes. If it was undetected at the start of its Cat Pounce, it remains undetected until after the attack.

Dromaeosaur

Your companion is a dromaeosaur (also called a raptor), such as a velociraptor or deinonychus.

Size Small

Melee [one-action] jaws (finesse); Damage 1d8 piercing

Melee [one-action] talon (agile, finesse); Damage 1d6 slashing

Str +2, Dex +3, Con +2, Int –4, Wis +1, Cha +0

Hit Points 6

Skill Stealth

Senses low-light vision, scent (imprecise, 30 feet)

Speed 50 feet

Support Benefit Your raptor constantly darts into flanking position. Until the start of your next turn, it counts as being in its space or an empty space of your choice within 10 feet when determining whether you and your companion are flanking; you can choose a different space for each of your attacks).

Advanced Maneuver Darting Attack

Darting Attack [one-action]

Flourish

The raptor Steps up to 10 feet and then Strikes, or Strikes and then Steps up to 10 feet.

Horse

Your companion is a horse, pony, or similar equine.

Size Medium or Large

Melee [one-action] hoof (agile), Damage 1d6 bludgeoning

Str +3, Dex +2, Con +2, Int –4, Wis +1, Cha +0

Hit Points 8

Skill Survival

Senses low-light vision, scent (imprecise, 30 feet)

Speed 40 feet

Special mount

Support Benefit Your horse adds momentum to your charge. Until the start of your next turn, if you moved at least 10 feet on the action before your attack, add a circumstance bonus to damage to that attack equal to twice the number of damage dice. If your weapon already has the jousting weapon trait, increase the trait’s damage bonus by 2 per die instead.

Advanced Maneuver Gallop

Gallop [two-actions]

Move

The horse Strides twice at a +10-foot circumstance bonus to Speed.

Snake

Your companion is a constrictor snake, such as a boa or python.

Size Small

Melee [one-action] jaws (finesse); Damage 1d8 piercing

Str +3, Dex +3, Con +1, Int –4, Wis +1, Cha +0

Hit Points 6

Skill Stealth

Senses low-light vision, scent (imprecise, 30 feet)

Speed 20 feet, climb 20 feet, swim 20 feet

Support Benefit Your snake holds your enemies with its coils, interfering with reactions. Until the start of your next turn, any creature your snake threatens can’t use reactions triggered by your actions unless its level is higher than yours.

Advanced Maneuver Constrict

Constrict [one-action]

Requirements The snake has a smaller creature grabbed.

The snake deals 12 bludgeoning damage to the grabbed creature; the creature must attempt a basic Fortitude save. If the snake is a specialized animal companion, increase this damage to 20.

Wolf

Your companion is a wolf or other canine creature, such as a dog.

Size Small

[one-action] Melee jaws (finesse); Damage 1d8 piercing

Str +2, Dex +3, Con +2, Int –4, Wis +1, Cha +0

Hit Points 6

Skill Survival

Senses low-light vision, scent (imprecise, 30 feet)

Speed 40 feet

Support Benefit Your wolf tears tendons with each opening. Until the start of your next turn, your Strikes that damage creatures your wolf threatens give the target a –5-foot status penalty to its Speeds for 1 minute (–10 on a critical success).

Advanced Maneuver Knockdown

Knockdown [one-action]

Requirements The animal companion’s last action was a successful jaws Strike.

The wolf automatically knocks the target of its jaws Strike prone.

Specialized Animal Companions

Specialized animal companions are more intelligent and engage in more complex behaviors. The first time an animal gains a specialization, it gains the following: Its proficiency rank for unarmed attacks increases to expert. Its proficiency ranks for saving throws and Perception increase to master.

Increase its Dexterity modifier by 1 and its Intelligence modifier by 2. Its unarmed attack damage increases from two dice to three dice, and it increases its additional damage with unarmed attacks from 2 to 4 or from 3 to 6.

Each specialization grants additional benefits. Most animal companions can have only one specialization.

Ambusher

In your companion’s natural environment, it can use a Sneak action even if it’s currently observed. It gains a +2 circumstance bonus to initiative rolls using Stealth, its proficiency rank in Stealth increases to expert (or master if it was already an expert from its type), and its Dexterity modifier increases by 1. Its proficiency rank for unarmored defense increases to expert, or master if it’s nimble.

Bully

Your companion terrorizes foes with dominance displays and pushes them around the battlefield. Its proficiency ranks for Athletics and Intimidation increase to expert (or master if it was already expert from its type), its Strength modifier increases by 1, and its Charisma modifier increases by 3.

Daredevil

Your companion joins the fray with graceful leaps and dives.

It gains the deny advantage ability, so it isn’t flat-footed to hidden, undetected, or flanking creatures unless such a creature’s level is greater than yours. Its proficiency rank in Acrobatics increases to master, and its Dexterity modifier increases by 1. Its proficiency rank in unarmored defense increases to expert, or master if it’s nimble.

Racer

Your companion races. It gains a +10-foot status bonus to its Speed, swim Speed, or fly Speed (your choice). Its proficiency in Fortitude saves increases to legendary, and its Constitution modifier increases by 1.

Tracker

Your companion is an incredible tracker. It can move at full Speed while following tracks. Its proficiency rank in Survival increases to expert (or master if it was already an expert from its type), and its Wisdom modifier increases by 1.

Wrecker

Your companion smashes things. Its unarmed attacks ignore half an object’s Hardness. Its Athletics proficiency increases to master, and its Strength modifier increases by 1.

Familiars

Familiars are mystically bonded creatures tied to your magic. Most familiars were originally animals, though the ritual of becoming a familiar makes them something more. You can choose a Tiny animal you want as your familiar, such as a bat, cat, raven, or snake. Some familiars are different, usually described in the ability that granted you a familiar; for example, a druid’s leshy familiar is a Tiny plant instead of an animal, formed from a minor nature spirit.

Familiars have the minion trait, so during an encounter, they gain 2 actions in a round if you spend an action to command them. If your familiar dies, you can spend a week of downtime to replace it at no cost.

You can have only one familiar at a time.

Modifiers and AC

Your familiar’s save modifiers and AC are equal to yours before applying circumstance or status bonuses or penalties. Its Perception, Acrobatics, and Stealth modifiers are equal to your level plus your spellcasting ability modifier (Charisma if you don’t have one, unless otherwise specified). If it attempts an attack roll or other skill check, it uses your level as its modifier. It doesn’t have or use its own ability modifiers and can never benefit from item bonuses.

Hit Points

Your familiar has 5 Hit Points for each of your levels.

Size Your familiar is Tiny.

Senses

Your familiar has low-light vision and can gain additional senses from familiar abilities. It can communicate empathically with you as long as it’s within 1 mile of you, sharing emotions. It doesn’t understand or speak languages normally, but it can gain speech from a familiar ability.

Movement

Your familiar has either a Speed of 25 feet or a swim Speed of 25 feet (choose one upon gaining the familiar).

It can gain other movement types from familiar abilities.

Familiar and Master Abilities

Each day, you channel your magic into two abilities, which can be either familiar or master abilities. If your familiar is an animal that naturally has one of these abilities (for instance, an owl has a fly Speed), you must select that ability. Your familiar can’t be an animal that naturally has more familiar abilities than your daily maximum familiar abilities.

Familiar Abilities

Amphibious: It gains a swim Speed of 25 feet (or Speed of 25 feet if it already has a swim Speed).

Burrower: It gains a burrow Speed of 5 feet, allowing it to dig Tiny holes.

Climber: It gains a climb Speed of 25 feet.

Damage Avoidance: Choose one type of save. It takes no damage when it succeeds at that type of save; this doesn’t prevent effects other than damage.

Darkvision: It gains darkvision.

Fast Movement: Increase one of the familiar’s Speeds from 25 feet to 40 feet.

Flier: It gains a fly Speed of 25 feet.

Kinspeech: It can understand and speak with animals of the same species. To select this, your familiar must be an animal, it must have the speech ability, and you must be at least 6th level.

Lab Assistant: It can use your Quick Alchemy action. You must have Quick Alchemy, and your familiar must be in your space. This has the same cost and requirement as if you used it. It must have the manual dexterity ability to select this.

Manual Dexterity: It can use up to two of its limbs as if they were hands to use manipulate actions.

Scent: It gains scent (imprecise, 30 feet).

Speech: It understands and speaks a language you know.

Master Abilities

Cantrip Connection: You can prepare an additional cantrip, or if you have a repertoire, instead designate a cantrip to add to your repertoire every time you select this ability; you can retrain it but can’t otherwise change it. You must be able to prepare cantrips or add them to your repertoire to select this.

Extra Reagents: Your familiar grows extra infused reagents on or in its body. You gain an additional batch of infused reagents. You must have the infused reagents ability to select this ability.

Familiar Focus: Once per day, your familiar can use 2 actions with the concentrate trait to regain 1 Focus Point, up to your usual maximum You must have a focus pool to select this.

Lifelink: If your familiar would be reduced to 0 HP by damage, as a reaction with the concentrate trait, you can take the damage. If you do, you take all the damage and your familiar takes none. However, if special effects when a hit damages your familiar (such as snake venom) still apply to your familiar.

Spell Battery: You gain one additional spell slot at least 3 levels lower than your highest-level spell slot; you must be able to cast 4th-level spells using spell slots to select this master ability.

Spell Delivery: If your familiar is in your space, you can cast a spell with a range of touch, transfer its power to your familiar, and command the familiar to deliver the spell. If you do, the familiar uses its 2 actions for the round to move to a target of your choice and touch that target. If it doesn’t reach the target to touch it this turn, the spell has no effect. Applying an archetype requires you to select archetype feats instead of class feats. Start by finding the archetype that best fits your character concept, and select the archetype’s dedication feat using one of your class feat choices. Once you have the dedication feat, you can select any feat from that archetype in place of a class feat as long as you meet its prerequisites. The archetype feat you select is still subject to any selection restrictions on the class feat it replaces. For example, if you gained an ability at 6th level that granted you a 4th-level class feat with the dwarf trait, you could swap out that class feat only for an archetype feat of 4th level or lower with the dwarf trait. Archetype feats you gain in place of a class feat are called archetype class feats.

Section 15: Copyright Notice
Pathfinder Core Rulebook (Second Edition) © 2019, Paizo Inc.; Designers: Logan Bonner, Jason Bulmahn, Stephen Radney-MacFarland, and Mark Seifter.