Featured / Pet Battle

Getting Started in Pet Battles

Let’s get ready to rumble!

I never thought I’d be this into pet battling as I’d never played Pokemon (or had any desire to). However, that all changed when I decided to try it on the beta.

How to Start

Unlock the Battle Pet training ability for all characters on your Battle.net account.

[one_half]Matty - Battle Trainer in Org[/one_half]

[one_half_last]For Horde, look for Matty in the Goblin Slums of Orgrimmar. [/one_half_last]

[one_half]Audrey Burnhep[/one_half]

[one_half_last]For Alliance, head to Audrey Burnhep in Stormwind who is standing under a tree – between the Dwarven District bank and the elemental portals.[/one_half_last]

Things to note

  • Pets gain unique abilities and attacks once they reach level 2, 4, 10, 15 and 20.
  • Battle Pets have a maximum level of 25
  • Players can hold up to 1000 pets and up to 3 versions of the same pet e.g. 3x Ruby Saplings – unless otherwise noted.
  • The source info (under the Pet Journal) can show you where to obtain a pet, including a small blurb about it.

Any of the Stable Masters can heal/revive your pets whenever you need, for a small cost. Good to know when your own ‘Revive Battle Pets‘ spell is on an 8min CD.

Note: you will not be able to use your heal ability for the first 3mins. This was to prevent players from logging into another toon just to use the heal spell. Blizzard considers this an exploit so was changed accordingly.

Starter Pets

Your Battle Pet trainers can sell you a racial pet (if not already known), so be sure to check before you leave. These are great starting pets if you’re not a collector.

Draenei – Blue Moth
Dwarf – Snowshoe Rabbit
Gnome – Snowshoe Rabbit
Human – Orange Tabby Cat
Night Elf – Great Horned Owl
Worgen – Gilnean Raven

Blood Elf – Golden Dragonhawk Hatchling
Goblin – Shore Crawler
Orc – Black Kingsnake
Tauren – Brown Prairie Dog
Troll – Black Kingsnake
Undead – Undercity Cockroach

Pandaren – Jade Crane Chick

Before you attempt your first battle, make sure you have an active pet inserted into the first battle slot of your Pet Journal. Eligible critters can be tracked via the mini map and will show up as a green paw icon. Just right-click on the critter you wish to battle. You’ll eventually be able to allocate up to three active pets for your team.


  • When you tag a critter, you will be phased out with other wildlife until the match is over.
  • A good way to level all your active pets is to have them all participate during a battle (without dying).
  • You can power-level any pet by using 2x max level pets with any lower level pet in your collection. Any XP gained from the battle will go to the levelling pet. This was not always the case, XP used to be split btwn all pets left standing at the end of the battle – even max level ones.
  • If your active pet is low on health, switch it out with one of your other pets using ‘button four’ on the action bar. This uses a turn.
  • The harder fights gives you bonus difficulty points – either from higher quality pets (rare, uncommon, etc.) or the level/length of the fight.
  • Live pets heal a portion of their health after every fight, provided they took part. The amount healed is 50% of the damage taken.
  • Each battle requires a certain amount of room (on a flat surface) so make sure the ground is not obscured by rocks, cliffs or trees, etc.
  • You won’t be able to start a battle if you’re in combat. Alternatively, if you’re forced into combat with a mob or player during the battle, you will be knocked out of phase and possibly lose the pet you were trying to capture.
  • As you progress, you’ll start battling teams with one or two other critters.
  • Failing to win a battle will not reset the match if you killed at least one of the pets in an opposing team.
  • The forfeit option (next to the trap button) may be used to reset a match if the original trappable pet has not died. Note: your pets will lose a small portion of health as a penalty.


  • When your pet reaches level 3 you can start capturing critters. The ‘Trap’ slot becomes active once they are below 35% health.
  • Traps upgrade via specific achievements, improving your chance to catch higher level pets.
  • You can only capture one pet per battle so choose wisely once you can see the other team.
  • If you manage to capture a pet which has two or three team members, you must win the overall battle, otherwise the ‘trapped’ pet will be lost.


As a horde player, I wasn’t expecting to see this little guy in Durotar, but was really excited to capture something we don’t normally see out here.


Each attempt will use up a turn. Over time, your traps will improve with Strong Traps and Pristine Traps once you attain the relevant achievements. Draenic Traps require a level 2 menagerie from your WoD garrison.

throw trap Attempt to capture
50-50 trap You will know very quickly if your trap missed or not.
Trap success Tipping forward means SUCCESS.
trap-missed Falling backward will indicate your trap has missed.

Pet Quality

  • Higher quality pets have a larger stat allotment each time you level so be on the lookout for rares.
  • There is no way to determine the quality until you engage it in battle.
  • The health bar can be a good indicator to determine quality, especially if you’ve already tamed a wild one of the same type. Rares will have a substantial jump in health compared to the poor, common and to a lesser degree uncommon varieties so use your initial pet as a baseline for comparison.
My list of favourites showing the quality of each pet

You can rename, release, cage (if applicable) or favourite a pet just by right-clicking the pet in your Pet Journal.


For a casual pet collector, BreedIDs or quality may not be that important but if you’re one of the serious pet battlers out there, it should be. BreedIDs are something you need to consider if you want your pets to have the best possible chance to win. More info…


A few addons I’ve found really useful:

  • Rematch – If you plan on battling a lot of tamers each day, this addon makes team changing a breeze. You can even add pets to a levelling queue and sort teams into groups.
  • Battle Pet BreedIDs – see all the BreedIDs in-game. Good to know for any serious pet battler and those who follow my YouTube strategies.
  • Family Familiar Helper – helps track your Family Familiar progress and more recent Family style meta achievements

Pets are account-wide so you should notice the same active pets on each of your toons. However, Pet Tamer challenges can only be completed once per account. If you have duplicate pets or ones you simply don’t want, right-click the pet to cage them to sell in the AH or gift. Wild pets are not tradeable.

So good luck, happy battling.


Disc priest and relic hunter who loves collecting achievements, silver dragon shots and all things pets. You may know me as Cymre Brightblade. Catch all the pet battle strategies on my YouTube channel - CymreJones


July 16, 2012 at 2:37 am

I always look at the screen shots before I read the post and got all excited because I saw they put Matty in Orgrimmar. I was kind of disappointed when I read it wasn’t THAT Matty.

I’m still undecided about battling pets, guess I’ll have to wait and see!

July 16, 2012 at 2:38 am

Wow, that looks pretty awesome so far! Forget raiding and pvpeeing, this is where it’s all at! =P

    July 16, 2012 at 2:48 am

    @Tome – OMG! Seriously you have to try the moonkin against… something. It was so frigging cute!

    @Arv – I was battling after our raid today but thinking I have to do three posts about the last couple of days… better late than never, right? It is quite addictive though as you can see :)

July 16, 2012 at 6:50 am

Is that a giraffe pet?
OMG I want the giraffe!
I just made a post about the barrens giraffe and how i wanted one as a pet!!!

July 16, 2012 at 11:24 am

ARGH!!! They used “my name” for a pet battle trainer! OH NO! I have been trying to stay away from MoP posts, but curiosity got the better of me…

Thank you for this head’s up, Cymre…very much appreciated!

    July 16, 2012 at 11:28 am

    Oh you read one of my Beta posts :P When I saw the name I had to say something.

    Did Tome tell you about the NPC or did you get traffic from my post? :) Anyway good to see you visiting. Much appreciated :)

July 16, 2012 at 11:49 am

Yay for pet battles!!! I must have them all! I wondered who Matty was named after. Now I know. ;)

July 16, 2012 at 11:49 am

Love your blog, Cymre, always have, always will…I saw the traffic link from Sugar, and wanted to check in…

I know it’s just a coincidence, or if anything, is probably named for Matticus, but still….gee whiz Blizz! :)

July 16, 2012 at 12:58 pm

…Okay, as if I weren’t already sold on pet battles. Your description (especially of the moonkin hatchling) has me beyond excited. I might actually go into the beta to play around with this!

July 16, 2012 at 11:42 pm

OMG I need to re-download the beta client now….I challenge you!

July 18, 2012 at 12:27 pm

just want to say awsome job and cant wait to try it out my self

August 22, 2012 at 11:22 pm

Thanks for the guide! I’ve tested two battles on the beta but didn’t really understand it, but I feel smarter now after reading this guide :P

Louise Birkemose
March 30, 2014 at 7:44 pm


I’m a dedicated pet battler and I’ve been using Battle Pet Teams. What annoys me is that the addon seeems to be discontinued and you can’t sort alphabetically.

Anyone knows of a a good addon (that can store looooooads of different teams) and can sort alphabetically?

    March 30, 2014 at 7:54 pm

    You can sort the teams by clicking ‘Ctrl’ while dragging the team and the addon states no limit to the number of teams you can create. It still works fine for me.

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