I am in the mood for some good fluff. And you know what’s fluffy and fuzzy or sometimes scaly? Pets! I’m an animal lover and that extends to anime animals. Try saying that ten times fast!
The thing about pets in anime is that half the time they aren’t really pets. They’re little fighting pocket monsters or magical spirit dogs or something. They’re not little companions that you feed and walk and groom. But there are some of those as well and here are 5 of my favourite ones:
5. Makkachin (Yuri!!! on Ice)
Victors big brown poodle doesn’t have that big a role in the series but he manages to capture everyone’s heat whenever he’s onscreen. Playful and sociable, Makkachin resembles his master, or maybe it’s the other way around. Well groomed, light hearted and with a tendency to pounce of people.
Unlike his master though, Makkachin seems very well trained and is clam indoors. I don’t remember ever hearing him bark which makes him sort of an ideal house pet!
4. Black Hayate (Fullmetal Alchemist)
Fullmetal Alchemist is sort of a full plate. There’s a lot of characters, a whole lot going on and tons of world building to booth. It’s a series that crammed tight and yet they still had room for one adorable little pup.
Black Hayate is Riza’s adorable black and white shiba inu puppy and let me tell you, if they had dared kill him off, I would have dropped the series! Hayate had a few house training hiccups but he’s always been loyal and protective of Riza which is why I was constantly worried. I mean Riza doesn’t exactly have the safest job around. And the series isn’t always kind to dogs. Thankfully it was a happy ending for Black Hayate, one of the few to be had.
3. Luna and Artemis (Sailor moon)
Ok so this is a cheat because Luna and Artemis aren’t actually cats exactly. But they thought they were for a while and they get treated as such by most people so I figure they get a pass. Besides it’s my list and I like Luna and Artemis.
I was just going to choose one out of the two but I literally could pick a favourite. This doesn’t happen to me often. First it was all like, I love Artemis’ sass but then Luna’s understanding and they are both adorable and almost identical… In the end, it’s a two for one! Do you like one more than the other?
2. Ein (Cowboy Bebopop)
The second and first positions on this list are completely interchangeable. In the end I just chose by relative air time…
It takes a special type of dog to steal the spotlight form the amazing cast of Cowboy Bebop. And Ein is just that special, even though he’s just a corgi. Ok so he’s been artificially enhanced to be way smarter than your average corgi but that doesn’t really explain where he got all that swagger and charisma!
Here’s a fun random fact which I hope is true because I quite like it. Ein is voice acted by an actual welsh corgi which makes him the most authentic pet on the list in a way.
Not really pets
My favourite evil (debatable, I have a feeling Kyubey simply doesn’t operate on the same morality standards, if any). Kyubey is an incubator and the main antagonist of his series, representing cruel and inescapable faith! But he looks like a kitty rabbit and he shares a bedroom with Madoka just like any good kitten would. The relationship between Kyubey and the rest of the cast, even after the main reveal, is one of the elements I enjoyed most about the series.
I’m pretty sure Nyanko would be horrified if I called him a pet and threaten to eat me or something. He probably wouldn’t do it though but it’s not impossible. My alcohol content is pretty high after all. Despite this, and being an all powerful ancient beast yokai, Nyanko is one of the most cat-like entries here.He likes to play with grass or laze around all day, he pretty much only thinks about eating and isn’t too picky but tends to prefer meat. Well cooked and seasoned of course. And he expects Natsume to be at his beck and call at all times. Quintessential cat.
Ok so Mii is a mummy but if ever there was a CPDCT show it would be How to Keep A Mummy. Man that series was adorable. And Mii is the cutest thing. I sort of wish I could have a tiny mummy too now.
1. Haru (My Roommate is a Cat )
One of the most charming aspects of My Roommate is a Cat is that we got to experience the story from both Haru and Subaru’s perspective which really drove home the differences. Haru is a cat and she is a pet act. One that gets domesticated through the series at that.
Haru’s world is big and sometimes frightening and terribly unfair. It also revolves entirely around her. But the bonds that form between her and Subaru were truly heartwarming and reminded me of all the best parts of having a pet.
Do you have any favourite anime pets? Why? Do you like dogs more than cats? Oh man, now I’ve done it…
40 thoughts on “Top 5 Anime Pets”
Poyo poyo is the best cat! Evah! Well, except Nyanko-sensei/Medara and yes, he’d probably be quite angry if you called him a cat and remind you that his other form is quite noble. But if you’ll share your sake that would go a long ways for forgiveness. And I’m not sure where he lands on dogness scale but Kuro from Dog and Scissors is a fav also. Haru, of course, is very special. Also on the is he/isn’t here dog scale is Shiro of Hozuki ‘s Coolheadedness. He WAS a dog but now I guess he’s a demon? And yes, I have to send another stroke for the horse, Maron, in Silver Spoon. Far as I know he is the only horse with a real character type part in any anime? I’m kind of a horse nut so… great list!
I’m scared of watching Silver Spoon. Sms like any farm set story would involve butchering some animal….
Animal butchering is certainly no worse to watch than half the shonen fight animes out there 😛 but no, no butchering in Silver Spoon. All the animals are well cared for and happy within reason. The worse you have to deal with is everyone gushing over how delicious the pork is… after you’ve met the pigs.
I’m not preaching I just know myself. I will cry and then be honestly and unpleasantly sad for many days if I watch animals get butchered – yes even imaginary picture ones. So I just stay away from that. I might think about watching Silver Spoons…
No judgement here. I was vegetarian for about 30 years and I really detest factory farming for so many reasons. I don’t like seeing any animal or person, or even stuffed animals harmed LOL. I understand. My main gripe about slasher horror is… I can’t watch.
One anime animal I can think of right now is Nira the dog from Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru!
Oh oh, I’m watching that real soon
Oohh I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!!
I should, it sounds like everything I enjoy in a show
Happy to see Ein was here, but sad to not hear anything about Ebichu. I’m curious about My Roommate is a Cat…
sorry Mik. I never watched Ebichu
Usually when people talk about “pet” characters in anime, it’s the mascot characters– the cute little chibi monsters in shounen anime/manga that publishing companies can sell as 3rd-party merchandise. I was kind of expecting that here. But you (mostly) found real animals! Not gonna lie, though: I would have been very disappointed if Haru was not #1 on this list ಠ_ಠ. Well done.
I think I would have included Inuyashiki’s dog from the eponymous anime/manga as an honourable mention, just because I remember that little one vividly for some reason, even though she wasn’t a major presence in the series at all. Hiroya Oku’s work tends to be pretty dark, so I was worried about the dog throughout.
Also Juli from Brothers Conflict. Because I’m friends with a bunch of Red Squirrels in the local forest, and they all have a unique personality and attitude like Juli (who isn’t a Red but bear with me). Also, squirrel mascots in anime are unusually rare considering their cuteness, IMO.
I haven’t seen either Inuyashiki or Brothers Conflict but knowing the latter features a squirrel gets major points with me
So nice seeing Haru on the list, #1 even. Really enjoyed My Roommate is a Cat.
I know Kyubey is an honorable mention but seeing him here anyway is still WEIRD lol.
I just cant quite bring myself to think of him as a pet….
You know Kyubey would make for an excellent stress relief object, because deserves all the punishment he gets, and he can’t be destroyed.
wow! I don’t know if I could
If Kyubey were a pet, I would build a temple dedicated to worship our new cat god, Kyubey-sama …
Seems like the smart way to go
Good picks, at least the ones I know.
It’s funny, I’ve always been more of a dog person in real life, but when I started thinking about pets from anime, nearly all of the first ones I thought of that I liked were cats. Maybe I like anime cats’ personalities better than real life cats or something, I don’t know.
Anyway, my top 5 anime cats:
Shamisen, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya
Jiji, Kiki’s Delivery Service
Chito, Flying Witch
And some of my other favorite non-cats besides those you mentioned:
Ton-chan (aquatic turtle), K-On
Maron (horse), Silver Spoon
Akamaru (dog), Naruto
Menchi (dog/emergency rations), Excel Saga
Those are all great picks. Maybe in a while I can make an animal specific list. There are a surprising number of pet turtles in anime
Nyanko-sensei is my favourite, but I also love Ein. Oh, and Evangelion’s Pen Pen, of course – gotta love those warm-water penguins!
I… forgot Pen Pen! I shouldn’t be allowed near lists.
You and I both….
Oh wow, I forgot Pen… I objectively failed this list.
Because of how well liked EIN is many welsh corgis are named after him. In fact if i had one i’d actually name one EIN as well too.
I like cardigan corgis myself like the voice actor
Fun Fact Araki actually really likes dogs and that he only uses animal cruelty as a way to make you effectively hate the villain and that he makes characters even more uglier when they are a villain.
I saw that Fullmetal Alchemist coat and my heart skipped a beat. Thought you were going in a different, grimmer direction with that one.
Nope – burning that right out of my mind…
Now I want a pet mini Mummy along with my pet duck! It could use the duck as a mount.
I guess a mini-bi-pedal anything aling with some banages would work as well.
I feel like we might have more luck breeding a mini-biped rather than an undead.. plus we could upsell the banages!
I feel like undead pets have certain advantages though. Ok you work on mummy duck and I’ll try briging a mini humanoid back to life
That’s a plan! I ‘ll keep you updated!
Ooh, nice list. I didn’t know but am not surprised that Ein was voiced by a proper corgi. I’ve always wondered how voice actors feel voicing pets, and how that looks in the studio. I mean you come in, and then you wait around until you get to meow or bark.
Pet voice direction is also interesting. Sometimes they want to be close to the real thing (as with Kayano Ai voicing Chito in Flying Witch), and sometimes they make it blatantly obvious that this is a voice actor (as in this season’s Kakushigoto; I couldn’t find out who voices the doggy).
I’m definitely a cat person, and I think my favourite cat (putting aside Haru, who’s actually voiced for her protagonist spot) would still be Iori from School Rumble. Given how over-the-top cartoony the show tends to be, it’s amazing how grounded and cat like the portrayed and animated him. Iori on the School Rumble wiki site.
Also, on the non-cat-or-dog front, I’m quite fond of Harukana Receive‘s Kamekichi, and Toradora‘s Inko-chan. Interestingly, both are named after the animal they are.
Both ar great choice. I do love Inko but I wonder if he woud be annying to actually live with…
That is very possible. I don’t think I’d personally get birds. As for turtles, I think they’re popular in anime because they’re excellent apartment critters. There’s a tank with a few of them in a tiny apartment in Wave Listen to Me this season.
I’ve been trying to remember the most unusual pets I can remember. A buff Lady and the main characters teacher in Lance and Mask has pangolin, and a side character in one of the Rolling Girls arcs has a small koala that constantly clings to her arm. School Rumble is probably the only show I’ve seen where a giraffe emerges from under a kotatsu – his name’s, I think, Pyotr. (Did you know that secretly keeping a giraffe on school grounds or in shrines isn’t a good idea?)
Great picks! Ein is my #1 for sure lol.
And though this isn’t technically anime and he’d probably object to being called a pet, you can’t get a much better companion than Aang’s flying bison Appa in Avatar: The Last Airbender. He is adorable, loyal, and useful, all essential traits for a fictional pet.
I’m a little ashamed to admit I have never seen Avatar. But just the fact that it’s a flying bison sort of rules already
Nyanko sensei and Mii kun ❤️
Right!?! They just brighten up your day