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5 Best Ranger Animal Companion 5e [Forge Bonds With Nature’s Allies]

Best Ranger Animal Companion 5e
  Written By: Ashish Arya
Updated On: 01/02/2024
Est. Reading: 7 minutes

Heading out into the vast landscapes of your favorite D&D campaign, there’s nothing quite like having a loyal companion by your side.

As a ranger, you can call upon the aid of a ranger animal companion 5e, and this adds an extra layer of immersion and strategic depth to your gameplay.

These valiant creatures become part of your story, fighting alongside you in battles and sharing in both your triumphs and defeats. In this article, we’ll be taking a look at some solid options for your perfect in-game best friend.

Knowing which creature to choose as your animal companion can be daunting given D&D’s vast bestiary. From stealthy panthers to stoic wolves, there’s an extensive range of options available for you to choose from, each with their own unique capabilities that amplify with every level up.

It’s imperative that you familiarize yourself with these traits so that you’d know how they mesh together with both yours and your party’s strengths.

What is an Animal Companion?

In the exciting world of Dungeons and Dragons 5e, one of the standout character classes is the Beastmaster Ranger. Unique to this subclass, Beastmasters can invite a loyal animal companion into their journey.

What is an Animal Companion

At its core, an animal companion is a creature you can summon to fight by your side as part of your ranger abilities. In the game rules, it’s noted that your animal companion must be a beast with a challenge rating (CR) of 1/4 or lower – this keeps things balanced for fair gameplay.

As your character level increases, so too do the capabilities of your animal companion. They become intertwined with your progression and mirror your abilities; they level up when you level up.

It’s not just about higher health points, but it also includes attack bonuses and additional skills which can be pivotal during intense battle moments.

Different animals have varying attributes and serve different roles in combat. Some animals offer high-speed mobility for scouting or flanking enemies whereas others provide heavy-hitting combat power.

Tactical decision-making plays a vital factor in optimizing their use which ultimately will shape your character build. Choosing the right animal companion isn’t just about stats on paper but also how it complements your gameplay style.

Your chosen creature can bridge gaps in team compositions or further exemplify strengths making this choice an exciting strategic decision in every D&D campaign.

Also Read: DnD 5E Basic Rules [Your Starting Point For Epic Adventures]

5 best Ranger Animal Companion 5e

Venturing into the wilderness as a ranger is often a solitary endeavor, but having a trusty animal companion by your side can lend a sense of camaraderie and added assistance in battles.

5 best Ranger Animal Companion 5e

Each companion offers its own unique abilities and attributes that can complement your fighting style or simply provide you an enjoyable role-playing experience. Here are the top five ranger animal companions to consider for your next adventure.

Wolf: Your Loyal Battle Ally

Regarded as one of nature’s most effective predators, the wolf is an ideal choice for those seeking a balance of offensive capabilities and supportive qualities.

Wolves possess a high hit point pool coupled with pack tactics, granting them advantage on attack rolls when near an ally. This makes wolves exceptionally effective in group combat situations.

Their trip attack ability lets them potentially knock enemies prone on hit, making them great at disrupting enemy lines and creating openings for more vulnerable party members.

Wolves also have keen hearing and smell that give advantage on Perception checks related to hearing or smell, enhancing their scouting potential in varied terrains where visibility might be compromised.

A wolf’s speed of 40 feet makes it not only efficient at chasing down fleeing foes but also capable of maintaining its position within the ever-changing dynamics of combat scenarios.

Though not flashy compared to some options, the wolf’s blend of raw durability and teamwork-enhancing capabilities make it an invaluable asset for any Ranger looking to bolster their party’s front line while retaining some utility outside of combats.

Remember to have your character bond with the animal throughout their adventure; after all, it’s not just about their fighting skills but the strong bond you share in your journey through various challenges together.

Giant Eagle: The Skyborne Scout

Taking to the sky can offer a fresh perspective, and there’s no better animal companion for that purpose than the Giant Eagle. Its main allure is its impressive flying speed of 80 feet, giving you unparalleled mobility on the battlefield and unmatched scouting capabilities in open terrains.

Despite being skilled flyers, these majestic creatures aren’t pushovers in battle. They boast multiattack capabilities with their beak and talons, providing consistent damage output every round.

Their high strength allows them to carry medium-sized party members through the air, adding an exciting strategic depth to combat and traversal scenarios.

What sets Giant Eagles apart further is their keen sight, granting advantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks involving sight. This feature coupled with their ability to understand common and Auran languages opens up unique role-playing interactions that far surpass most companions’ abilities.

The Giant Eagle is an excellent pick if you’re looking for a trustworthy airborne scout that can handle itself in a fight while also providing unique role-play opportunities due to its language comprehension abilities.

Also Read: Cloak Of Invisibility 5E 2024 [Disappear From Sight In DnD]

Panther: The Agile Hunter

Panthers are an agile and stealthy choice for those who thrive on speed and cunning in battle. With faster movement speed compared to many other options at 50 feet, Panthers make swift companions who can leap into action from shadows.

One of their standout features is Pounce – if a panther moves at least 20 feet straight towards a creature and hits it with a claw attack on the same turn, it knocks the target prone.

Once prone, the Panther makes one bite attack as a bonus action – seizing control of the tempo of any encounter.

Panthers boast stealthiness seen amongst few animal companions. Their +6 Stealth bonus enables them sneak up on unsuspecting foes or slip past them undetected.

Their keen sense of smell gives advantage on perception checks involving smell – amplified by their proficiency in Perception stats.

Perfect for hit-and-run strategies or ambush tactics, Panthers synergize well with Rangers that can maximize the use of this companion’s agility and stealth.

They offer a distinct blend of speed, power and subtlety to those who seek an edge in surprise attacks and swift maneuvers in combat.

Giant Owl: Your Vigilant Eye in the Sky

Owls are naturally mysterious and magnetic, but the Giant Owl takes it to a whole new level. With its impressive wingspan and majestic presence, this avian companion is more than just a pretty sight.

This creature’s exceptional speed (60ft flying) can easily cover vast distances, offering superb mobility during combat scenarios. This becomes particularly useful when you’re facing opponents that rely on distance or height for advantage.

Giant Owls come with a gifted night vision known as Darkvision and proficient Perception skill making them ideal for night-time reconnaissance and surveillance missions. What’s more? They possess the ability to understand several languages, enabling them to act as translators for situations where languages might pose barriers.

Besides these significant attributes, their talons hold not only fierceness but also precision; allowing opportunity for both attack and rescue operations.

But remember, just as striking a relationship with a noble creature such as the Giant Owl provides numerous benefits, it also calls for genuine respect and mutual trust in your journey together.

Saber-toothed Tiger: Your Fearsome Jungle Companion

Roaming through your D&D campaign with a Saber-toothed Tiger by your side automatically associates power and awe to your character’s persona. However, its value goes far beyond aesthetics or intimidation factor alone.

Known for their strength, these prehistoric powerhouses carry an incredible Pounce feature that allows them to knock an enemy prone if it moves at least 20 feet straight towards its target.

Acting as an efficient attack initiator creating opportunities for follow-up attacks. They’re packed with 40 hit points which makes them one of the toughest animal companions in terms of raw survivability.

Their AC value is also high compared to other companion options; adding another layer of defense capability against formidable enemies.

The Saber-toothed Tiger’s abilities present strategic benefits designed for outright aggression and sustainability on the battlefield, making them a perfect choice for Ranger’s seeking high-damage, direct confrontational style.

Just like any companionship, remember that this tiger is not a mere tool but an in-game character with its distinctive personality and quirks.

Its respect and trust must be earned as you share fascinating adventures together. After all, the strength of your bond reflects in your battles and quests.

Also Read: 13 Best Utility Spells In D&D 5E [Enhance Your Magic Arsenal]

FAQs About Ranger Animal Companion 5e

Can a ranger benefit from the Sharpshooter feat in 5e?

Absolutely! The Sharpshooter feat is an excellent choice for rangers. It allows you to shoot at long range without disadvantage and even ignore cover. Plus, it gives you a chance to add an extra 10 damage.

What is the advantage of the ‘Crossbow Expert’ feat for a ranger?

Crossbow Expert can be a strategic choice for rangers, particularly if you’re using hand crossbows. This feat enables you to bypass loading properties of crossbows and shoot in close combat without disadvantage.

Is the Alert feat useful for rangers in DND 5e?

Yes, the Alert feat can be advantageous. It offers +5 to initiative, meaning your ranger would be quicker to act in battle. It also prevents enemies from getting an advantage on attack rolls as a result of being hidden from you.

How does the Mobile feat affect rangers in Dungeons and Dragons 5e?

The Mobile feat increases your movement speed by 10 feet – an excellent boost for hit-and-run tactics. Also, it lets you ditch opportunity attacks when making melee attacks on enemies – this enhances your mobility during skirmishes.

Why is War Caster considered one of the best feats for spellcasting rangers?

The War Caster feat lets spellcasting oriented rangers maintain concentration on spells better by giving advantage on concentration saving throws. Plus, it allows casting even when hands are full and offers opportunity attacks with spells.


Selecting the right Ranger Animal Companion in D&D 5e is a blend of strategic thinking and one that resonates with your playstyle.

Each companion presents unique capabilities, strengths, and engaging role-play opportunities. Whether you desire a loyal Wolf, a flying Eagle or Owl, an agile Panther, or the powerful Saber-toothed Tiger, remember to build a deep bond with them.

These companions aren’t mere tools but integral facets of your adventure – fighting beside you and sharing in your triumphs and defeats.


  • Ashish Arya

    I'm a tech enthusiast and lifelong gamer, hailing from the beautiful city of Chandigarh. My passions range from immersing myself in worlds like GTA V, COD, SIMS, Roblox and Minecraft to exploring the latest innovations in laptops and technology. Armed with a Bachelors Degree in Computer Application, I love sharing my insights through writing and engaging with fellow enthusiasts. Join me on my journey through the ever-evolving realms of gaming and tech!