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I was attempting to make a Hero Forge character today and came up with a question. I was making a Tabaxi and it wouldn't let me put shoes on because of how their model's feet are. Now that may just be a restraint on the site, but I was wondering if there was any RAW precedent for the more animal-like creatures wearing shoes or boots. Like I imagine it would be hard for a Kenku to wear any sort of shoes because of the bird-like feet and how a Tabaxi's foot is shaped.

In the case of magic items, say the Boots of Speed, the DMG (pg 140-141) has this tidbit:

In most cases, a magic item that's meant to be worn can fit a creature regardless of size or build. Many magic garments are made to be easily adjustable, or they magically adjust themselves to the wearer.

Rare exceptions exist. If the story suggests a good reason for an item to fit only creatures of a certain size or shape, you can rule that it doesn't adjust. For example, armor made by the drow might fit elves only. Dwarves might make items usable only by dwarf-sized and dwarf-shaped characters. When a nonhumanoid tries to wear an item, use your discretion as to whether the item functions as intended. A ring placed on a tentacle might work, but a yuan-ti with a snakelike tail instead of legs can't wear boots.

So my questions are, RAW, can the more animal races wear shoes/boots, and/or can they wear magic shoes/boots?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I am not familiar enough to answer for 5e, but for what it’s worth, I believe 3.5e specifically addressed this issue and explicitly said creatures basically always have every magic item slot, even if things have to be reorganized or re-imagined, and magic items would refit to match whatever a creature had. \$\endgroup\$ – KRyan Apr 3 '18 at 0:51
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    \$\begingroup\$ Why doesn't that DMG quote answer your question? \$\endgroup\$ – Icyfire Apr 3 '18 at 1:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Icyfire That quote only addresses particular, special items, not particular, (maybe?) special feet. \$\endgroup\$ – KRyan Apr 3 '18 at 1:41
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Yes, they can wear magic shoes/boots.

The above quote in your question does answer this:

In most cases, a magic item that's meant to be worn can fit a creature regardless of size or build. Many magic garments are made to be easily adjustable, or they magically adjust themselves to the wearer.

Magic items adjust themselves to fit the wearer, according to RAW. This includes magic boots.

When a nonhumanoid tries to wear an item, use your discretion as to whether the item functions as intended.

Tabaxi are described/categorised as catlike humanoids, while Kenku are also considered humanoids. This more specific rule does not apply to them.

Therefore, magic items (including boots) will adjust themselves to fit the feet of these two races. How they do so is for the DM to interpret (perhaps they become open-toed sandals or something similar), but according to RAW, they will do so.

As for non-magical footwear

That's for the DM to work out. While I can't find any images showcasing them wearing shoes/boots, there are images of them wearing foot strappings, as with the Tabaxi minstrel below, which apparently comes from an official 5e resource, Tomb of Annihilation (I don't have this resource and cannot confirm its authenticity, but the image comes from D&D Beyond and the site attributes the image to that adventure):

Tabaxi minstrel

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