As a Druid, you can take both the Wild Order (gaining Wild Shape) and the Animal Order (gaining an Animal Companion) via Order Explorer (Druid Feat 2). To be most effective, you would likely wish to change into a battle form and fight alongside your companion. However...

According to the Animal Companion rules:

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

From Command an Animal, the action has the Auditory Trait:

Auditory actions and effects rely on sound. An action with the auditory trait can be successfully performed only if the creature using the action can speak or otherwise produce the required sounds.

And according to the Polymorph trait (which is on all Wild Shape spells):

Unless otherwise noted, the battle form prevents you from casting spells, speaking, and using most manipulate actions that require hands.

From this, it appears that if you change into an animal form, you can't effectively command your animal companion. However, Auditory doesn't specify that you have to speak, only "produce the required sounds".

So, can you consider your animal trained to take commands in various grunts and growls from your animal forms, or are you forever gimped into only using one or the other feature (barring special forms like Thousand Faces which isn't considered a battle form, and thus not subject to the restrictions)?


2 Answers 2


The rules do not specify that the sounds required by Command an Animal must be words. That is to say, there's no indication that Command an Animal is language-dependent. I see no reason that your animal companion would not understand your growls or whatever, and have ruled accordingly.


Also, druids have 'Wild Empathy' feature, that says

You have a connection to the creatures of the natural world that allows you to communicate with them on a rudimentary level. You can use Diplomacy to Make an Impression on animals and to make very simple Requests of them. In most cases, wild animals will give you time to make your case.

While druid is in animal form - that ability doesn't go away, allowing them to communicate with companion in a form that is likely enough to give orders.


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