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In my DnD 3.5 game I'm lvl 14 and I'm getting a dragon cohort using the dragon cohort feat and after talking with my gm we decided a very young red dragon would suit me the best.

So from what I understand you give your dragon cohort class levels and every second year he must take a point into his racial hd and after 3 of these points and a total of 6 years he will advance in his age category, at least from Wyrmling-Young and with red dragons. I really want just a pure dragon so if possible I want him to remain as close to this as possible.

Now I have a few questions regarding dragons as cohorts.

  1. Is there any way to advance the dragons age to another age category without having to wait 6 years? Magic, feats or anything.
  2. Is there any way to give the dragon advancements in his racial hd when he's leveling instead of giving him class levels?
  3. And if there's no way to advance the dragons racial hd is there any class which has the prerequisite true dragon?
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The rule that says that a dragon "is required to devote a level every few years to its dragon 'class,' reflecting the extra Hit Die or level adjustment it gains from aging" is from the Draconomicon section on Dragons as Player Characters (141-4), and, as such, it doesn't apply to a dragon befriended through the feat Dragon Cohort (104 and 138-9). Thus, like any other cohort, a dragon cohort advances as the DM decides it advances. So such a dragon's advancement, for example, could be exclusively by gaining more racial Hit Dice… or could be by taking levels of commoner so that it can be a dragon of the people! (I recommend the DM have this latter choice be extremely rare and suspect that, in all likelihood, the dragon'll probably advance by taking levels of sorcerer.)

Beyond the dragon-only prestige classes in the Draconomicon, undoubtedly a few others exist in Web articles, magazines, and sourcebooks, but only the prestige class dragon ascendant (90-2) is awesomely better than what a typical dragon gets from having levels in some base classes or even, sometimes, its racial Hit Dice, and that prestige class is quite a ways out of reach of a wyrmling, even a red!

If the need arises to advance quickly a dragon's age category, see Is there a way to make a wyrmling dragon become an adult via anything from any book? To summarize, I recommend a friendly necromancer (oxymoron notwithstanding) cast on the dragon the officially licensed 8th-level Sor/Wiz spell hasten the end [necro] (Holy Orders of the Stars 70) and a friendly cleric follow that spell with the 7th-level Clr spell greater restoration [conj] (PH 272).

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Wouldn't the Leadership feat's rules concerning advancement of a Cohort override the dragon's normal advancement, in any case? After all, the Dragon Cohort feat just adds some rules about what dragons you can pick as cohorts to the existing Leadership feat rules, it doesn't seem to otherwise modify the existing rules for advancing a cohort. It even says that cohorts aren't allowed to advance if their XP total would bring them above the required 2 levels below the character. \$\endgroup\$ – nijineko Feb 1 '17 at 4:54

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