Pet Specs: 3.1 Beast Master Edition

Pet specs have been shaken up a bit with the advent of 3.1, so let’s talk about how you will ideally spec your three types of pets. First up, pet specs for us Beast Masters (I’ll cover you non-extra-talent-points folks in a later post!)



You will probably want your Ferocity pet’s talent tree to look like this. This scoops up everything you need to ensure your pet is the instrument of your vengeance in your average raid or heroic. Of course, there are adjustments you can make if you are solo’ing or leveling and would rather pick up, say, the stamina or healy-type talents. But honestly, Heart of the Phoenix never once worked for me anyway, so I didn’t really have a problem with ditching it… >.>



Your cunning pet is a very versatile creature who can be used in a variety of situations, and as such I consider his talent tree to be the most flexible in terms of talents that you do/don’t want to take. I have found that this works very well from a solo’ing or questing standpoint. I know Cunning pets are often overlooked these days but honestly, equipped with things like Owl’s Focus, Feeding Frenzy, Wolverine Bite and Roar of Recovery (now with a shorter cooldown), they are not to be underestimated. Try one out and see what you think.



With Thunderstomp no longer Gorilla-exclusive and some great new tankytalents, the Tenacity changes were really great. I have found this to be a very good pet-tanking build. You purposefully bypass some of the typical “DPS” talents in favor of making your pet able to take it, if not dish it out. There is some flexibility here if you’re not a big fan of Last Stand and would rather put the Avoidance+Last Stand points somewhere else, although I’ve found it to be quite a lifesaver in multiple tricky situations, myself… I wouldn’t go without it.

Welp, there ya have it. Toss me your questions and comments, and the “non-Beast Master edition” is coming up soon!

24 thoughts on “Pet Specs: 3.1 Beast Master Edition”

  1. IMO – granted i’ve only made it to 80 with one of my hunters, and am far from being extremely knowledgable in all things hunter. (which is why i read this blog)

    I would on the tenacity build, go with points in natural armor and pet barding instead of roar of sacrifice and wild hunt. if your pet is your tank, you shouldn’t be getting hit, making ROS somewhat useless. wild hunt is nice for all the extra stamina, but i think a 20% bonus to armor + 2% dodge would make up for that lost stamina. 2% dodge, along with the 4% crit resist of grace of the mantis makes your pet pretty tough.

    and what about taunt? as long as cower doesn’t get turned on accidentally, between taunt and growl, and thunderstomp, there isn’t much that these guys can’t tick off.

    I do agree in the last stand being a good emergency button, but avoidance is situational.. only helps out during AOE’s

  2. HotP never worked for you? It’s always worked perfectly for me. I won’t part with it, either – having an emergency rez for my pet mid-combat is far more important to me than another 3% pet damage.

    I also ditched Dash. Mijikai has Charge, which is more than enough speed during raids. I don’t know the numbers for Cobra Reflexes, but I’m just throwing my starter points into Great Stamina anyway for better survivability.

  3. I’m curious as to why you bypassed Charge on your Ferocity pet. I took that one on the advice of some guildies but have been waffling as to whether or not I should keep it.

  4. Well , with Heart of the Phoenix , you need to make it into a macro
    /cast heart of the Phoenix
    then put it on your action bar , then it will be usable . Give that a try

  5. well when raiding as BM , Charge is not really needed , that is a waste of focus energy for your pet , he only needs Dash to get to that enemy fast , and the stun is not necessary when you have Intimidation . Most mods are immune to stun anyway .

    Charge is great from pvp and soloing

  6. that works to , but i like to have my pet’s family abilities on there , even cower and growl cause of the stupid bug . so that is why i have it on my action bar

  7. @Zalenna

    The way I see it, Dash may work for speed, but doesn’t give the damage boost. The focus difference is 5, and the occasional threatless stun causes me to consider it well spent.

    As for the Cower/Growl issue…I ended up making macros to switch back and forth between the two, and put them on a button in my AutoBar. Addons are nifty like that. 🙂

  8. Well .. I have been doing more PvP of late, but thanks for the advice! On pets that I’m not intending to use for PvP or soloing I’ll forget about Charge.

  9. Get rid of Phoenix? No WAY. The auto proc does NOT work, but put it in your pet’s action bar and hit it when the pet dies in the middle of a boss fight and poof you’ve got a 100% pet back. I’ve used it a couple times in the last few days. Also a nasty surprise for folks in PvP. Nope, that’s one I am NOT willing to give up.

  10. Out of curiosity, why did you bypass Natural Armor and Barding for the tenacity build?

    If you’re assuming that the pet will be tanking, he’s gonna be taking melee damage more often than not, and I’d guess that the armor damage reduction would be greater than the health gained from Wild Hunt. Am I missing something?

  11. that’s a really good point about heart of the phoenix and lick yer wounds – I think I may just dust mine off and see how Windpaw fairs next time I head into a raid. My guess is he’ll do just fine.

  12. Re: Dash VS Charge (for a raid standpoint, anyway)

    Personally, I take Dash. In order to get charge, you have to put a point into Stamina or Armour, which then means one less point for DPS talents. I found that in situations where my pet was going to do 4% (or 8% or 12%) more stamina just would not save them. Cobra Strikes is a DPS increase, else it would be pretty useless, so I’d always take that over Stamina.

    The damage boost from Charge is negligable for boss fights. 25% Damage boost to a mere one attack, or 3% boost on every single attack your pet does? The latter will by far be better.

    For soloing, charge wins out with the immobilize effect, but then again, I’d be using a tenacity or cunning for solo anyway.

  13. I personally wouldn’t have a tank-pet spec without last stand, but I wish they hadn’t made roar of sacrifice a must-get in order to get wild hunt. I’ve never used ROS so to me it’s a wasted point. >.<

    For my kitty Samurai I only have 1 point each in shark attack and wild hunt, so I could get HotP and lick your wounds. Both of those have helped a ton in keeping her alive during raids, especially at Heigan. (she gets hit with a wave, I call her back to me and pop LYW, then send her back at full health.)

  14. I’m with a few posters here – HotP works fine and dandy, and is great for fights where if you make one mistake (not pulling it back in time for Sarth flame waves, for instance) your pet dies.

  15. @ Heart of the Phoenix – I suppose my deal with Heart of the Phoenix is…

    a.) regardless of how many of you other people it worked for, it did not work for me unless I manually pressed it… which I often forgot to do… and
    b.) when I did remember to use it, my pet invariably died again five seconds later. Every. Single. Time. So it was one big waste. See, when my pet dies, it either means it’s gonna be a wipe, or it’s just a really pet-unfriendly fight. Whether it’s because I am just raiding easier content, or because I am OCD about watching my pet, or because I am just getting lucky, I dunno, but that’s just how it has been for me. So… it really never helped me much I fear =/ Subject to change if I run into content where I need it more often.

    Of course, what I want to make clear here, is that if it has worked for you, then please keep it! These are just intended as guides, not gospel. Pike =/= be-all-and-end-all-hunterdom. I want you guys to experiment and do what works best for you. ^_^

    @ Charge vs. Dash – Basically what Faulsey said. Because you can get Dash in the first tier you can optimize talent placement. For example, putting a point in Charge means you can’t max out both Wild Hunt and Shark Attack, and the DPS gain from Charge does not compare to the extra point in the aforementioned bottom-level talents. That would be my thoughts anyways, though I’d be curious to see math if my conclusion is wrong.

    @ Armor vs. Stamina – I have always been under the impression that Stamina was better in more situations than Armor was, which is why you stick your BM filler point in Endurance Training over Thick Hide. I saw a bunch of math once supporting this, however, it was a long time ago, so things could have changed. Regardless, I would be curious to see if anyone has done any theorycraft regarding Wild Hunt vs. the armor talents, if so, I would *love* to see it. I am still learning just like everyone else, and am often wrong, and would love to correct myself if I can.

  16. Sarai mentions another reason why Dash > Charge for raids (notice I said for raids, I leveled with Charge and love it). There are many situations when we have to pull our pets back to us. Put /petfollow /cast Dash /cast Mend Pet (and as mentioned add /cast Lick Your Wounds for those that have it talented) into a macro and you’ve just increased your pet’s ability to do the Safety Dance or survive a Flame Wall.

    And Pike, I feel your pain with Heart of the Phoenix. There are many times where I fired off HotP only to watch my poor pet die again seconds later. And FYI, you should not be able to put HotP on autocast anymore. The bug wasn’t that it wouldn’t autocast, it was that it was looking like it should autocast. I think it was allegedly fixed with 3.1 (where you can’t set it to autocast anymore) but none of my 3 Ferocity pets currently have it specced so I can’t check it.

  17. Turtle, the best pet to level with? Thunderstomp, 50% damage reduction when withrawn into shell and glyph of mending. As most Hunter’s know, keep your pet alive and you are doing ok!
    Even at a high level it has it’s uses. Very easy to transfer aggro onto with Misdirection.
    Haven’t tried it myself, but it makes sense to me!
    The Orc

  18. Can someone please post a link for a good BM raiding build. I am an SV hunter with dual spec I would like to put into BM. Preferably something that includes the 61 point talent.

    I was going to just steal Tawyns off the armory but was worried I would end up with some crazy spec you were just trying for a day for kicks.

    Thanks in advance,

    Payne (Madoran)

  19. @ Payne – Tawyn’s current BM build or a very similar variant of it (for example, swapping one point in Improved Mend Pet for one point in Spirit Bond) will net you maximum Beast Master DPS according to Elitist Jerks and their spreadsheets. I have found it myself to work very well. I was originally iffy about dropping so many points from Marksman and plunking them in SV… but really, the DPS is quite, quite good.

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