- New - A guide to making a Pistol/Gunslinger Build
- New - A guide to making a Melee Build
- New - Scav Magazine - All locations and details
- For New Players - Read the walkthrough.
- New - Open Season
- New - Power Play Quest
- New - Raider Outposts
- New - Nuka World Endings Guide - Options and Benefits
- The Grand Tour
- Faction Perks and New SPECIAL Ranks in Nuka World
- Gage (Companion)
Fallout 4: Dogmeat Guide
Companion Benefits, Level, and Where to Find Dog Armor
This guide to Dogmeat discusses the benefits to keeping her around as your main companion (though all companions have benefits), and how you can make good use of the dog companion in your travels. I'll also reveal where the Dog Armor can be found for those not in-the-know, and elaborate on some tests I did to determine how well dogmeat keeps up as the player's level rises.
About the Dog
If you're confused because your follower is named 'dog' like mine, it's because a conversation early-game didn't happen - it doesn't matter, the dog's name is Dogmeat. Dogmeat is the first companion you'll meet in Fallout 4, and for many players is the last ally they'll ever really need. While it's worth traveling with other Companions for a time in order to do their special quests and raise the relationship with them to get their special hidden Perk, it's usually back to bringing Dogmeat once that's done unless you've got a favorite. Some prefer playing completely solo, for sneaky purposes.
Dogmeat cannot die, and will recover after a time when injured. If you'd like to get her back into the fight, you can run up and use a stimpak with the action button to restore some of her life. I did some testing by shooting my dog with a reliable weapon and determined that a stimpak will fully restore Dogmeat's considerable life. She seems to have at least 400 at level 18, though resistances come into play - she can take about that much damage, regardless. 14 blasts from a 31 damage weapon brought Dogmeat to critical, and it took another 14 to bring it down again after using a Stimpak. So you can damage Dogmeat, be careful where you fire when your companion has engaged a target in melee.
Dogmeat Level Up
Yes, Dogmeat seems to scale in level with your character. At level 60, it took 40 shots from my 31 damage weapon to bring Dogmeat down. Very nice! I originally only had logic to back this, but testing proved it. When playing at a low level, Dogmeat was not invincible and would occasionally be injured. The same happens later in the game; if she did not scale in power just as all other companions do, she would have been an unstoppable powerhouse stealing all my kills at low level and would not die to one hit from anything in the level 30-50 range given the extra damage enemies do as you level up.
Since she can't have gear, she must have some innate resistances and scaling HP to prevent demise every time I bump into a raider with a good weapon. She's also completely unaffected by Radiation as she should be, and gradually regenerates health after a battle without the need to give her a Stimpak. The only reason to do this is if you need her back in the fight.
Lone Wanderer and Carry Weight of Dogmeat
Although this is reported to be a glitch, currently Dogmeat does not break the Lone Wanderer Perk's bonuses, meaning you can still use Dogmeat while gaining a whopping +30% damage resistance, +100 Carrying Capacity, and increased damage with the last rank. Dogmeat itself can also carry exactly 150 pounds of weight for you, so you don't have to leave as much scrap behind. So with Dogmeat and Lone Wanderer, you're getting 250 pounds of carry weight, while companions may have to carry more gear in order to stay viable in combat later in the game - meaning that even with their perks, you won't be able to carry as much loot.
Battling with Dogmeat as a Follower
Benefits of Using Dogmeat in Combat
Sure, other Companions can help you directly with firepower and you may even romance them, but Dogmeat is always on the prowl for loot you may have missed and can tackle enemies to bring them down, allowing you to score some easy aimed shots. With Perks in Attack Dog, Dogmeat can also give you an increased chance to hit in V.A.T.S. when she has bitten an enemy and tangled them up.
Dogmeat's weakness comes against robotic enemies (even those that look like humanoids) and large opponents, though she can grapple normal Supermutants. I've never seen her tackle one of the humanoid robots nor beasts, perhaps due to their big strength. Obviously, she can only distract big enemies like Yao Guai, Radscorpions, and Deathclaws though in fights with them she will attempt to dodge attacks and strafe the opponents to keep them tied up. One less enemy on you is a good thing, and she will fight to the death but cannot necessarily distract them long for you.
Dogmeat has three types of attacks - a main bite that just deals damage, a tackle, and the occasional persistent grip of a limb - she holds on until she's kicked off. She must have a cooldown on this second move, or else I'm pissed it's not used consistently. Dogmeat shines most when she takes a limb or brings an enemy completely to the ground, allowing you to easily pop them without V.A.T.S.
XP from Kills
In order to get XP from Dogmeat or any other Companion's kills, you need to have at least hit the enemy once. To get full XP, you must deal at least half the damage.
The Attack Dog Perk
Previously mentioned, this perk is recommended if you plan to use Dogmeat as your main follower in Fallout 4. The Perk doesn't take as much Charisma as Inspirational, so it's good for low Charisma builds. The first rank is the most important to take - any time Dogmeat has an enemy grabbed, you can get a chance to hit in V.A.T.S., Rank 2 will make Dogmeat's attacks more likely to cripple a limb, and Rank 3 allows bleed damage from her attacks - it happens frequently enough, and seems to cause a percentage bleed. So long as you do most of the damage, you'll still get full XP so it's a non-issue in that regard, it makes Dogmeat a better Companion.
While everyone should notice Go, Stay, and Follow when instructing Dogmeat, something not immediately noticeable is that if you select 'Talk' to Dogmeat, you can command the canine to play fetch and locate items, containers, or enemies for you in the nearby area. It's a really useful fetch trick!
Using her nose, she may take off in a direction and if so, you should follow because she's found something. It's very useful if you are a hoarder and think you may have missed something in the general area. When 'good' items, like magazines and Bobbleheads are around, there's a good chance she will alert you to them.
By the way, you press the Pip-boy key to stop commanding Dogmeat.
Dogmeat will not be a problem when you're sneaky, though most Companions will hunker down and lighten their steps when you do - she seems to rarely trigger enemies to attack, though at times you may want to manage her by telling her to stay, when entering a particularly sticky situation. She's very obedient though, so please do remember to tell her to follow you again afterward.
Finding Dog Armor
To find Dogmeat's Armor, which is cosmetic (and cannot be upgraded), head to Rocky Narrows Park, west-southwest of Corvega Assembly Plant and 5 squares south of Museum of Freedom (for those who haven't been to Corvega). Do note this area is notorious for Yao Guai (freaking mutant bears). Here it is on the map:
From there, you can roam to the area I've indicated below: My character is pointing directly toward the cave you need to find, which is guarded by a few mongrel dogs.
You can see this tiny outcropping which someone used for shelter and likely had a bad time in doing so. There you will find a dog helmet, dog armor, and chain dog collar. None of these will raise Dogmeat's stats, but they do make her look a little tougher. If you prefer to put a handkerchief and goggles on her, go for it - it's all cosmetic.
More Fallout 4 Guides
Share Tips and Strategies Below
- Raider Outposts in Nuka World
- Nuka World - Play as a Raider in this DLC
- Far Harbor - Learn about the DLC, its secrets, and read walkthroughs
- Automatron - Guides to building bots and quest walkthroughs
- Settlements - An in-depth guide to Settlements and managing them
- Melee Build - the best perks for a melee character
- Sneaking - Learn to be stealthy
- Critical Hits - Shots to Crit and Crit damage mechanics
- Tips for Making a Build - General advice for creating your own build
- Action Points - AP and all the things that affect it
- VATS - all about the V.A.T.S. and AP usage on weapons
- Gameplay Tips - pointers that will help new players
- Making a Sniper Rifle Weapon mod examples. Heavy hitter and fast-firing Comparison - two guns from the same base.