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Harry Potter: Hagrid's Pets And Creature Friends Ranked By Likability

Rubeus Hagrid –- the larger-than-life groundskeeper and professor at Hogwarts -– has remained a fan favorite character throughout the series. From the moment he first met Harry Potter, Hagrid has always shown kindness to our hero and his friends. This naturally caring nature also extended to any and all creatures that crossed his path, from a baby dragon to an imposing three-headed dog.

Throughout the "Harry Potter" films, books, and expanded universe, we have been introduced to a wide variety of weird and wonderful creatures and critters, most of which have at some point been cared for, wrangled by, or otherwise interacted with the lovable Hagrid.

You may already have your favorites, but what is clear is that Hagrid's pets and creature friends come in all shapes and sizes, and some of them are likable and others — well, not so much. We've taken a look back at all of them, ranking them from the least to the most likable, to decide once and for all.

8. Aragog

Aragog already has a bit of a losing battle on his (eight) hands, particularly from those who have arachnophobia, which memorably includes Ron Weasley. We're introduced to Aragog in "The Chamber of Secrets," as he holds hidden knowledge that will prove Hagrid's innocence after he is wrongfully accused of the attacks on the students when the chamber is re-opened.

While Aragog closely resembles a spider, he is in fact an "Acromantula," which, according to the book "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them," is "a giant magical species of spider native to the rainforests of Southeast Asia" who rather chillingly have "a taste for human flesh." Based on this, the fact Hagrid decides to keep Aragog as a pet seems ludicrous, but part of what makes Hagrid so lovable is the fact he sees the good in any creature –- including the ones who would quite happily make you their dinner.

Aragog does prove himself to be useful to Harry and Ron when they take Hagrid's advice to "follow the spiders," providing the critical information that Harry needs to uncover the truth and find the real monster responsible for the attacks, the basilisk. However, he also sets his children upon our intrepid heroes, who make a very narrow escape, so it is hard to find something likable about him.

7. Fluffy

The name might sound cute and cuddly, but this unusual creature belonging to Hagrid is anything but. In "The Sorcerer's Stone," Harry learns that the mysterious stone is being guarded in the castle itself. He also learns that along with the spells and enchantments put in place to protect the item, there is also a monstrous three-headed dog guarding the entrance to the stone's hiding place.

Hagrid famously isn't very good at keeping secrets, particularly from the precocious trio led by Potter. In addition to letting slip the fact Fluffy is guarding something, he also manages to divulge the secret to getting past the monster, cheerfully explaining, "just play him a bit of music and he falls straight asleep!"

Armed with the knowledge they need to try and prevent the stone from falling into the wrong hands, Harry, Ron, and Hermione soon discover the more terrifying side of Fluffy after he wakes up from his lullaby-induced slumber. When he is sleeping, we can see what Hagrid means as Fluffy is quite cute in his own way -– after all, what could be better than one dog if not three dogs? However, when the dog awakens and tries to attack them with its many sets of teeth, it's a little harder to see his sweeter side.

6. Thestrals

Unlike some of the more ferocious creatures we meet in the wizarding world, the thestrals are very peaceful in comparison. While this does make them distinctly more likable, there is a darker side to them that puts them just a little below some of the other creatures Hagrid cares for.

Thestrals closely resemble a horse in many ways. However, their wings and skeletal appearance set them apart, as well as the circumstances that determine whether you could see them or not. In the film series, we first meet the thestrals in "The Order of the Phoenix," and Harry is confused when he can see them but Ron can't. Later in the film, Luna Lovegood explains to Harry that the thestrals can only be observed by those who have seen death.

This idea that a creature exists physically only to those who have seen someone die has a surprising amount of depth to it. In some ways, it suggests that someone who has experienced this kind of trauma sees the world differently from others and is therefore altered by the experience.

As Luna explains, "they're quite gentle, really." Despite their appearance and what they symbolize, the thestrals prove themselves to be allies in the Battle of Hogwarts against Lord Voldemort's armies. The fact that these creatures are so misunderstood is one of the reasons why they end up being so likable, and it is proof that you can't always judge someone or something by what they look like.

5. Centaurs

Despite the fact these creatures live independently, they still deserve their place here as Hagrid is one of the few people at Hogwarts who maintains a relationship between the humans and the inhabitants of the forest. This includes the reclusive centaurs. We don't see the centaurs much in the films, but from their brief appearances, it is clear that they have a great deal of respect for Hagrid, and he is one of the few that they trust.

The part-human and part-horse creatures are first seen in "The Sorcerer's Stone" when Firenze saves Harry from a creature later revealed to be Lord Voldemort. The book elaborates on the significance of this moment, as centaurs are generally not supposed to interfere with events that have a seemingly determined outcome. However, in this instance, they did decide to step in. It is perhaps partially due to their relationship with Hagrid that the centaurs occasionally intervene in crucial moments, which is something our heroes should be thankful for.

Like the thestrals, the herd of centaurs also fight in the Battle of Hogwarts against Voldemort's army of Death Eaters, stepping out of the Forbidden Forest for the greater good of wizarding kind in this crucial moment. Perhaps the most memorable moment from the centaurs, however, is when they carry the evil Dolores Umbridge off into the forest, kicking and screaming. Arguably this could be the thing that makes them some of the most likable creatures in all the wizarding world.

4. Grawp

While "The Chamber of Secrets" gives us a little of Hagrid's backstory -– specifically his time at Hogwarts and how he was expelled -– it isn't until "The Order of the Phoenix" that we get to meet one of Hagrid's relatives. Tasked by Dumbledore to gather some allies for the Order's fight against Voldemort's Death Eaters, Hagrid travels to find the Giants, and in the process manages to find his half-brother, Grawp.

Towering over Hagrid at around 16 feet tall, Grawp makes an instant impression on Harry, Ron, and Hermione when they are introduced to him, seemingly unaware of his size or strength. In a wise deviation from the books, where Grawp has a propensity for violence, the films depict a much sweeter Grawp with a childlike innocence that is a stark contrast to his imposing size. After their initial shock, the trio soon comes around to Grawp, agreeing to look after him should Hagrid be called away.

Grawp doesn't feature in the films as heavily as he does in the books, making just one appearance in "The Order of the Phoenix," however, he certainly makes a big impression in a short space of time. He shares an adorable bond with Hermione, who, after her initial chastisement of him, becomes one of the few people who cares for Grawp in the same way Hagrid does.

3. Norbert

In "The Goblet of Fire," dragons have a much bigger part to play, forming one of the intrinsic parts of a particularly difficult challenge in the Triwizard Tournament. However, way back in "The Sorcerer's Stone," we get to see a very different side to these mythical creatures when we're introduced to the adorable Norbert.

After discovering the secrets of the titular stone, Harry, Ron, and Hermione rush over to Hagrid's hut, where they find the groundskeeper a little preoccupied with something on his stove. Hagrid isn't making dinner for himself but has acquired a dragon egg that he is warming up so it'll hatch. Even in the wizarding world, dragons are hard to come by, and we soon learn that Hagrid won the egg from a stranger in the pub, who is later discovered to be Professor Quirrell in disguise.

If you've ever wondered if a baby dragon is cute, the answer is, based on Norbert, at least, absolutely they are. The thing that makes us fall in love with Norbert is seeing Hagrid's reaction to him, and the gentle giant is completely besotted with him from the moment he hatches –- even when he tries to set his beard on fire. Dragons might be cute pets in the beginning, but they soon grow. When Norbert starts to become too unwieldy for Hagrid to care for, he is sent off to Romania to be with his own kind and presumably scorch things to his heart's content.

2. Fang

The ironic names given to his pets are perhaps one of the most subtly hilarious things about Hagrid. In stark contrast to Fluffy, the monstrous three-headed dog, Hagrid's very placid pet pooch is given a much more ferocious sounding name — Fang.

In reality, Fang is as far from ferocious as you can get. Instead, he is a squishy, slobbery, and lovable hound who is the loyal and constant companion to Hagrid, even as his other pets and creatures come and go. Fang's breed in the book is a boarhound. However, in the films, he is a Neapolitan Mastiff, and while his size might make him look imposing, he is, according to Hagrid at least, "a bloody coward."

Despite his cowardice, Fang makes several trips into the Forbidden Forest with the gang. His first trip is with Draco and Harry when they're looking for the slain unicorns in "The Sorcerer's Stone," and later he accompanies Harry and Ron when they head off in search of the spider Aragog in "The Chamber of Secrets." Loyal not just to Hagrid but to our central trio as well, and as the pet closest to one we might actually be able to have ourselves, it is very easy to love Fang.

1. Buckbeak

In "The Prisoner of Azkaban," Hagrid now teaches the Care of Magical Creatures lessons to the students, and the first assignment of the semester is to introduce them to Buckbeak the hippogriff. Despite Hagrid very clearly informing them about the etiquette of meeting a hippogriff, Draco Malfoy decides the rules don't apply to him, and Buckbeak lashes out at him.

Things go from bad to worse for Buckbeak after this, as he is sentenced to death after the Malfoys kick up a fuss. In a bold move for the series, Buckbeak's execution seems to go ahead, albeit happening off-screen, and it's a heartbreaking moment. Fortunately, the story has a happy ending when the notion of time travel is introduced, which enables Harry, Ron, and Hermione to turn back time to save the Sirius Black and Buckbeak.

Whether it is the fact he takes a shot at Draco or the epic flying sequence, it isn't hard to fall in love with Buckbeak, and he is undoubtedly the most likable of Hagrid's creature friends and pets. The fact that Harry and Hermione decide to risk it all to save him speaks volumes, demonstrating his importance within the story and to us as the audience. "The Prisoner of Azkaban" is all about justice and you can't help but feel elated when Buckbeak is set free.