In Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (or Sorcerer's Stone) a three-headed dog named Fluffy guards the trapdoor. The hell-hound is very violent and anti-human, as mentioned in the book and shown in the movie. And the only way to (temporarily) tame it is to play music for it. Besides that, there is no way people can protect their legs - or any other part of their body for that matter - from being ripped in half.

But if the Cerberus is so dangerous, how is it fed, and by whom? Somebody must give it food at least once a day, to keep it alive. Or might the food be transported to Fluffy by magic?

  • 8
    There's nothing in the books that I recall, but the obvious answers are Hagrid, or house-elves. You could ask the same question about Quirrell's troll, btw.
    – Radhil
    May 18, 2017 at 13:40
  • I was temptet to cry "duplicate"... But my memory was wrong, this question is only related...
    – Tode
    May 18, 2017 at 14:02
  • Isn't it first years who don't listen and go wandering where they shouldn't? May 18, 2017 at 16:00
  • I mean, it's Hagrid's dog, so using logic . . . May 18, 2017 at 17:10
  • See also scifi.stackexchange.com/q/16804/4918 "How did the basilisk get enough food?"
    – b_jonas
    May 18, 2017 at 19:54

3 Answers 3


That would be Hagrid.

And it looks like Fluffy is Hagrid's property temporarily on loan to Dumbledore:

"How do you know about Fluffy?" [Hagrid] said.


"Yeah -- he's mine -- bought him off a Greek chappie I met in the pub las' year -- I lent him to Dumbledore ~Sorcerer's Stone

Fluffy might be a giant dog but Hagrid is an animal-loving giant himself uniquely skilled to take care of them.

Hermione gives some insight into how tough giants are in Order of the Phoenix after a number of skilled wizards were unable to take Hagrid down:

“Hagrid did well, didn’t he?” said Ron, who looked more alarmed than impressed. “How come all the spells bounced off him?”

“It’ll be his giant blood,” said Hermione shakily. “It’s very hard to Stun a giant, they’re like trolls, really tough... ~Order Of The Phoenix

Hagrid has also successfully taken care of an acromantula (giant spider), some giant Hippogriffs, some giant horses, and some giant fire breathing shrimp, so a giant three-headed dog seems right in his strikezone.

  • 1
    When did Hagrid take care of a giant dragon? I only recall him having a baby one, that Harry and Hermione were able to carry by themselves to the top of the Astronomy Tower. May 18, 2017 at 14:55
  • @AnthonyGrist Noted. I've updated my answer.
    – LCIII
    May 19, 2017 at 1:50

Hagrid probably brings him food.

Hagrid is most likely, as Fluffy's caretaker and the one who knows best how to get past him, the one to bring Fluffy his food. He often feeds the other dangerous creatures in his care himself, even the legal ones that aren't a secret, so it's logical he'd be in charge of feeding Fluffy as well.

“Well, I don’ s’pose it could hurt ter tell yeh that … let’s see … he borrowed Fluffy from me … then some o’ the teachers did enchantments … Professor Sprout – Professor Flitwick – Professor McGonagall –’ he ticked them off on his fingers, ‘Professor Quirrell – an’ Dumbledore himself did somethin’, o’ course. Hang on, I’ve forgotten someone. Oh yeah, Professor Snape.”
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Chapter 14 (Norbert the Norwegian Ridgeback)

However, it is possible that the house-elves could prepare food for Fluffy and have it sent up to his room using the same food-teleportation magic they use to fill the tables at the Great Hall.

However it's done, getting Fluffy food wouldn't be that hard.

If Hagrid's the one bringing him food, it'd be easy for him - he knows how to lull Fluffy with music, so if he needs to, he can just play him some music or sing him a song to get him calm while Hagrid brings in his food. Even if he tries to put the food in at first without playing music for Fluffy, he knows what to do if Fluffy gets too hard for him to handle.

“You’re the only one who knows how to get past Fluffy, aren’t you, Hagrid?’ said Harry anxiously. ‘And you wouldn’t tell anyone, would you? Not even one of the teachers?’

‘Not a soul knows except me an’ Dumbledore,’ said Hagrid proudly.”
- Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Chapter 14 (Norbert the Norwegian Ridgeback)

If, however, the house-elves are the ones preparing food for him, they wouldn't know that, but it wouldn't matter. They could send him his food exactly the same way that they send the food to the Hogwarts tables - by magic, without their physical presence upstairs. Hermione doesn't even know about them until her fourth year, so they don't necessarily need to go set anything up so they can send up food.

  • I thought the Great Hall had some special link to the house tables in the kitchen. Is there any indication that it works with other rooms in the castle too?
    – ibid
    Oct 30, 2017 at 18:51
  • It does - but it's not clear how the link is set up. It's possible they could do the same thing for other rooms too.
    – Obsidia
    Oct 30, 2017 at 19:06
  • 1
    @Bellatrix McGonagall magicks a plate of sandwiches to her office in CoS (after Harry and Ron arrive by car), but they don't come flying in through the door like things do when you Accio them, and they presumably came from the kitchen, not the Great Hall. Oct 30, 2017 at 20:09
  • @MissMonicaE Thanks a lot! :)
    – Obsidia
    Oct 30, 2017 at 20:58

Hagrid gives Fluffy food. Not only that, we know what food he's given - dog biscuits.

Besides for this quote that shows Hagrid owned Fluffy (also beought in LCIII's answer):

"How do you know about Fluffy?" [Hagrid] said. "Fluffy?" "Yeah -- he's mine -- bought him off a Greek chappie I met in the pub las' year -- I lent him to Dumbledore.

We know exactly what Hagrid fed him:

"Got it here somewhere," said Hagrid, and he started emptying his pockets onto the counter, scattering a handful of moldy dog biscuits over the goblin's book of numbers.

  • 7
    Or they could have been for Fang.
    – ibid
    Oct 30, 2017 at 14:05
  • 2
    I second the thought that the dog biscuits could have been for Fang - Fluffy wasn't the only canine Hagrid had.
    – Obsidia
    Oct 30, 2017 at 14:19
  • Yeah, I know, Still.
    – TheAsh
    Oct 30, 2017 at 14:19
  • He probably gave them the same food.
    – TheAsh
    Oct 30, 2017 at 14:20
  • 3
    If Hagrid was giving the same food to a small one-headed dog and a giant three-headed dog then he would almost certainly be starving Fluffy and I'd be calling the RSPCA. Oct 30, 2017 at 17:22

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