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I had asked the following question How does Mrs. Norris communicate with Mr. Filch? and then wondered further. In the third year (Prisoner of Azkabhan), Sirius communicates a lot with Crookshanks, even asks her to bring him the note of Gryffindor passwords, explains to her how to press the knot at the Whomping Willow tree, and even asks her to keep a lookout for Scabbers/Pettigrew.

Is this a magical ability of animagi? Or is Crookshanks a magical cat?

Thanks.

  • 1
    The linked question doesn't really answer this one. It covers the last part of Or is Crookshanks a magical cat? - no he's a Kneazle, but how does Sirius talk to him? Crookshanks never talks to any other people, so it must be related to Sirius being an animagi right? (full disclosure: I haven't read the Fantastic Beasts book) – Windle May 18 '12 at 14:26
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It appears that Animagi in general have closer affinity with animals. HP Lexicon picked up on this when discussing this same question:

Another factor presented later in the series are Voldemort's remarks to the Death Eaters on the subject of Wormtail in Goblet of Fire Ch 33, regarding his "curious affinity with rats". Implicit in those remarks is the information that Pettigrew could communicate with rats to obtain information involving rather complex concepts. It seems a reasonable deduction that Pettigrew's rat Animagus status is a factor in his ability to communicate with real rats.

Therefore it seems plausible that animal communication on a level above what normal wizards are able to do is common in Animagi.

There's no canon explanation but it may be related to this revelation about the nature of Animagi thought processes:

"They could tell that my feelings were less - less human, less complex when I was a dog...but they thought, of course, that I was losing my mind like everyone else in there..." (PoA, Ch 19, Sirius explaining how Dementors perceived him).

Add to that the fact of Crookshank being a half-Kneazle, who are known for at least SOME level of mind reading (they can tell good wizards from bad, and animagi from animals)

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