In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Dumbledore asked Professor McGonagall to bring Hagrid's dog Fang to his office before questioning Crouch Jr. Why did he do this?

"Minerva, kindly go down to Hagrid's house, where you will find a large black dog sitting in the pumpkin patch. Take the dog up to my office, tell him I will be with him shortly, then come back here."

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter 35 "Veritaserum"

  • 38
    The quote didn't mention the dog in question was Fang - and it wasn't.
    – Rad80
    Commented Nov 17, 2021 at 16:16
  • In any Question like that, could you first explain your own ideas? "Why did…?" is one thing. Wouldn't "I think the reason X did Y was…" and I'm looking for either justification or a better explanation…" would be more interesting? Commented Nov 19, 2021 at 20:54

1 Answer 1


The black dog was Sirius in his animagus form. The following chapter (GoF chapter 36) hopefully makes this clearer:

‘I want you to come up to my office first, Harry,’ he said quietly , as they headed up the passageway. ‘Sirius is waiting for us there.’

  • 26
    To supplement this answer, McGonagall certainly knew who Fang was, and Dumbledore would have referred to the dog by name. It's 99% certain that she also knew that the large black dog was Sirius in Animagus form, but Dumbledore said it this way to provide her with plausible deniability. (Not that McGonagall would likely need it, and her sense of honor would drive her to eschew it in most cases, but Dumbledore looks out after his own.)
    – EvilSnack
    Commented Nov 17, 2021 at 16:17
  • 21
    The other clue was in the "tell him I will be with him shortly" line. Why would you bother telling that to a dog? Unless you knew it wasn't really a dog... Commented Nov 17, 2021 at 16:22
  • 14
    @DarrelHoffman To be fair, I've found it perfectly normal for people to talk to dogs without any expectation that the dog will understand them.
    – Abless
    Commented Nov 17, 2021 at 21:55
  • 6
    @Abless: You would be surprised what dogs can understand.
    – Joshua
    Commented Nov 17, 2021 at 22:39
  • 17
    @DarrelHoffman even if it were an actual dog, Dumbledore is known to have said weirder stuff. Commented Nov 17, 2021 at 23:15

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.