What affects an Animagus?

If a dog Animagus were to eat chocolate in his human form, then turn into his animal form, would he die?

This was the question posed to me by a young Potterhead in my neighborhood who had spotted me rereading Deathly Hallows. I was stumped. I thought about it later and I think I’ve found a good theory: The activities done in human form will not affect a transformed Animagus, and vice versa. It makes total sense, doesn’t it? Otherwise, every Animagi would have to avoid eating certain foods in their life. Except maybe housefly Animagi. (expanding on the food thing below)

My completed theory is that certain things done in human form will not affect their transformation, and vice versa.

I have found that my theory will ‘fix’ the problem with diet choices. However, I am not sure about physical activity. Physical appearance of the Animagus will be affected by the person’s human form. I will expand on these three things below.

1. Diet choices. For example, sugar gliders cannot eat citruses, salty things, and chocolate (among other things). If activities in human form were to affect a transformed Animagus, this would mean that the witch or wizard would have to avoid eating a lot of things, and basically live on the diet choices of a sugar glider. It’s not going to be too healthy a lifestyle if our sugar glider Animagus is stuck eating just fruits and the occasional nut or vegetable. Besides, we all know that the Marauders achieved Animagus transformation in their fifth year at Hogwarts. If they had had to stick to the dietary requirements their other forms ‘set’ for them, surely a teacher or classmate would have noticed something ‘off’ with their eating habits. Furthermore, I am assuming that Sirius (or someone else) would have eaten chocolate to combat the effects of the Dementors. If this is true, then he would have been poisoned once he transformed into Padfoot. However he wasn’t. This led me to my deduction that anything eaten that could be harmful to someone in either one of their Animagus forms would not affect their other form.


I am also assuming that, however harmful the food eaten may have been, if someone had eaten a full meal it would still translate into general ‘fullness’ in either form the Animagus chose to take. Otherwise, it would be a bit troublesome, wouldn’t it? Having to eat two meals? And since I am assuming that Sirius did a lot in Padfoot form when he escaped from Azkaban, including eat (I am assuming he stole and ate food in Padfoot form), then the ‘fullness’ must have transferred or else when he reverted into Sirius form, he would have had to eat again.

2. Physical activity. If an Animagus were to stretch (or otherwise exercise) a lot in their human form, resulting in more flexibility (or other skills), would the new flexibility skill extend to their Animagus form? I honestly do not know. One would think that the weight of an Animagus would be equal: For example, if someone who weighed relatively little for their age were to transform, their Animagus form would also weigh relatively little for their age. I don’t know if that extends to muscles, flexibility, and/or strength.

However, we know that Minerva McGonagall is described as a ‘sprightly seventy-year-old’, and that she held her own in the minor tussle during Harry’s Astronomy OWL (OoTP, 5th year). We also know that she regularly patrolled Hogwarts, kicked arse in the Battle of Hogwarts and the Battle of the Astronomy Tower, that she was a fairly active Order member, and that she would have happily joined in Peeves’ evicting Umbridge had Peeves not appropriated her walking stick. These canon facts all point to a pretty active lifestyle, so we know that she was very healthy. We also know that she spent an entire day sitting by Number 4 Privet Drive, spying on observing the Dursleys in their natural habitat in her Animagus form. She also jumped down from a wall mid-transformation, so she was confident enough in her health that she knew she wouldn’t injure herself. I’m pretty sure that transforming from a cat into a human in midair would take some practice. This proves that some physical ability will transfer to one’s Animagus form.

But I don’t know if muscles will transfer. Let’s say a bodybuilder became an Animagus. Would his other form have large muscles, or would it just be an average animal? If he were to train in his Animagus form, would the training affect his human form? What do you guys think? River, I would like to know your opinion on this. For now, let’s continue on to number 3.

3. Physical appearance. We also know that McGonagall’s physical appearance transferred to her face in Animagus form, appearing in markings around her eyes said to resemble the square spectacles that she wore. Rita Skeeter wore green quite a lot in GoF, and the book described her Animagus form (Skeeter transforms into a beetle) as green-colored. The coloring of her Animagus form could also refer to her crocodile-skin handbag, or the ‘acid-green’ Quick Quotes Quill she would often carry with her. Furthermore, her beetle form was described as having curled antennae which resembled the curls of her hair, and she had markings around her antennae that looked like her jeweled glasses. So, we know that parts of one’s physical appearance can affect their Animagus appearance.

However, I want to know just how far the likeness will go. If a Metamorphmagus were to transform into an Animagus, would their Metamorphmagus skill still work? Would their Animagus form be able to change their appearance, shape, color, etc. at will? Or would the morphing not work at all?

If someone had dyed their hair blue, would the fur/scales/hair/skin of their Animagus form be blue as well? What if they had a tattoo? Would that tattoo appear on their Animagus form? If they were nearsighted, would their form be nearsighted as well? If they had a piercing, would their form have a piercing too?

About Danny

I blog about whatever's on my mind. Usually that's stuff like Harry Potter metaposts, writing, and LGBTQ+ topics.
This entry was posted in Awesomeness, Books, Fandom-related, fangirl stuff, Pottermore, Potterstuff, The sugar glider, Theories. Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to What affects an Animagus?

  1. emkho says:

    LOKI!!!!!!!!!AND CHICKEN BAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. rastelly says:

    I read a science fiction series called animorphs when I was young.
    A group of kids used an alien tech to transform into animals and spy
    on invading aliens –

    In the books people who turned into smaller animals left most of their body mass in a universe called zero space – people who turned into larger animals
    pulled matter out of zero space. Using Animorphs logic the poison could stay
    in their shed matter and not have any contact with the animal they became.
    If the animal was larger it’s possible few would have enough poison from the
    small human body to affect say – an elephant or whale.

    Harry potter claims an Animal transformation could go wrong – so I assume
    that every shape shifter might be operating on slightly different logic depending on their skill level

    Also weather someone would have to eat again as an animal depends on
    how long they remained in animal form I would think – unless the poison
    would kill them instantly it might just make them mildly uncomfortable till
    they turned human again before the poison killed them – but human stomachs are much bigger and there is also enough iron in the human
    body to make a three inch nail – so outside of iron poisoning and exploding
    stomachs I guess it’s safe to say the wizard isn’t effected.

    The Animorphs used dna to copy whatever animal they touched.
    They could also do this with humans in order to look like other people.

    I feel a wizard doesn’t copy a real animal so much as they change their
    shape and size to perfectly mimic a real animal – this would explain things
    like glasses carrying over to a cat, as for a tattoo most animals have fur
    so you probably wouldn’t see it unless of course the all mighty plot demanded it. 😉

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