Come Here Boy! 3 Ways to Call Your Dog Back

Introduction

Fallout 4 is an action role-playing game developed by Bethesda Game Studios and published by Bethesda Softworks in 2015. It takes place in post-apocalyptic Boston in the year 2287, 210 years after a nuclear war devastated the Earth. The player takes on the role of a character known as the “Sole Survivor” who emerges from an underground bunker known as Vault 111 in search of their son Shaun.

One of the most beloved features of Fallout 4 is the companion system, which allows the player to recruit non-player characters (NPCs) to accompany them on their travels through the Wasteland. One of these companions is a dog named Dogmeat, who can be found early in the game outside the Red Rocket truck stop. Dogmeat quickly became a fan favorite companion due to his adorable appearance and useful abilities like fetching items and attacking enemies. According to Wikipedia, Dogmeat was “introduced as an optional companion to the player which would assist them in battles.” 1

Why Dogmeat Can Wander Off

Dogmeat has an AI system in Fallout 4 that allows him to freely wander, explore, and scavenge when not given direct commands. This gives Dogmeat a sense of independence and realism, unlike other companion characters that rigidly follow the player. However, it can lead to frustration when Dogmeat suddenly vanishes after wandering off.

According to posts on Nexus Mods and Steam forums, Dogmeat’s tendency to explore is by design [1]. The developers intentionally gave him behaviors like sniffing out items, getting distracted by enemies, and generally not staying by the player’s side at all times. This makes Dogmeat feel more alive, but also means he can’t be relied on to stick close in dangerous combat situations.

dogmeat sniffing out items and exploring the environment

While many players appreciate Dogmeat’s lifelike behaviors, others find the AI system frustrating when he disappears right when you need him. There are techniques to mitigate the wandering and keep Dogmeat nearby, but his AI encourages exploring independently. Understanding this intention behind Dogmeat’s programming helps explain why he readily wanders off despite players’ best efforts.

Using the Follow Command

The simplest way to get Dogmeat to follow you again is to open the command wheel and select the “Follow” command. To open the command wheel, hold down the action button (default is E on PC or A on Xbox). Then select the “Follow” command and Dogmeat should return to your side.

This command tells Dogmeat to stop whatever he is doing and focus on staying near you. According to discussions on Reddit (https://www.reddit.com/r/fo4vr/comments/7mbo8c/cant_give_dogmeat_items/), the Follow command overrides other commands you’ve given Dogmeat like searching an area or staying put. So it’s a reliable way to call him back.

If Dogmeat is stuck or glitched somewhere far away, the Follow command may not work. But in most cases, it should make him come running back. Just open the command wheel and select Follow whenever you need your canine companion by your side again.

Finding Dogmeat’s Location

If Dogmeat has wandered off and you can’t find him, there are a few things you can try to locate your companion. The first thing to check is Dogmeat’s dog house in Sanctuary Hills, as he will often return there if dismissed or left behind for a long time (1). If he’s not in Sanctuary Hills, open your map and look for the dog icon that represents Dogmeat – this will show his current location if he’s nearby (2).

You can also try fast traveling to various locations on the map to see if Dogmeat appears with you. Listen for his barking, as he’s sometimes hidden from view behind objects or terrain. If you still can’t find him, wait or sleep for 24-48 hours – this will reset companions and often make Dogmeat respawn at your location or his dog house (1).

As a last resort, you can use the player.moveto console command to instantly teleport to Dogmeat’s RefID, which will take you right to his location (3). Just be cautious with console commands, as they can sometimes break quest scripts.

Fast Traveling to Dogmeat

One way to quickly reunite with Dogmeat if he wanders off is to use the fast travel feature on the map to instantly transport to his location. Even if you tell Dogmeat to stay put, he will often still follow you when you fast travel. According to a GameFAQs forum post, “I told Dogmeat to stay, yet he follows when I Fast Travel.”[1] This makes fast travel a convenient option for finding your canine companion if you become separated.

To fast travel to Dogmeat, open your Pip-Boy map and select the map tab. Find the dog paw icon showing Dogmeat’s current position. Hover over it to make sure it’s him. Then simply click on the icon to instantly travel to his location. This will transport your character to wherever Dogmeat is on the map at that moment. According to some players, this method works reliably for teleporting right to your loyal dog’s side. [2]

using the map to fast travel to dogmeat's location

So if Dogmeat wanders off while you’re exploring the vast Wasteland, don’t despair. Open your map, find his paw print icon, and click to fast travel directly to him. You’ll be reunited in no time.

Waiting for Dogmeat to Return

One simple option to reunite with Dogmeat is to simply wait for him to find his way back to you. Dogmeat is coded to be an essential character, so he can’t permanently die or disappear from the game. If you’ve commanded him to wait, or if he’s managed to wander off and get lost, he will eventually return to your side after some time passes.

The amount of time needed for Dogmeat to return varies, but many players report success waiting or sleeping for 1-2 in-game days. You can pass time quickly by finding a bed or chair and selecting the option to wait for 24 or 48 hours. After waking up, check your surroundings and see if Dogmeat has returned. If not, you may need to wait a bit longer.

Some tips for waiting for Dogmeat to return on his own:

  • Make sure you’re not inside an interior cell or building – wait out in the open wilderness.
  • Try waiting in a settlement location where Dogmeat is likely to path back to.
  • Don’t rush quests or go through multiple zone transitions – stay in one general area.
  • If you have supply lines, check your linked settlements after waiting.

While not the fastest method, waiting patiently is a simple, no-effort way for Dogmeat to find his way back. Just be ready to fend off attacks from enemies or wildlife while sitting idle.

Using Dog Whistles

One way to call Dogmeat back to you is by using a dog whistle item. Mods like the Companion Whistle mod add dog whistles into the game that you can use to summon Dogmeat when he wanders too far. When equipped and used, the dog whistle plays an audible sound that will call Dogmeat back to your side no matter where he is on the map.

blowing a dog whistle to call dogmeat back

The Companion Whistle mod adds a craftable Dog Whistle item that can be used unlimited times to call Dogmeat back. Other mods like Pet – Call – Feed Dogmeat add a whistle animation when used, allowing you to visibly blow a whistle to call Dogmeat. Using mods that add physical dog whistles or whistle animations can provide an immersive and lore-friendly way to reliably call Dogmeat back when you lose track of him.

Trying Console Commands

One method PC players can use to find Dogmeat is through console commands. By accessing the in-game console, you can directly move Dogmeat to your location. To open the console, press the ‘~’ key while playing the game. This will bring up a command line at the bottom of your screen.

To move Dogmeat to you, type in ‘moveto player’ without the quotes and hit enter. This will force Dogmeat to teleport to your location, reuniting you with your canine companion. You can also teleport to Dogmeat by using the command ‘player.moveto 0000d162’. Just replace the ID with Dogmeat’s actual NPC ID if needed.

Console commands are a quick and easy way to find Dogmeat again on PC if he happens to wander off or get stuck somewhere. Just be careful not to overuse them, as this can break quest scripts or the game overall. But for the occasional lost companion, console commands can be a useful tool.

Mods to Find Dogmeat

There are a few mods that can help you locate or move Dogmeat if he goes missing or gets stuck in Fallout 4:

The Marker Dogmeat mod adds map markers that show Dogmeat’s current location. This makes it easy to see where he is at any given time, and fast travel to him if needed.

Some other mods like Unlimited Companion Framework add console commands to teleport companions, including Dogmeat, to your location. This can quickly return Dogmeat to your side if he wanders off or gets lost.

console commands to teleport dogmeat to the player's location

There are also mods that generally improve Dogmeat’s AI behavior, like Immersive Dogmeat Idles, which can help reduce issues with him disappearing or getting stuck in the first place.

Installing one or more of these mods can provide handy tools for keeping track of Dogmeat and getting him back to your side when needed.

Conclusion

In summary, there are several ways to find and recall Dogmeat if he wanders off in Fallout 4. The Follow command will make Dogmeat return to you if he’s nearby. Fast traveling to Dogmeat’s location on the map can also reunite you quickly. Waiting for several hours can sometimes cause Dogmeat to find his way back to you. Dog whistles from the Workshop can call Dogmeat over long distances. Console commands like “moveto player” can also teleport Dogmeat to your location. And mods like “Dogmeat – A True Companion” can prevent him from wandering too far in the first place.

With some patience and clever use of game mechanics, you should be able to keep Dogmeat by your side through the Wasteland. He’s a loyal companion who just needs a little extra guidance. Remember these tips next time Dogmeat goes wandering, and he’ll be back at your side in no time. For more help finding companions, check out Reddit discussions like this thread on utilizing Dogmeat with other followers.

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