Returning players may quickly realize there is no dog companion when they just started the game. Fear not, they are not gone… just somewhere waiting for you. Although getting a pet is not hard, it is actually miss-able for players who do not pay too much attention to the game.
You have to first have Van make his appearance in game before having the pet feature unlocked for you. To unlock Van, you have to offer gifts to the Goddess for 30 days by throwing offerings into the river. A good indication of you reaching 30 would be the Goddess returning you a White Grass. After that, Van will make his visit to your farm on a Sunny Wednesday (You can use Save & Load trick for this).
Since Van will only be selling pets on 15th of every season, the earliest time you can get your first pet is actually first year’s Summer 15. Most importantly, he will only open his shop when there is no rain/snow. In another words, if you missed him, you will need to wait for him again next season.
It is highly recommended to utilize the Save & Load trick to assure a sunny day on every 15th. Basically, save before you sleep on 13th, and check the weather forecast right after you wake up. If it indicates rain on the next day, reload your game again.
You can find his pet shop at the bottom left of town square. He will be selling pets starting from 12:30 PM ~ 17:50 PM. In addition, the pets he sold differs every season.
Spring Pets – Cats
Summer Pets – Penguin
Van will be selling blue penguin and black penguin.
Autumn Pets – Dogs
The default dog will be 10,000G, while the other two are 20,000G.
Winter Pets – Capybara
There will be a normal capybara, and an albino (white) capybara.
All Season – Pet Treat
Pet treat can be found at the bottom of the list when Van is selling pets. Players may purchase it to feed their pets to increase their affection faster. It is also possible to feed it to the pony you are taking care of during first year.
Please be aware that after you bought your first pet, you can only get more after your last pet reach about 8 hearts. It will generally take 2 seasons for that, so you may want to choose your pet wisely. Considering pets are mostly for aesthetic purpose, it is not necessary for players to choose dog as their first pet. After all, you don’t need dogs to guard your barn animals or herd them anymore. The one use of pets though, is to participate the pet festival held on Summer 1.
More about Van
After Van make his appearance, you can find him setting up his another shop on the second floor of the inn every Wednesday except holiday. He is located at the furthest corner in the corridor. You can buy various ores from him, including a music player.
If you have a lot of money to splurge, you can also give him the “Van’s favorite item” you receiving from the mailbox. He will end up offering you a random item to buy. Do take note that such event will only trigger if you have 1,000,000G, because you probably could not afford the item otherwise.