Carl's Sims 3 Guide - Skills, Traits, Careers, Rewards, and Lifetime Wishes for Ambitions and World Adventures

The Sims 3 Pets: Traits Guide

List of Horse, Dog, Cat, and Unicorn Traits with Training Tips

The Sims 3 Pets Guide
Pet LTRsPet TraitsUnicornsCatsDogsHorses
Minor PetsRacingHorsemanArc BuilderThe JockeyZoologist
The Sims 3 Pets: Traits List and Training Guide

This guide for The Sims 3 Pets focuses on Traits. There are four new Traits for Sims, 22 Traits for Dogs and Cats, and 19 Traits for Horses and Unicorns. I will describe each Trait and how it will impact your Pets and Sim. You will also find information in our Trait list indicating what interactions will encourage or discourage a particular trait.

Training Animals
Whenever a pet performs certain interactions, a trait icon will briefly appear over its head. This will show you either a positive or negative reaction, meaning the trait is either developing or going away. When your Sim scolds or praises the animal, it can get another boost encouraging or discouraging that trait development.

In the Traits list, if you see that a certain animal activity encourages a trait, then your Sim can generally use the praise interaction to help that trait develop faster. Scold should be used for correcting negative behavior, like piggy, destructive, or skittish actions. You wouldn't normally scold a Horse for being fast, or a cat for using its scratching post.

Using Scold or Praise is always more powerful than the interactions that develop traits, in order to allow them to be reversed or picked up without undue effort. Even I am wrong about that and it breaks even, you can keep the Pet from eventually developing that trait by staying on top of it. Scolded pets may be less likely to do those interactions if you can catch them before the trait develops. As in real life, Pets that have a lot of time spent with them will be more intelligent and better trained. That is, unless you spoil them!

On our Sims 3 Forum, I read that traits learned at birth or in Create-a-Pet can be trained out. However, it was also indicated that people have had trouble getting rid of traits that have been learned through gameplay. I did some testing and made my horse noisy, then had him nicker and get scolded about twenty times. He never dropped the noisy trait, so this information seems to be accurate.

How quickly your Pet will learn a trait depends on the trait. Some are more desirable and seem to take a bit longer to get. A dog that eats a few times when he's full will quickly develop the piggy trait, whether you scold him or not. Overall, if you follow the section in the list indicating how to get each trait, you will eventually have it. Of course, there are opposites here (an animal wouldn't be noisy and quiet at the same time) so take that into consideration.

Pets can have more traits than Sims. I have heard of up to nine traits. I suspect ten is the cap. If you hit 11, let me know!

I initially reported that Aggressive, Obedient, and Friendly couldn't be learned. I was wrong, as others are able to get the traits. However, I was impacted by a bug. If you go a long time without developing one of these, you might have the same problem.

Whether bugged or by design, some traits in The Sims 3 Pets just cannot be learned through training due to lack of interactions of that kind. You can't teach a horse to be quiet or to have the intellect of a genius. You can't tell it to be lazy or dim-witted either.

Best Traits - Super Pets
Because there are traits that cannot be picked up through gameplay, most trait combos will leave you unable to pick up one of several traits. If you wanted to make an Uber pet, you can do so by selecting the following traits. Thanks to forum member Naanomi for sharing this:

Horse: Start with Brave, Friendly, Genius, Obedient and Quiet. You can then pick up Agile, Fast, Neat and Playful if desired.

Cat: Start with Friendly, Independent. or Shy. You can then grab Genius and Proud or Quiet. Through training, you can get Hunter, Hyper, Neat, Non-Destructive, and Playful.

Dog: Start with Genius. Take Aggressive or Friendly. You can then grab Independent or Shy. Quiet is another option if you want to swap it in for one of the others. By training, dogs can get Adventurous, Hyper, Likes Swimming, Loyal, Neat, Non-Destructive and Playful.

The Sims 3: Pets - New Sim Traits
Animal Lover TraitAnimal LoverThese will have better interactions with animals overall, but don't really specialize in anything. They'll gain relationship with all three pet types faster.
Cat Person TraitCat PersonGets a +10 3h moodlet for interacting with cats. They'll also build relationships faster and train them to hunt at a faster rate.
Dog Person TraitDog PersonGets a +10 3h moodlet for interacting with dogs. They'll also build relationships faster and train them to hunt at a faster rate.
Equestrian TraitEquestrianGets a +10 3h moodlet for interacting with horses. Will also learn the riding skill faster and befriend the animals more effectively. This includes wild horses.
The Sims 3: Pets - Training Cat and Dog Traits
TraitNameDescriptionHow to Train It:
Adventurous TraitAdventurousAdventurous pets are less likely to freak out and hide under something, and will overall be more curious. They can get a moodlet for hiding under the couch (cats only).Jump up on couches, beds, or counters (cats). You can scold this behavior if you don't want them to do those kinds of things.
Aggressive TraitAggressiveAggressive dogs and cats will be better at chasing off robbers and the mail man. Dogs with this trait will also be more likely to use mean interactions on other animals.The single best way to develop the Aggressive trait is to guard items. There's no need to harm the pet's relationships. You can als perform mean interactions, and chase the mailman (not play chase, mean chase!).
Clueless TraitCluelessClueless pets will sometimes forget what they are doing. Unknown
Destructive TraitDestructiveThese pets will go after furniture more often to satisfy their destructive or scratch needs. They will dig more holes and knock over your trash can more often.Scold destructive behavior to prevent this trait from coming out of your pet. Otherwise, train non-destructive to prevent this from happening again.
Friendly TraitFriendlyFriendly pets improve relations faster and are more likely to be nice to animals and Sims.The best way is to socialize with other animals. Otherwise, do friendly interactions..
Genius TraitGeniusGenius pets learn the hunting skill faster, and get more benefit out of praising and scolding interactions.Unknown
Hunter TraitHunterDogs or Cats with the Hunter trait will learn Hunting more quickly, and be more likely to hunt autonomously.Dogs can't seem to learn this trait (bug or good nose genes?), but a cat will pick it up simply by hunting.
Hydrophobic TraitHydrophobic(Dog Only) These dogs do not enjoy swimming, and will take a -20 mood hit for 3 hours after getting in the water.You can gradually train out this phobia by praising them when they swim for a while. Don't expect him to get back in for any length of time after the swim is over...
Hyper TraitHyperHyper pets will want to run around more, and that energy comes with a big perk. Sleep times are reduced, and pets' energy bars drop at a slightly reduced rate. This is a desirable trait!Praise pets for playing chase and they should develop this fairly quickly.
Independent TraitIndependentIndependent pets have more fun on their own, and also have a reduced need to socialize. They will socialize with other pets less often as a result.Unknown
Lazy TraitLazyLazy pets will get fatigued from hunting more quickly and will want to sit around more. Their energy motive will decay faster.Train hyper to get rid of this undesirable trait.
Likes Swimming TraitLikes Swimming (Dog Only) This trait is only for fun. Dogs that have it will seek pools more often.Praise the dog for swimming.
Loyal TraitLoyal (Dog Only) Loyal dogs like to pick one Sim and follow them around. They will gain skills more quickly, and build relationships with family members very fast. They're also more open to social interactions.Gain this by having your dog guard the house.
Neat TraitNeatNeat pets avoid getting dirty, and stay clean for a longer time. They also tend to use the bathroom outdoors.Praise your pet for going outside. This can replace piggy.
Noisy TraitNoisyNoisy pets will make more noise in general. They like to use noisy interactions like bark much more often.You seem to be stuck with this trait if it develops, so scold them for being noisy if you want to avoid it.
Non-Destructive TraitNon-DestructiveThese pets will find good ways to satisfy their need for destruction or scratch (chew toys, scratching post). They shouldn't knock over the trash can much, and your yard will often be free of holes from digging.Praise for and use interactions like chewing on toys and scratching at the post.
Piggy TraitPiggyThese pets get dirty faster after a bath (lose the clean moodlet). They'll also overeat and make more noise while eating.Eat too much, drink from the toilet, or beg for food! Scold them if they pee inside, as well. Praise outdoor bladder relief to develop Neat.
Playful TraitPlayfulPlayful pets gain and lose fun faster than others. They'll be more likely to be playful with other pets autonomously.Play with other pets and toys.
Proud TraitProudProud pets won't seek out interactions with kittens or puppies. They don't care to be dirty, either. This may have some effects on pet-to-pet interactions and Proud could have unique animations. I think this is mostly an entertainment trait.Unknown
Quiet TraitQuietQuiet pets will tend to do silent interactions autonomously. They make less noise overall.Scold for noisy interactions, but I'm not aware of a means of developing quiet.
Shy TraitShyShy cats and dogs will learn hunting faster while working with their favorite Sim. They will socialize less often, and prefer to do so with their favorite Sim.Unknown
Skittish TraitSkittishSkittish pets will run away from loud noises (burglar alarms, fireworks), sprinklers, etc.Train this trait out by pursuing adventurous.
The Sims 3: Pets - Training Horse/Unicorn Traits
TraitNameDescriptionHow to Train It:
Aggressive TraitAggressiveThese pets are more likely to be mean to other animals, and will even occasionally chase the mailman. On the upside, aggressive pets are much better at catching burglars in the act.Failing to nuzzle a Sim (rejected) and performing mean interactions can develop this gradually.
Agile TraitAgileThese horses perform better in jumping and cross-country competitions, and learn the jumping skill quickly. Because they love jumping courses, they will require exercise a little more frequently.Simply practice jumping!
Brave TraitBraveBrave horses won't freak out as much over loud noises like alarms and fireworks. They will get along better with other Brave horses, but it's not a very useful trait.Unknown
Clueless TraitCluelessLike absent-minded Sims, these Pets will sometimes forget what to do. The description claims they get along better with absent-minded Sims and clueless animals, but I see no evidence of a gameplay impact.Unknown how to affect it.
Fast TraitFastFast horses run faster and perform better in Equestrian Center races. They need a bit more exercise to be satisfied.Racing Training Posts. A little exploit you can do is to repeatedly start the training then stop, as the trait boost is rewarded at the end of a training session.
Friendly TraitFriendlyFriendly horses gain relationships with Sims and other animals faster than usual. They tend to want to hang out around Sims and animals they like.Praising friendly interactions or simply talking with other animals.
Genius TraitGeniusThese super-sharp horses will learn skills faster and benefit more from scolding and praising.Unknown, probably a trait that is available upon creation only.
Hates Jumping TraitHates JumpingThis makes horses more likely to refuse jumps. Naturally, they will do worse at jumping competitions because of this. They get a reduction in the rate exercise declines. Horses that hate to jump may also knock over jumping obstacles autonomously.Train the Agile Trait to replace this one.
Lazy TraitLazyThe horse will be slower and more likely to lose racing competitions. They'll also learn this skill at a stunted rate. For this huge penalty, there is a slightly reduced need for exercise.Replace this with the Fast trait by training appropriately.
Neat TraitNeatThis will keep horses from doing things that could get them dirty, but there aren't really interactions like this. It doesn't boost the duration of hygenic hooves or brushing. It seems largely pointless for a horse, who is going to pee outside anyway!Praise for cleaning hooves (accepted).
Nervous TraitNervousThese horses are forgetful, and get extra freaked out by loud noises.Scold for freaking out to discourage this from developing.
Noisy TraitNoisyNoisy pets are generally more vocal. This is not really a negative trait.Once you have this trait, you are stuck with it. Prevent it by scolding loud behavior like nickering. Get it by nickering and tapping along to stereos.
Obedient TraitObedientThis makes a horse accept interactions from Sims earlier in a relationship, improving success rates for anyone who interacts with the animal.Praise for accepting interactions like sniffing hand, talk to, and brushing.
Ornery TraitOrneryThese horses are supposed to get along better with evil/mean Sims but it seems to have no/minimal gameplay impact. They are more likely to do mean things like throw off their rider and reject social interactions.You can scold or encourage this trait as it is developing. You'll know when it's time to talk to the horse when he throws your Sim on her backside.
Piggy TraitPiggyThese pets will get dirty more often, which doesn't much apply for a horse. They make more sounds and overeat, but there's not a lot negative about this trait.You should be able to train this trait out by praising neat interactions, like cleaning hooves. I'm not really aware of others like this for a horse. They can't be rewarded for peeing outdoors. It's expected of them.
Playful TraitPlayfulThese horses like to play, and will find the fun bar falls faster but replenishes fast as well.Have the animal play with other animals, or the horse ball.
Quiet TraitQuietThe opposite of Noisy. These pets won't make much noise or join in noisy activities.You can't make them quiet by discouraging noise, so they either have this or don't.
Shy TraitShyThese pets won't often socialze with others. They have a mind for their favorite Sim and will listen better to that individual.Unknown
Untrained TraitUntrainedLowers horse sell value. Untrained horses also require higher friendship levels before they will allow a Sim to saddle or mount them.Work this trait out by performing any kind of horse training, like taking rides, jumping or racing.

Comments (22)

cheddar98 says...
My pet has 12 traits: Independent, Non-Destructive, Neat, Hunter, Clueless, Aggressive, Adventurous, Hyper, Genius, Shy, Proud, and Playful.
10th July 2014 1:38am
cheddar98 says...
Now it also has the trait Quiet in addition to the 12 traits.
10th July 2014 1:51am
steve says...
I love rideing horses and love peting the horese by have a nice day.
20th December 2013 4:17pm
Juliana says...
Typo's.... ANd also for the Fast trait, you only need to make your horse the active sim, click on them, and select gallop around. :) Other than that, AWESOME job!!!
17th November 2012 5:14pm
Catrina says...
Thank you so much!! I am just getting pets and this helped me a lot to get a picture of the game!!
6th January 2013 5:37pm
Yleise says...
Has anyone found a way to unlearn 'clueless' yet? I found the perfect horse to breed for money but her foals are getting her clueless trait, not sure how to breed or train it out of them/her.
30th November 2013 5:31pm
Po the Pug says...
You can actually get dogs to teach themselves the hunter trait. Around level 6 or 7 in the hunting skill they will get the choice to "locate collectables..." With the option of gem, rock, or metal. After about 6 times doing that, they should get the hunter trait!
8th April 2013 10:53pm
Melanie says...
I had my dog learn the hunter trait on accident. I just kept having it locate different stuff and then go dig it up and it developed the trait.
6th January 2014 5:23pm
Jess says...
The horse trait 'piggy' can be trained by having the horse 'beg for carrots' and feeding it produce (not treats) encourages it too I think.
8th January 2014 10:04pm
thea says...
can my dog get agility
4th March 2014 11:22am
Jo says...
If your sims have a garden, 'piggy' horses will eat the growing plants autonomously - scolding them for that is another way to train out the piggy trait :) (which in that instance you really want to do because AUGH not the perfect ghost chili!)
6th April 2013 8:15am
Someone says...
I found out a way to get the hunting trait on dogs. For some unknown reason, eating fish (from floor) rises the hunting trait. I adopted a dog without hunting trait, laid out anchovies on the floor, and had her to eat them. It only took five to get the trait. I have no idea if this is a bug or not.
19th March 2013 12:46pm
wheatberry says...
From other wiki's, the hyper will have a slower energy decay, not drop faster as indicated above. I don't know which is correct. Thanks!
8th February 2013 4:17am
Anonymous says...
Hey Carl/Admin,
I just want to point out that my cat didn't have to be trained by a sim for the hunting trait. She just practiced on a toy, and the hunting skill just, appeared! But she did have the hunter trait.....
That's great to hear. I had a lot of issues when writing the guides, but particularly with Dogs.
3rd February 2013 2:09pm
Chupito says...

I have little skittish kitty that I adopted and I was wondering how to get rid of the skittish trait. The guide says to train adventurous but she won't jump on, look under or explore anything (I have an adventurous adult cat and on the things he can perform "explore" on, she gets "hide" instead). I have also been unable to scold her for hiding or panicking when I got her just neither before, nor during, nor after doing a skittish action.

What can I do? Do I have to wait until she is an adult?


2nd February 2013 11:34pm
SARAH says...
how do you change the name of a newborn puppy? right now mine is called puppy 1..
17th February 2013 8:45am
YouHadMeAtHello says...
I think you go into care and click on the change name button. Hope that helped.
4th March 2013 3:26am
Sirisma says...
The reason you can't get rid of Noisy by forcing the horse to nicker and then scolding, is that when you force them to nicker the training goes up the same amount it goes down when scolding. Found that out the hard way.
You have to catch them when they do it of their own accord.
9th January 2013 3:04am
Jade says...
Dogs can learn the Hunter trait, I know, because I adopted one, without the trait, and made my Sim teach him to hunt. He eventually picked it up after constantly hunting, training, and I think about 5 or 6 praises (if I remember correctly). I do however remember that there was a green border around it which I know that it was a trained trait.
6th January 2013 6:09am
Amie says...
A note about the Likes Swimming trait: dogs will sometimes shake after getting wet, and if one of your sims is nearby it will give a minor negative moodlet for wet dog, and they will stop what they are doing to react to getting splashed. It can make tending your garden with the sprinklers on a little annoying.
5th December 2012 3:23am
Tammi says...
Please note that the loyalty trait can cause the dog's social to drop dramatically(!) and constantly. I had two with this trait and after taking perfect care of them, they still had such low Social that the social worker took them both away.
1st December 2012 3:59pm
shamaurybro says...
you can also train hyper by simply making your puppy or adult dog run around until it inproves
5th August 2014 3:57pm
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