The Zouwu (sometimes written as ZouWu) was a powerful magical beast native to China.[2][3]


The Zouwu was "five-coloured" and resembled a "gigantic elephant-sized cat."[4] It was a monstrously large feline-like beast with a striped body, scraggly mane, four fangs that curled out of its mouth, long sharp claws, and a disproportionately long, ruffled multicoloured tail. Zouwus were incredibly powerful and fast, capable of travelling 1,000 miles in a day.[1]

The Zouwu appeared to be able to Apparate as demonstrated during Newt Scamander's escape from the French Ministry of Magic. This ability was powerful enough to bypass the Ministry's unplottability.


Skender, the cruel owner and ringmaster of the Circus Arcanus, captured a female Zouwu and bore the scars of its abuse.[1] In early September 1927, Newt Scamander encountered the escaped Zouwu, and demonstrated having knowledge about this creature, though curiously, he had not mentioned it in his Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them book. To Newt, the creature is just "like a big kitten", despite it being terrifying to most human beings.[5] Newt used a toy to tame the Zouwu and lured it into his suitcase. Newt also had created a habitat for the Zouwu, and he treated the creature's scars with Dittany before releasing its shackles.[5]

When Newt, Tina Goldstein and Leta Lestrange were cornered by a pack of Matagots in the French Ministry of Magic, Newt unleashed the Zouwu from his suitcase to fight off the smaller felines before they travelled away to the Cimetière du Père-Lachaise. The Zouwu nuzzled Newt affectionately before it returned into the suitcase.[5]

During the 2020s, the same Zouwu appeared as a Foundable during the Calamity. Volunteer members of the Statute of Secrecy Task Force were able to free her, allowing the Zouwu to return to her original time.[6]

Behind the scenes

A Zouwu as a POP! Vinyl

  • J. K. Rowling confirmed that the Zouwu is based on the creature of the same name in Chinese mythology.[2][7]
  • When Eddie Redmayne and J. K. Rowling first revealed the Zouwu in interviews, some fans misconstrued the pronunciation of its name and incorrectly credited the creature's name to be "Taowu," a different[8] Chinese mythological beast. This was later corrected by Chinese-speaking fans via social media.
  • Zouwu first appeared in Shanhaijing, a Chinese book about mythical creatures.


The Harry Potter Wiki has 19 images related to Zouwu.

A Zouwu as seen in Harry Potter: Wizards Unite

External links

Notes and references

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