Elden Ring defines this creature as a large feline-hound looking guardian that serves as a ‘Watchdog’ for the Burial Tree of the catacombs. Whatever this is, it’s enormous, creepy, and dangerous. It is also a target to those of us who love a challenge.

The Erdtree Burial Watchdog in Elden Ring can be an intimidating foe, especially if you aren’t prepared to face it. However, there is an item that you can only get by defeating that thing. If you want it, you must go through this mysterious foe.

There are other reasons to go for the Erdtree Burial Watchdog’s head besides glory, item drops, and achievements.

It is an excellent way to get a power boost right at the beginning of the game. To completionists that are playing Elden Ring, taking down this boss is also a must.

Here’s how to defeat the Erdtree Burial Watchdog in Elden Ring.

How to Defeat the Erdtree Burial Watchdog

Like many other bosses in Souls-like games, this is all about learning the creature’s pattern and attacking when it’s safe.

Unfortunately, unlike open field bosses, you can’t get the horse to make it help you here. It works to beat the Tree Sentinel and other creatures, but when fighting e Burial Watchdogs, you have to do it on your own.

The Watchdog has a decent number of attacks that it can use against you, but most of them can be avoided by running away or dodging away from this feline dog thing’s sword.

If the Watchdog stands up, be careful. It will raise its blade and walk towards you. You won’t have much time to react to its attack. In this stance, the Watchdog can drop its weapon on your head so fast you won’t notice until you’re hit.

When it does that, look at his hand. It will go up a little bit before it slams the sword against the ground. If you aren’t confident enough to trust your reaction time, run away. It might be a good idea to run and doge to the sides if you are cornered.

If you are too close, the Watchdog might spin around or try to swing its sword against you. It can be a quick vertical attack or a stab. The last two are easy to identify and dodge.

The spinning attack is fast, but it has a tell. The Erdtree Burial Watchdog will drop the sword to its right before spinning. Once it does that, just move out of the way. Players who get used to this attack timing can use the end of attack frames to attack the boss when it won’t strike back because it is still going through its attack’s animation frames.

You can jump over the blade at the end of the spin and hit your Strong Attack button. If done correctly, you will be able to recover and doge away before the enemy attacks again.

There are two other attacks that you must worry about when fighting this beast, its fire breath and its downward sword thrust. The first one is pretty easy to deal with; you can just run away when the creature’s head starts to shake.

If you have throwing knives or other damaging items, you can use them to deal some damage from afar. You can also use your bow or cast some damaging spells from a safe distance.

The other one is a bit tricky, though. The Erdtree Burial Watchdog will float high above your head and perform a downward sword thrust. If you’re under it, it will deal a lot of damage, but there’s another problem when it hits the ground, the attack sends a shockwave around the boss.

You will have to perfectly time your dodge, move away, or jump over the area of effect. I suggest you move backward until you’re no longer under it and then just forward to perform a strong aerial attack with your weapon. Once you lend it, dodge away from the boss and repeat.

Make sure that you have at least one way to deal as much damage as possible when the boss is vulnerable. There are a few different ways to deal a single, high damage attack to your enemy in Elden Ring. When creatures are unaware of your presence, for instance, you can do that when you sneak behind them. In case of a boss, you won’t be able to hit them with a sneak attack, but you can make them vulnerable in different ways. 

Although it might be hard, lots of damage at once is how you stagger a boss in Elden Ring. If you manage to do that, take advantage of the situation immediately since it might not happen more than once during a boss fight.

What Do You Get From the Watchdog?

The Erdtree Burial Watchdog is not a single creature. There are four of these protecting different catacombs, and they are also slightly different from each other.

Some of them have a few extra tricks in their sleeves, and each of the watchdogs grants a unique reward, so it all depends on where you meet them.

Stormfoot Catacombs

The first hidden catacombs of the Lands Between. It’s pretty easy to spot. Just go northwest from the Church of Elleh and then look for a weird statue pointing forward.

Interact with it to see a beam of light that will guide you to the Stormfoot Catacombs. Do a good enough job exploring the place, and you will find the Wandering Noble Ashes. After pulling a lever and managing to open the door near the site of grace, you will find the first How to Defeat the Erdtree Burial Watchdog.

This one grants you 1300 runes once defeated and the Noble Sorcerer Ashes. It’s not too many runes, but the ashes are worth it.

Impaler’s Catacombs

Here you get to see a different and more powerful kind of Erdtree Burial Watchdog.

This one has multiple faces, and all of them participate in the fire breath attack, making it a little more dangerous. It also has some little monsters aiding in the battle. They are distracting and annoying, so deal with them first if you can.

Once you beat it, you get 2400 runes and Demi-Human Ashes.

Cliffbottom Catacombs

The one in Cliffbottom Catacombs has multiple faces and can use spell attacks. Although it has a different weapon, its attack patterns are generally the same, except when it casts homing magic projectiles.

In this case, just pay attention to when it starts to glow. The blue lights will appear around it before they are shot at you, so watch out and dodge. The rest of the battle is pretty much like the original one.

Once you beat it, you get 3200 runes and Kaiden Sellsword Ashes.

Final Thoughts

The Erdtree Burial Watchdog isn’t that hard of a boss fight, but it can be tricky if you don’t have an understanding of its attacks. You need to learn how to time your dodges and use your shield, but it might be better to just get out of the way when it swings its sword and hit it with high damaging attacks during its recovery animations.

Your best bet is to wait for its downward thrust attack and hit it with a strong jumping strike. However, if you are a wizard, bait its fire breath attack and use your damaging spells. Make sure to bring at least a couple of FP flasks with you so you can really cause some damage with your magic attacks.

Elden Ring has a new feature that allows you to use a bell to summon spirits that will aid you in battle. This is especially helpful during a boss fight. Mainly because they serve as targets and can help deal damage on these bosses, which means more damage output towards the end goal of defeating the Erdtree Burial Watchdog and less damage towards you.

Using these tactics should make defeating him much more manageable, even if you fight the ones that have extra moves.

If you have any trouble during the fight, even after applying all the tips provided here, it might mean that you need some better equipment, or maybe you should level up before facing the Erdtree Burial Watchdog. However, the first one should be easy enough even before using your runes to upgrade your stats.