There are 5 types of animals you can have on your farm; your dog, horse, cows, chickens, and sheep. You'll only receive 1 horse and 1 dog, but it's your choice how many of the other types you want. You can have up to 8 chickens and up to 16 cows and sheep. You don't have to have 8 cows and 8 sheep to make up 16. Having 12 cows and 4 sheep work just fine as well.
When you start your game you automatically receive a dog. He's just a puppy at first but he'll be full grown by the Fall 1 of your first year. Your dog will begin to scare away the wild dogs that come onto your farmland at 8pm. You can even buy the Frisbee and Dog Ball from Won if you want to play with your doggie.
The horse comes from Barley, who comes by your farm sometime during your first Spring. He has an extra foal and asks if you would take care of it for him. The foal will take 120 days to grow up. The horse likes to stay outside all the time except for when the weather is bad. He also likes to be brushed. After the year is up, Barley will come back to your farm to see how well your horse is doing. If you've only raised it's friendship level up to 4 (or less) hearts, Barley will be mad and takes your horse away! He'll return again the next year with a full grown horse for you, but it won't have any hearts on it's friendship level. When your horse has a high friendship level with you, there's a good chance that you can easily win the Horse Races that occur in the Spring and Fall. You can even use the horse as a portable shipping bin, but he can't leave your farmyard.
The other 3 types of animals will produce for you items that you can sell for money. There are six grades of items that your animals can produce, each dependant on the animal's friendship level and if it's won any contests.
|Animal produce grades|
|Small||0 - 3 Hearts|
|Medium||4 - 7 Hearts|
|Large||8 - 10 Hearts|
|Golden||Festival winner + 8-10 Hearts|
|P-Type||Festival winner + 8-10 Hearts + 600 hours of outdoor pasture time|
|X-Type||1 in 255 chance from P-Type producing animal|
The animals all like spending time outside. You can let them wander around your farm or you can push them into a fenced-in area that you've built on your crop field using lumber and/or stones. The Bell that you can buy from Barley will call the animals towards you when you ring it, making it easier to get them all back inside if it's going to rain the next day. The more love the animal feels toward you, the farther away it can be from your Bell before it will start to move. Baby animals have low friendship levels and you'll typically have to be standing right next to them to have them hear the Bell and follow you. You can leave your animals outside all night if the weather forecast is sunny for the next day, but you'll need some full-grown grass for them to eat. You can buy Grass Seeds from Jeff's store for 500 G each.
The downside of having your animals outside is they might be scared by the barking wild dogs that visit your farm randomly at 8pm. If your dog is an adult he'll pretty much scare the wild dog away, but they'll be chasing each other all around your farm and there's a chance a cow might get in their way and be spooked. The other downside is the long times outside will hamper your efforts to have Golden-grade items. If any of your animals win their contest festivals (Chicken, Cow, or Sheep) and they've spent over 600 in-game hours outside, they'll start to give you P-Type grade items instead of Golden ones. If you want an animal to give you Golden grade items, keep it inside as much as you can until after you've won the contest. Just remember once it is outside for 600 hours, it will automatically upgrade to producing P-Type items.
On rare occastions you might receive an X-Type item from your animal. The X-Type sells for much more than the P-Type items! You might only end up with one or two X-Type item during an animal's lifetime since there is a 1 in 255 chance of an animal producing an X-Type each day. An easier way of producing X-Type items is to combine all grades of a specific produce using your kitchen. If you put together a Small, Medium, Large, Golden, and P-Type egg via your kitchen, the combined items will give you one X-Type egg. The same goes for Milk, Mayonaise, and Cheese. Unfortunatly you can't cook any Wool or Yarn into X-Type counterparts, so you're just going to have to hope that your sheep can produce some for you.
ppssstt...if you wanted to "help" your sheep along, before you sheer of it's wool save your game. If you don't receive X-Wool, reload your save and try again.