Now ever since patch 3.2 (or somewhere abouts) it was safe to level your pets in a Wrath heroic. Someday it will probably be safe to do the same thing in Cataclysm, but we’re not there yet.
So what can you do to get your pet from level 82 – 85 quickly? Well the easiest thing you can do is tame a level 85 pet. Duh! However, the list of level 83-85 pets available for taming is pretty slim. Most aren’t even families that provide raid buffs/debuffs. Nope chances are you’re going have to do this the hard way.
Here is what I’ve found to be effective. Daily quests. Specifically, Tol Barad dailies. I find that one round of TB dailies (including the ones unlocked from winning the battle) are enough to get a pet from level 82-84.
If you haven’t done these dailies yet, you should. There are some great hunter rewards associated with this reputation, including an epic trinket. I should warn you though that these dailies suck big time. If a quest requires you to kill 10 mobs, you’re guaranteed to end up killing at least 20 before all is said and done.
These quests have some of the fastest respawning mobs in all of Azeroth. It’s brutal, especially if you’re inclined to stop and loot. The good news is that your level 82 pet should be up to the task of handling the level 85 mobs, and you’ll gain lots of experience. Like I said you’re pet should go from 82-84 in one pass.
That last level takes a little longer, and I’ve found that a round of Therazane dailies isn’t even enough to push you to the top.
So that’s how I’m leveling my pets right now, how about you guys? What’s working for you?