Japanese Name: ジュゴン (Jugong)
Classification: Sea Lion Pokémon
Weight: 264.6 lbs
Gender Ratios: Male 50% – Female 50%
Base Stats: HP 90 / Atk 70 / Def 80 / SpAtk 70 / SpDef 95 / Spd 70
Dewgong is one of those Pokemon that I think people forget is actually a Pokemon. She is absolutely as “never-used” and NU Pokemon come, and perhaps many trainers would think that is for good reason. Her typing is not anything amazing and leaves her with several weaknesses. Her base stats are average at best and slightly hindering at worst. But with the right trainer and the right team, Dewgong can really shine. You just have to be willing to put a little extra time, effort, and strategy behind her.
Let’s take a look at what a lot of people consider to be Dewgong’s weaknesses, her base stats and her typing. With no base stats above 100, Dewgong doesn’t have a really solid role that jumps out to the forefront when planning a team. But with stats that don’t range away from one another too much, Dewgong has the ability to make an interesting all-around wall or even a choice-scarfed sweeper on the physical or special front. A special defense of 95 is really nothing to sneeze at, and Dewgong can make amazing use of her solid defenses thanks to her wonderful abilities, which we’ll look at in a second.
Dewgong’s second main weakness, to the large majority of Pokemon trainers, is just that – her weaknesses. She takes double damage from Electric, Grass, Fighting, and Rock. This makes her a Pokemon you don’t want to send out into Stealth Rocks (which run rampant on every tier) as well as one you wouldn’t want to leave standing out against any Electric Pokemon, as nearly every Pokemon of the Electric type will outpace this snowy white sea lion. Fighting and Grass are also going to cause Dewgong a substantial number of problems.
These issues that face Dewgong are not by any means insurmountable. Let’s take a look at Dewgong’s three abilities: Hydration, Thick Fat, and Ice Body. Thick Fat is an ability best left on the wayside. Dewgong doesn’t take double damage from Fire or Ice as it is, and Hydration and Ice Body are really what make Dewgong an amazing addition to a team. On a Rain Dance team (because let’s face it, Dewgong isn’t going to be competing on an OU team with a Drizzle Politoed, no matter how much I might want to put her up there), Dewgong gains the ability to use nearly limitless Rest as well as being able to pop in on foes that you believe will attempt to Wil-O-Wisp or Spore another of your teammates. Whereas Ice Body gives Dewgong some healing ability on a Hail team. Each of these abilities can be complimented by the Leftovers, but each ability can also essentially take the place of Leftovers, giving you more flexibility and opportunity for creativity with your item choices. On a Hail Team, the slow HP regeneration on the field might let you experiment with a Choice Scarf set, particularly on the NU tier. Alternatively, making surprising use of an elemental Gem could throw your opponent for a loop.
Dewgong’s movepool is just expansive enough to make it interesting. With equal opportunity to hit as a physical attacker or a special attacker, your foe will find it difficult to predict what you’ll be carrying. The first thing I want to mention is the fact that Dewgong can learn Ice Shard, a priority Ice move (which is STAB for Dewgong). This helps Dewgong face down Grass types that she would otherwise be weak to. On top of that, Dewgong can learn Encore, which can be used as a pivot to stop a foe’s stalling Pokemon or a Pokemon you fear is about to start setting up on you (such as the Dragon Dance Crawdaunt). Dewgong has several other damaging move options, including Signal Beam, Aqua Jet, Brine, Aqua Tail, Ice Beam, Hidden Power, Blizzard, Surf, and Waterfall through level-up or TM/HM. In that same vein, level-up and TMs give Dewgong some interesting support options as well. On a Hail Team, Safeguard could help to prevent a foe from burning Dewgong in an effort to mitigate the HP regeneration from the hail. The aforementioned Rest and Encore are also wonderful options, as well as things like Aqua Ring, Toxic, and Protect. Egg moves for Dewgong can be rather interesting as well, including everything from Lick to Horn Drill, Perish Song, Horn Drill, Fake Out, Water Pulse, Iron Tail, Stockpile, Spit Up, and Swallow.
With these options available, on lower-tiered weather teams, Dewgong really can shine. One just has to be willing to look past her rather lackluster stats and see the potential this lovely sea mammal has to offer!