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Dragon Age: Origins The Mabari Hound - Getting Started
In order to begin the Dragon Age: Origins The Mabari Hound side-quest, you'll need to be in the King's Camp over at Ostagar. Also, this quest can only be started before the battle against the Darkspawn at Ostagar.
Once in the King's Camp, seek out The Kennel Master. Once you have engaged in conversation with him, he will tell you that a Mabari under his keeping -- the previous owner died -- has swallowed Darkspawn blood which is a very bad thing. It's left the Mabari poisoned and the Kennel Master needs you to find a special flower that can cure it.
If you're not a Human Noble, the Kennel Master will first ask you to muzzle the dog. While doing so, you will be given an option to kill the dog -- doing this will more-or-less fail the quest entirely.
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Finding The Wilds Flower
In order to enter the Korcari Wilds, the location you need to go to in order to find the Wilds Flower, you will first need to continue on the main quest which is becoming a Grey Warden. Once you've been tasked with finding the treaties -- again, this is referring to the main quest -- you will then be able to access the Korcari Wilds.
Once you're in the Wilds, and have passed the Dying Soldier, follow the road until you come across some ruins. The Wilds Flower can be found just in-front of said ruins. The flower is surrounded by green leaves, and the flower itself is red. It should be easy to find as, like all pick-able items, it should have a sort of a sparkling effect around the actual plant.
Once you've picked it up, it's time to head back to the Kennel Master.
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While on your way back to the King's Camp, there is a small chance that you might encounter several enemies. They can either be wolves or Darkspawn, so keep en eye out as no matter which of the two you might face, they will be in quite a large group -- sometimes you might walk into a fight between the wolves and Darkspawn, if this happens you should first focus on getting rid of the Darkspawn.
Once you're at the King's Camp, all that's left to do is to approach the Kennel Master and hand him the Wilds Flower. If you do not demand payment through one of the speech options, you will receive nothing. However, if you do demand the Kennel Master to pay you, you will receive 50 silver coins and 500 Experience Points.
After the battle of Ostagar is over, the Dog that you helped will find you at the Deserted Farmland location in Lothering.
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All screenshots and references from Dragon Age: Origins.