Arcanine is a very large, wolf-like Pokémon. The majority of its body is covered with orange fur, which is covered with black stripes, like a tiger. Its head, face, chest, legs, and tail have a light, cream colored hair, that somewhat resembles flames. Arcanine somewhat resemble the Chinese Shisa, a traditional Ryukyuan decoration, resembling a cross between a lion and a canine, from Okinawa mythology.
Arcanine have the abilities Flash Fire or Intimidate. Flash Fire activates when the user is hit with a fire-type move, allowing the user to become immune to fire damage, and raise the damage on any of its fire-type attacks. Intimidate will lower an opponents attack stat by one in battle. Arcanine is one of the fastest Pokémon in the world. It is said that it can travel up to 6200 miles in one day and night. Arcanine can also carry its trainer on its back and scout the seven-seas in less than 3 days. It can learn powerful attacks like Flare Blitz, ExtremeSpeed, and Thunder Fang.
In the anime
Arcanine have made quite a few appearances in the anime series. One of its larger appearances has been under the ownership of Gary, which was first seen in the episode The Battle of the Badge.
In the Johto League Champions episode The Stolen Stones!, Arcanine appear again. Two characters called Ramona and Keegan own three Arcanine, which they enjoy riding. In the episode, Ramona teaches Ash to ride and Arcanine, and Keegan's Arcanine, "Arky", helps to track down stolen Fire Stones.
Less often than their pre-evolved form, Arcanine have sometimes been shown as police dogs.
During the Indigo League Tournament, Ash battled an Arcanine in the episode Fire and Ice.
In the episode, On Cloud Arcanine, both May and Drew were after an Arcanine to capture it for an upcoming contest. Discovering that it had a litter of Growlithe puppies though, they decided to leave it alone.
Arcanine are based on the Shisa, a traditional Ryukyuan decoration, resembling a cross between a lion and a dog, from Okinawa mythology. Pairs of these decorations are used as guardians and to invite good luck.
Arcanine's English name comes from a combination of the words "Arcane" meaning ancient and "Canine".
Despite its species being "Legendary Pokémon", it is not considered a Legendary Pokémon. This likely due to it evolving from Growlithe and Legendary Pokémon can never have an evolution chain.
Originally, Arcanine was going to be a Legendary Pokémon but the idea was scrapped when it was given a pre-evolution.
Arcanine's base stats are the highest of any Pokémon that has only evolved once.
Arcanine's prototype name was "Blaze."
The YellowPokédex entry states that Arcanine is seen in China, showing that there are similarities in regions with the real world and Pokémon world.
Arcanine is possibly a mix breed of a wolf and tiger, and since they're seen in China, this could relate.