Dragonair is a long, serpentine Pokémon with sky blue scales and a white underside. It has a rounded snout, oval purple eyes, and a small, white horn on its forehead. On each side of its head is a small, stylized wing, which is white and curves into a swirl at the base. Three blue, crystal orbs adorn its body: one on its neck and two on its tail.
Dragonair emits a gentle aura that gives it a mystical appearance. As seen in the anime, it can make its wings grow larger in order to fly, but otherwise moves through the air unaided. Dragonair hosts a large amount of energy within its body, which it can discharge through the crystals on its neck and tail. This causes its body to brighten and give off a different aura that changes the weather in its vicinity. As a result, Dragonair has been referred as a divine Pokémon since ancient times by agricultural people. Dragonair is a rare Pokémon that inhabits pristine seas and lakes. The lakes Dragonair lives in are usually filled with offerings from people in gratitude. There is a saying that a person sees a Dragonair at the start of a year, the person will be healthy all year long. In the past, Outrage was its signature move.
Dragonair debuted in the banned episodeEP035, as a Dratini the warden of the Safari Zone, Kaiser, was protecting. Over the 30 years since Kaiser last saw the elusive Dragon type, it evolved into Dragonair. It also now has a child Dratini.
In On Olden Pond, a Dragonair lived in a lake that Mr. Saridakis planned to build a luxury resort on. Dragonair was discovered to have saved Mr. Saridakis in the past. A second, present-day rescue led to him cancelling his plans for the lake.
Clair's Dragonair appeared in Debonaire Dragonair, where it was seen being used to battle Ryu's Seadra and win. It later cam with its Trainer to the Dragon's Den, where it battled and was defeated by Suicune.
Dragonair and its evolutionary relatives share their category name with Horsea, its evolved forms, Salamence, and Goodra. They are all known as the Dragon Pokémon.
Dragonair appears to be based on sea serpents or ryu, traditional Japanese dragons or Chinese dragons who bring good luck. It also resembles a snake, its tail even resembling that of a rattlesnake. The wings on its head resemble those on the sandals and hat of the Greek god Hermes, and its long, snakelike body may be a reference to the snakes on his scepter.
Dragonair may also be based on the imugi, a proto-dragon that resembles a snake and lives in water or caves, much like Dragonair. After an imugi lives a thousand years, a jewel (called a Yeouiju) will fall from the sky. If the imugi catches it, it will become a true dragon. The jewels on Dragonair's neck and tail might also be a reference to Chinese dragons's associations with pearls.
Dragonair may be a combination of dragon and air (referring to its ability to change the weather or to its air of grace and majesty) or debonair (referring to its graceful appearance and flying). It could also refer to a "lair", the traditional home of a dragon.
Hakuryū could be taken to mean 白竜 (white dragon). Hakuryu was also the name of the dragon-like companion of Zhu Bajie/Cho Hakkai from the legend of the Journey to the West in Buddhist lore.