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With the new update, you can now choose a buddy under your profile and get candy from walking various distances. What is not clear, however, is if you can change your buddy later on. Say I'm a few candy short of evolving one Pokemon, so I choose that Pokemon as my buddy. Can I change my buddy to something else after I get the amount of candy I wanted for the first Pokemon?

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According to this report,

Buddy Pokémon can be swapped out at will in “Pokémon Go’s” latest update, but doing so has no impact on your total kilometers walked stat. It will, however, reset progress toward your next candy. Just make sure all incoming candies are earned before making a switch.

So, the answer is yes, but the progress towards your reward will be reset each time you switch.

To change your buddy, follow these steps:

Click the button on the bottom left of the screen showing your character’s face.

Hit the button on the bottom right of the screen with the three lines.

Select “buddy.”

Hit the button on the bottom right of the screen with the two arrows.

You will be asked “Are you sure you want to swap your buddy?” Hit yes.

Select the Pokemon you want to have as your new buddy.

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    Note that the distance calculation (at least in my limited experience so far) has a delay, e.g. when I walk for some time and then stop, the buddy distance may show 0.8/1km but 2 minutes later (without moving) it could show 0.2/1km (with 1 candy earned). Hence it could be beneficial to NOT swap buddies during or immediately after a walk.
    – hertitu
    Commented Sep 14, 2016 at 12:31
  • @hertitu, naturally. If it updated every second, the servers would likely get overloaded and it'd be Day 1 all over again. But yes, that is an important thing to note, since the buddy system is unlike the egg hatching system in that you can lose your progress by switching buddies.
    – Vemonus
    Commented Sep 14, 2016 at 13:57
  • btw, this is somewhat outdated with the latest buddy changes.
    – Dragonrage
    Commented Feb 17, 2020 at 21:56

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