Inuyasha (犬夜叉 ?, also romanized as Inuyasha) is a brave but naïve half-demon. He had a close relationship to his mother, but never knew his father. Orphaned at a young age, InuYasha was rejected both by humans who feared his demonic powers and by demons who despised his human "weakness", with the latter group including his imperious half-brother Sesshomaru. This sense of alienation was compounded by his apparent betrayal by Kikyo, making him cautious about trusting anyone or exposing his emotions. InuYasha maintains a crass, rude attitude towards almost everyone, although he is slightly less rude to his usual companions. He tends to let anger to cloud his judgment and cause him to act rashly, often resulting in violence. He is particularly offended by suggestions that he is an inferior demon due to his human parentage. InuYasha has superhuman strength, speed, stamina, defense, healing, and senses; particularly hearing and smelling. He can also channel his demon energy into his claws into an attack named Iron Reaver Soul Stealer that, when combined with InuYasha's blood, is called Blades of Blood. When he is not in his human form and his life is in serious danger, he turns into a pure demon with an out of control personality.

InuYasha's sword Tetsusaiga (鉄砕牙 Tessaiga?) was forged from a fang from the mouth of his father, who left it to him as an heirloom. When the sword became damaged, one of InuYasha's own fangs was used to repair it. The sword enables him to use such moves as Kenatsu, the ability to cut an enemy without physical contact; Wind Scar, a special attack accomplished by finding the fissure or scar between colliding demonic winds of Tetsusaiga's wielder and the opposing demon; and Backlash Wave, which creates large twisters that redirect an enemy attack in conjunction with a Wind Scar. Tetsusaiga is also capable of the Adamant Barrage technique, in which Tetsusaiga's blade turns to fragmented diamonds and can be whipped to shoot out shards, and Meidō Zangetsuha (冥道 残月破 Meido Zangetsuha?), which creates a path to Hell.

In the anime, InuYasha and Kagome can jointly create the Sacred Backlash Wave by her firing a Sacred Arrow through InuYasha's Backlash Wave. Given directly from an orb of a bat demon, InuYasha was able to use the Barrier Breaker (红色鉄砕牙 ?) which renders most barriers useless. He can also use the Dragon-Scaled Tetsusaiga to absorb yōki energy.

After Kagome places the Beads of Subjugation necklace around his neck, she can use it to enforce simple commands upon him, often by using the word "sit" to make the beads yank him downward onto the ground.

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