How to Choose a Name For Your Pet

Name Your Pet

Choosing the perfect name for your pet can be challenging (and fun, of course), especially if you are a first time pet owner!

Trends come and go, just as they do for kids' names.  We don't often hear dogs named Fido or cats named Fluffy anymore and a big part of that is because now our pets are an integrated part of the family or home.

We often hear of new parents wanting to wait until their new baby's personality emerges, or they look for a connection to a family member or someone 'famous'.  That same formula works for our pets!  Spend some time when deciding a name...and here are some helpful tips:

  • Choose a name that you like. You will be using it all the time, so you should enjoy the sound of it 
  • Keep it short. Longer names can be difficult for your dog or cat to understand and annoying for you to say over and over again
  • Try out the new name for a few days and see how your pet responds
  • Try to stay away from some of the trendy or common names.  There is a golf community in our area and many of the owners named their dogs Bear after golfer, Jack Nicholas, who is known as the ‘Golden Bear’.
  • Avoid using a name that sounds like a command you plan to teach your dog. It would be confusing to teach FLETCH to "fetch", or for SHEA to "stay", and JOE can sound a lot like "no".
  • Be sure the name isn't one that others may find offensive or embarrassing. This includes potential racial or cultural slurs, general insults, crass slang terms, and anything that has a curse word in it.  Because your favorite character from “Snow White” was Dopey, doesn't make it a great name for a pet!
  • Avoid a complicated name like Sir Fluffy Von Wagglestein, unless you plan to simplify it with “Sir” or “Fluffy”.
  • Try not to change an adult pet’s name unless absolutely necessary. If you must change the name, choose one that sounds similar. “Bailey” can be changed to “Hailey” or “Kaylee,” and “Charlie” can easily become “Harley” or “Farley.”

Hopefully, you will have your pet for a very long time, so choose wisely....and have some fun!  Check out some of 2013's favorites if you need some inspiration!


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