Bringing a pet home for the first time is one of life’s greatest joys. To prepare for your new pal’s arrival, you’ll need to select food, toys, a veterinarian, household supplies, and oh yes, a name! The sooner you begin using your buddy’s new name, the sooner they’ll learn it and start feeling right at home. So how does one come up with a good pet name? Check out these useful tips.
General Tips For Choosing A Pet Name
When it comes time to choose a pet name, consider these basic guidelines:
- Pick a name that your pet will easily understand. One or two syllable names tend to be the best.
- Avoid names that sound similar to command words. The name “Bo” might be too close to “No,” for example.
- Avoid names that sound like the names of other people or animals living in the house. Is your son named Jack? Don’t name your dog Max.
- Don’t change the name of a shelter pet or pre-owned pet. Trying to a force a new name on your pal may confuse them and make them feel anxious.
RELATED STORY: How To Adopt A Dog Or Cat: Every Question Answered
How To Come Up With A Pet Name
Ready to start brainstorming names? Need a little inspiration? Here are some ideas:
Pull From Pop Culture
Are you a movie buff? TV fanatic? Music enthusiast? Bona fide bookworm? Why not take inspiration from your favorite form of entertainment? If you’re a David Bowie fan, you could name your furball Ziggy. Do you love the Star Wars movies? How about the names Obi, Yoda, or Leia? The possibilities are endless when you look to what you love.
Answer The Call Of Nature
Nature is filled with loads of lovely names for pets. If you have a fluffy Chow Chow dog, you could name them Bear! Or how about a gray kitten named Pigeon? There are plenty of great flower and plant names, too. We like Aster, Quince, Fig, and Tulip.
Explore Other Cultures
Consider your breed’s heritage when choosing a name. Do you have a German Shepherd or German Pinscher? Check out some German human names, such as Wendel or Bamey. Bringing home a Persian cat? Look up Persian names like Gita, Ebi, and Lila.
Pick From The Most Popular
Looking for a name that is a guaranteed winner? These are the top dog and cat names of 2013 according to Vetstreet.com.
Top 5 Female Puppy Names:
Top 5 Male Puppy Names:
RELATED STORY: The Most Popular Dog Breeds
Top 5 Female Kitten Names:
Top 5 Male Kitten Names:
RELATED STORY: The Top Cat Breeds In The U.S.
Once you choose a name for your pet, start using it right away, but only when you want to get your pet’s attention. If you use it too often at first — for example, in conversations with your significant other – your pet may simply think it’s just another common word.
When you do use your pet’s name, offer them praise, attention, and treats when they look at you. Eventually, your pet will recognize their name and you can stop rewarding every acknowledgement.
How did you come up with your pet’s name? Leave a comment and let us know, and consider signing up for PetPlus, a benefit program for pet owners that provides member-only access to medications at wholesale prices, plus discounts on food, supplies, boarding and more.