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Naming your dog: From the trendy to the bizarre

My dad was a man of few words. When late in life he decided to get a dog, who was aptly named, Dog. That was good enough for him. But most people prefer to put a little more personality behind their pet names. 

If you’re thinking of adding a canine companion to your family, or are having trouble naming a recent adoptee, you may want to have explore a range of names. To help you get started, we did a little of the homework for you, and the results run the gamut from the trendy to the outlandish.

Dog Names From The Past

History is a wonderful resource when searching for dog names. In Medieval Europe, dogs had names that might ring oddly in our modern ears. Chaucer, for example, mentioned such names as Colle, Talbot, and Gerland—which sound more like partners in a law firm than a trio of hunting dogs. George Washington went a more romantic route, naming three of his dogs Sweetlips, Venus, and Truelove. And Herbert Hoover went for sturdy masculine names like King Tut, Big Ben, Sonny, and Eaglehurst Gillette. By the 1950s, we saw more familiar options like Champ, Scout, and Bandit. While these might not be quite right for your pet, they certainly open the field of possibility. 

Trending Dog Names 

These days, some very human names have become popular dog names too. Max, Charlie, Buddy, Cooper, and Jack lead the pack among boy dogs, while among girl dogs the leaders are Bella, Lucy, Daisy, Molly, and Lola. Digging a little deeper in the trending lists, you’ll also find some standards like Apollo, Brutus, Romeo, Dixie, Lucky, and Angel. The beauty of these names is that they’re easy for the dogs to learn and easy for owners to call. (It’s hard to imagine President Hoover not running out of breath summoning Eaglehurst Gillette.) One recent trend that’s gaining in popularity is foodie names, many of which are derived from plays on the word “pup.” Puppermint, Pupperjack, Puprika, Puppernickel, and Pupperoni are fun. Naming more than one dog? There’s even a Muttsarella to go with your Pupperoni. Not enough? Try some celebrity-based dog names—like Kanye Westie, Katy Pawry, Diggy Azalea, Snarls Barkley, and (a favorite) LL Drool J.

The Outer Limits

For those looking to break barriers with some truly unusual names, there’s no shortage. Some of these are even long enough to measure up to Eaglehurst Gillette. For example, there’s Lady Doodle Savage, Leilei Puppypoo Mcclure, Lordess Niblonia of Townsend Manor, Mackeys Molly Bea of Dawson Farms, and Master Humphrey Beauguardus. If you plan on using any of these, you might need to buy your pooch a bigger ID tag. In the end, you may just want to go with Spot.


Cecily Kellogg is a pet lover who definitely has crazy cat lady leanings. Her pets are all shelter rescues, including the dog, who is scared of the cats. She spent eight years working as a Veterinary Technician before becoming a writer. Today she writes all over the web, including here at Figo.

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