Pets – Choosing the Perfect Name

Once you have chosen a new furry friend (and he/she has chosen you!), one of the first things you’ll probably do is to think about the perfect name, which can be a lot of fun for you and your family. This name will last for your pet’s lifetime and may be the most important word they will ever learn, apart from ‘food’!

The purpose of your dog’s name

A doggo’s name is very important to him/her as it is the link to understanding how and when to respond to you. Did you know that canines are able to understand some human speech sounds and when they hear their name, they know that you are expecting them to respond to you in some way. A dog’s name alerts them to the fact that once they hear it, the next words you say will be an instruction or request that will affect them in some way: “Charlie! Dinner!”

The purpose of your cat’s name

Recent scientific research suggests that cats can also learn and respond to their names. Kitties can learn their names and respond to your voice well enough to come when you call them but you have to call them in a similar way each time. It is important how their name sounds when spoken out loud as they respond better when the pitch of your voice is higher and when it varies each time it is used. Cats respond best to shorter names because they give a clearer and simpler message. Felines are able to hear and process this sound and become able to associate it with you trying to get their attention.

Some Ideas for Choosing Names

How do you begin? Maybe you could call him or her after a movie character, such as Frodo or ET?  A food such as Chips, Doughnut or Mango? Or you could give your furry a human name such as Charlie, Alfie or Amy? Or you could link the name to his/her breed, such as Hamish for a Scottie or Chang for a Siamese? The possibilities are, of course, endless.

There are usually current trends or fashions for pets’ names which may give you some ideas.

  • Sometimes people name their poochies after movie villains, such as Joker!
  • Human names are always popular as they make your pet seem more like a member of the family.
  • Names of historical figures are also popular, especially if you have a hero or heroine such as Winston or Diana.
  • Pop culture may also inspire you: Justin or Gaga perhaps!
  • Places you have visited may inspire your pooch’s name, such as Paris, Roma or Maurice.
  • Some folk even name their pet after their favourite alcoholic drink: Pimms, Chardonnay or Amstel!

The possibilities are of course endless. Many pet parents find that, once they and their furry are used to the name, they end up loving the name almost as much as they love their pet.

More Tips and Ideas

  • Try not to choose a name which is too similar to commands or instructions which you may give to your pet, which can be confusing.
  • Make sure your whole family agrees to the name as making up nicknames for your furry friend can cause confusion.
  • Some trainers suggest giving your pets names which are two syllables long, which are easily learned by dogs and cats and easily spoken by their owners. Names of three syllables can be confusing to dogs. A name ending in a long vowel sound, like Bounder, or a name ending in a short “a”, such as Tinka, make the name sound more distinctive to your pet and easier for him/her to distinguish from other words.
  • Try to avoid choosing a name that sounds too similar to the names of other furry friends in your home, which could result in confusion and in both of them ignoring you eventually.

 Have fun!


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