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October 12, 2011 at 7:35 AMComments: 3 Faves: 0

Dog Names - Get Your Dog to Answer to a New Name

By Victoria Swanson More Blogs by This Author

Have you ever heard a dog's name and just had to ask the owner, "Where or how did you come up with that?" As a dog trainer, I'm always asking this! There are everyday names, unique names, funny names, and some that are hard to spell or even pronounce. I LOVE hearing the stories behind my client's dog's name. Here are the stories behind my dog's names.

"Romeo, oh Romeo, wherefore art thou, Romeo?"

It took me a few days after getting him before I found the perfect name for my Pomeranian.

I was exercising in the early morning prior to all the crazy meetings ahead of me that day, when it came to me. I was a single mom at the time and just wanted to find love.

I know - how cliche, right?

Well, this puppy followed me EVERYWHERE. He was happy to do whatever I asked of him and the way he looked up at me... well, he wasn't a man, but I could tell he had undying love for me!

As I was exercising, I was thinking...."He's a lover.... what's a good name for a lover dog like him?.... Romeo!" And with that, Romeo got his name!

Now 6 years later, Romeo still lives up to his name with his unconditional love. Oh, Romeo!

Izzy's Name Change... or Not

Then there's my mini dachshund, Izzy. We adopted Izzy when she was 2 years old and therefore she came with her name. I, of course, thought "How cute would it be to change Izzy's name to Juliet?! Romeo and Juliet! Cute, right?"

Well, within just a few days of having Izzy and calling her "Izzy-Juliet" (trying to transition into the new name), I learned a lot about Izzy's personality. With her busyness, craziness, and her quirky antics, Juliet just didn't fit her.

Izzy IS an Izzy. It fits her to a "T" and so, we decided there would be no name change for our little girl! Although - we gave her the nickname "Busy-Izzy" which fits her perfectly!

Get Your Dog to Answer to a New Name

If you've adopted a dog (good for you!) that already has a name you'd like to change or you would like to change your dogs name for some other reason, here is a tip to help with that transition:


Combine both names, the old name first and then the new name. For example, in Izzy's case, when we still thought we wanted to change her name to Juliet, we called her "Izzy-Juliet" to help make the name transition easier.

After a few weeks of doing this, you can drop the old name and your dog should respond to their new name with ease!

So What's In a Dog's Name?

It sometimes represents who we are; our personality, quirkiness or what we LOVE. Sometimes it is what represents our dog; their personality, silliness or what they LOVE. Have fun when choosing a name, but remember this name will be your dog's name for 12 - 17 years.

Here is a list of 2010 Top Dog Names; maybe one of these names will suit your pooch!

Top Male Dog Names

1. Max
2. Buddy
3. Rocky
4. Bailey
5. Jake
6. Charlie
7. Jack
8. Toby
9. Cody
10. Buster
11. Duke
12. Cooper
13. Riley
14. Harley
15. Bear
16. Tucker
17. Murphy
18. Lucky
19. Oliver
20. Sam

Top Female Dog Names

1. Bella
2. Molly
3. Lucy
4. Maggie
5. Daisy
6. Sophie
7. Sadie
8. Chloe
9. Bailey
10. Lola
11. Zoe
12. Abby
13. Ginger
14. Roxy
15. Gracie
16. Coco
17. Sasha
18. Lily
19. Angel
20. Princess

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  • What fun stories! I always love hearing the stories behind pet names :)

    When I was younger, my brother and I used to watch this show called ReBoot. I couldn't tell you anything about the show today - except that there was a dog named Frisket in it. At the time, I was totally dog-crazy and pestering my parents to get a when we finally did, we thought Frisket would be the perfect name. And it was. I love it because it's so unique - you don't hear of a lot of Friskets running around!

    My current dog's name is a lot more common: Lucy. However, it absolutely fits her to a T and I can't imagine her as anything else. It fits her personality exactly - "Lucy" is a very sweet-sounding name, and she can be very sweet when she wants to be (she sleeps on my bed, usually curled up in the crook of my legs). But she can also be totally crazy sometimes, just like Lucille Ball. :)

  • I love the story behind keeping Izzy'z name! :)

    My parents adopted their dog when he was 3 years old. He came with the name Zip. All of us soon realized why he was called this. He loves to play fetch...but he can't for long because he sprints and zips around to get the ball. He is a very zippy character. :)

  • Laura and Bri! I love both of those names Frisket and Zip....and how perfect were those names! Thanks for sharing! Isn't that fun!

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