Dog Names

Cute, funny, cool, weird, adorable dog names from A to Z! Click on a letter to see all the names for that letter of the alphabet.

Pet names for dogs from A to Z:

How You Find the Perfect Name for Your Dog!

Dog name, cat name - does it really matter? Most of the time, you pick a name that reflects the character or appearance of your pet. Like its color or markings on its paws and/or nose.

And it makes a big difference if you have a dog or another kind of pet. Dogs must be able to answer to their names and to commands - unlike guinea pigs and hamsters. There are three rules of thumb:

1. “Hard” Letters

Dogs answer much better to names with “hard”, “sharp” sounds at the beginning, like s, sh, ch, k. Names with long sounds (vowels) at the end, like “a”, “e”, “i”, “o” or “u”, also work well. Like these names: Charlie, Simba or Timmy.

2. Not Similar to a Command

Dogs don’t recognize the words you use in a command, they react to how they sound. Even if we don’t notice it, we often say words unclearly (like when we’re in a hurry). If its name sounds like a command, the dog will get needlessly confused.

Example:
So the name Sprout isn’t a good idea for a dog, as it sounds too much like “out” - and your dog will think it’s being sent out. If you want to call your dog Rover but then you tell him to “roll over”, you might end up with a dog that rolls over when you call him. There may also be times when you want your dog’s attention but don’t want it to come to you. But if your dog is called Tom, he might hear “come” and that could of course lead to some problems.

3. Two Syllables

Most dog trainers recommend choosing a name with two syllables. They’re much easier to differentiate from commands. Most commands are just one syllable (“sit”, “stay” etc). Three or four syllables are even harder. Not just for the dog. Imagine calling through the park: “Theodore Threadbare Thirstington the Third, come back here!”.

These tips aren’t “musts”, just recommendations. If you want to give your dog an unusual name, then just go for it. But it is worth properly thinking about it and not changing it constantly. Changing an older dog’s name especially isn’t a good idea. But if you really don’t like its name, there is a trick: try to find a name that sounds very similar. “Mollie” could become “Polly” (say them out loud and you’ll know what we mean). The most important thing is to keep the vowels as similar as possible (“a”, “e”, “i”, “o”, “u”). Dogs listen to vowels especially well.

Test the Name!

Thank about going for a walk and meeting other people. Especially if you’re letting your dog run around off the lead, you’ll have to shout its name out loud. If you called your dog “Fleabag” as a puppy, it might not be so nice shouting it out loud for the whole park to hear. Consider a few names first and test them out (but not too many, or you’ll confuse your new four legged friend). Go with what feels right. How does it feel when you call the name? Could you call it over and over again?

Dog names Dog names - Photo: Brook Robinson/Shutterstock