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The Case Against Basic Dog Names

Inspo for picking one that pops.

by Casey Gueren
March 31, 2021
cute small terrier sitting in grass

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Fauci. Panda. ’Rona. See a pattern here? Dog names run the gamut from old-school classics to on-trend homages. No nod is off the table — apparently not even pandemics. But neither end of the spectrum is super original and your pup is anything but basic. Below are some prompts to inspire a fitting moniker. You’ll thank us when you holler it and turn heads at the dog park.

Eats and drinks

Are you a discerning foodie or a street meat kind of person? Is swirling a full-bodied red or swilling an aged whisky more your speed? @TunaMeltsMyHeart is already taken but if any of the following fare makes your mouth water, you might be onto something. In no particular order...

  1. Taco

  2. Sushi

  3. Lentil

  4. Mochi

  5. Tofu

  6. Pickle

  7. Kimchi 

  8. Guinness

  9. Martini

  10. Jameson

Nutrition Calculator

If we could give our pets infinite treats, we would. But this tool will tell you the right amount to feed your friend.

Geography

Would you describe yourself as nostalgic, saving mementos from places you’ve been, or are you more of a jet-setter, dreaming of far-flung lands?

  1. Jersey 

  2. Maui

  3. Philly 

  4. Aspen

  5. Brooklyn

  6. Austin

  7. Cairo

  8. Hudson

  9. Roosevelt 

  10. Sydney 

Pop-culture references

They say you should never meet your heroes, but what better way to pay homage to a teen idol than by bestowing their name upon your new favorite person in the world (that would be your dog)? Whether basketball or Bridgerton is more your jam, the allusions are endless.

  1. Bowie

  2. Maisel

  3. Arya

  4. Harry

  5. Kobe

  6. Buffy

  7. Dobby 

  8. Mazzy

  9. Lizzo

  10. Regé

Your dog’s own traits

Looks may not matter but let’s be real, they do give you material to work with when pondering a name. Is your dog a bite-sized Chiweenie or a Herculean hound? Do they have dreamy doe eyes or outsize ears (that they hopefully won’t grow into)?

  1. Shorty 

  2. Bambi 

  3. Wolf 

  4. Yoda

  5. Socks 

  6. Moose

  7. Beasty

  8. Blondie

  9. Jet

  10. Biggy

Whatever moniker you settle on, your dog is sure to end up perfectly suited for. So the only thing left to consider, obviously, is a witty Instagram handle.

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Casey Gueren

Casey Gueren is a writer, editor, and content strategist. You can find her work at SELF, BuzzFeed, Women's Health, Cosmopolitan, and others.