The 20 Most Popular Dog Names of 2023 · The Wildest

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The 20 Most Popular Dog Names of 2023

You may be running into a bunch of Kelces at the dog park.

by Sean Zucker
November 22, 2023
Travis Kelce with two dogs
Courtesy of @tkelce

Wow, 2023, what a year for us all. Taylor Swift started dating Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce, The Eras Tour became one of the most significant and successful tours of all time, and Tay officially joined the billionaire club. Of course, there were some non-Swift-related events, but truthfully those were mostly a blur. Like, I think England had some kind of coronation or something. Regardless, as Rover releases its annual report of the most popular dog names in America, it’s clear most of pet parents have their priorities straight.

Not only was Taylor one of the most common musician-inspired names, but Swifty is trending up 37 percent in popularity from last year. Kelce is also the top-trending name for all pups, up 135 percent from 2022. This is in addition to clear Swift nods including Cardigan, August, Betty, Karma, and Midnight all seeing positive naming upticks. Naturally, there are a few more major takeaways from the 2023 report for dog parents who have other interests and/or a life. 

First, Americans continue to show their love and support for all things edible. Food-inspired names, including Breadcrumb, Eggsy Benedict, Bubble Gum, and Everything Bagel appeared in Rover’s database for the first time. In what was admittedly a surprise, Green Bean was the most popular food-related name overall. This was followed by Cheerios and S’more, which align much closer to my understanding of average Americans and our health habits — evidenced further by the name Beer being more common than all three.

Even a good chunk of the trending TV-inspired names were in honor of the medium’s cooks and bakers. Several Top Chef-driven denominations were doled out, led by Padma trending upwards 197 percent, clearly as a tribute to host Padma Lakshmi, who recently retired from the role after nearly two decades. Similarly, the name Kish appeared for the first time as a nod to new host Kristen Kish, while dogs named after Top Chef judge Gail increased by 24 percent.

In terms of narrative television, The Bear trended nearly 200 percent in popularity following our clear interest in watching Jeremy Allen White do anything. It’s why his character's name, Carmy, is trending 157 percent, followed by other nods like Marcus, Neil, Claire, and Sugar.

And because the only thing this country loves more than eating is paying corporations to do so, brand names like Pop Tart and Gogurt emerged for the first time as well. But those two may also represent a statewide nostalgia for the 90s that pet parents appear to be exercising with their pups. Leonardo Dogcaprio, Shania Twain, and Freddie Prince all appeared for the first time to pay homage to a few of the decade’s icons. That’s before Alanis, for Alanis Morissette, which saw a staggering 547 percent increase, along with other 90s stars such as Halle Berry and Winona, for Winona Ryder, trending upwards. Plus, Rover’s data proves that nostalgia for the era is stronger than support for the Writer’s Union, as dogs named Drew Barrymore were up almost 300 percent.

Now, before we round up the most popular dog names across all categories, there is one honorable mention I believe deserves some attention. According to the Rover’s report, there is a pup out there roaming the streets and taking treats named Linkin Bark. Incredible, zero notes. 

Below, the top male and female dog names of 2023.

Top 10 male dog names

 1. Charlie

Not unlike Washington recently sneaking into the college football top four, there was a major shake-up this year atop the male dog ranks. Charlie took the number-one spot after Max held it for the past 10 years.

2. Max

All dynasties eventually end, look no further than the 2023 New England Patriots as proof. As for what caused Max to drop off after a decade of dominance, I’m less sure. But boy does that HBO rebrand continue to look rough.

3. Cooper

I assume this is largely inspired by America’s most attractive Oscar-nominated director because the Maestro hype is real.

4. Milo

I’m not sure of the origins of Milo as a dog name, but it’s persisted for generations without feeling trite.  

5. Buddy

A timeless classic that aptly describes the human-dog relationship.  

6. Teddy

Don’t think I’ve ever met a Teddy who didn’t have some level of Golden Retriever energy, so this tracks. 

7. Rocky

Of course, people are still naming their dogs after Rocky Balboa. Stallone’s boxer represents so many things we love about our pets: He’s loyal, inspires us to exercise more, and always holds our attention despite never knowing what he’s saying.

8. Bear

Whether you’re tuning in for the deliciously cinematic shots of food being served or Jeremy Allen White’s biceps, The Bear is clearly a dog-parent favorite. 

9. Leo

As previously mentioned, the 90s are back and so too are its heartthrobs. Years later, people still love Leonardo DiCaprio even if he’s allergic to spending time with anyone who lived through the decade.

10. Duke

You may think this is simply in reference to the hugely influential pianist and composer Duke Ellington, but I think I know the real jazz icon dog parents are honoring here.

Top 10 female dog names

1. Luna

For the second year in a row, Luna was the most popular female dog name. Congrats to all the Lunas out there.

2. Bella

Just like last year, Bella was the runner-up. That being said, an impending Twilight will likely shift this placement in the near future. Whether that’s to the top spot or closer to the 100th is TBD.

3. Daisy

Like a solid trench coat, dogs named Daisy are always in style and usually beige.

4. Lucy

While 2023 could easily be viewed as the year of Barbie, it’s another female icon with her roots in the 50s that makes a top-five appearance in dog names.

5. Lily

Apparently, dog parents love nothing more than four letter, two symbol names that start with L. As three of the top five follow this trend, look for Lana to make an appearance in 2024 (especially if enough Too Hot to Handle fans adopt dogs).

6. Lola

Make that four out of the top six.

7. Zoe

Maybe number seven sharing a name with the actress who portrays Catwoman is a positive sign toward peace between eternally clashing dog and cat parents.

8. Sadie

Sometimes it’s best not to get too cute with pet naming. Sadie’s a classic dog moniker for a reason.

9. Stella

I’m resisting the urge to boast about The Grateful Dead’s “Stella Blue” here to appear as a more tolerable person.

10. Bailey

I have always noticed a large crossover between dog parents and Baileys Irish Cream drinkers — at least according to the small sample size

Sean Zucker

Sean Zucker

Sean Zucker is a writer whose work has been featured in Points In Case, The Daily Drunk, Posty, and WellWell. He has an adopted Pit Bull named Banshee whose work has been featured on the kitchen floor and whose behavioral issues rival his own.

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