What’s in a Name? Part I

April 6, 2012  

We asked our Facebook fans, ‘Does your dog have an unusual or unique name? How did you pick your dog’s name?’

We found your answers to be sweet, hilarious, poignant and insightful. Thanks everyone for sharing, stay tuned for part two next week.
(all photos, except Sarge and Junior, by Melissa Lipani)

Ryder Dye Wills cause he is by my side no matter what!

~ Stacie Crain Wills

We named our pittie Lucy Maud after my favorite childhood author, L.M. Montgomery. We call her Lucy and Loohoo but only call her Lucy Maud really when she isn’t listening .

~ Bethany DeMark Zimpel

Our two dogs were named by my husband, who is a diehard deadhead. We have Scarlet Begonias and Loose Lucy!

~ Stephanie Sorensen

My retriever mix is Chomsky, after Noam Chomsky. My husband named her. However, she puts everything in her mouth so she usually gets called Chompy.

~ Karina MacIntosh

Lola, sometimes Lola Love, for The Kinks song.

~ Kate Barrow

My dog does…her name is The Divine Miss Pinky LaRue. The LaRue is because she has one ear that flops over and makes her look like she is wearing a beret – very French. The Pinky is because on the way home from the shelter, Pink was playing in the CD player and she seemed to like it – I was singing, she was smiling and licking and wiggling. By the way, she is a Shepherd mix, but we love all you do for the pibbles out there.

~ Diana Kruger

Lill is short for Lilliput, because she is on the petite side, but at home we call her The Sausage, because she lies in the sun, looking like a little sausage cooking in the sun.

~ Nina Stively

My pug is named Begbie. When I first adopted him, he was absolutely crazy. There’s a nutty character in the book/film Trainspotting named Francis Begbie.

~ Micaela Logan

My dog’s name is Jekyll because he underwent a huge and fantastical change. (He was found on the street weighing 33 pounds and he is now 55+.)

~ Laura Levin

Our dog’s name is Cromulent! It’s from the Simpson’s.

~ Alison Attebery

Nacho Dog is one of my dog’s names that is very unique! Nacho was supposed to stay with us for only five days until his foster home was ready. He never left, I fell in LOVE with him immediately. He was a scared, rescued bait dog covered with scars. He arrived with the name Nacho and I loved it from the start! We sing Nacho Nacho Dog instead of Macho Macho Man….. And of course there is the fun word play of “That’s Nacho Dog, Yes that is my DOG!” Like the old Nacho cheese jokes of the 80s.

~ Buckey Todd Brown

We have Dixie Lee, because we are southern, but her nickname is “JugHead” because she is so goofy!

~ Terri Cox

I have two adopted black dogs with gold collars. The oldest is Brees (after Drew Brees) and the youngest is Deuce (after Deuce McCallister, a former Saint).

~ Deborah Mitchell

Stryker got his name seven years ago because you never knew where he would pop up. When he did, he would touch his nose to you…hence Stryker…like a snake.

~ Helen Clary

When my dog was taken into the shelter, the shelter coordinator said she was in a “food phase” that week. She named one dog Cheddar and another one Cherrio, etc. She named ours Broccoli but then shortened it to Brock. So when we adopted him, we just kept that name. Every so often when we want him to do something or if he’s being “bad”…we call him by his full name “Broccoli Sklencar, you get out of those bushes right now!”

~ Nancy S. Racnelks

People sometimes laugh when they ask my pit’s name and I answer Prince, but I had another named King and when I lost him and finally got another dog he had big paw prints to fill.

~ Ryan Brunette


Our home includes Martha Washington, Mary Todd Lincoln, and Nancy Reagan. Someday we’ll adopt a Democrat to even things out. Our dog Junior was named after the late Sarge Wolf-Stringer…as in Sarge, Jr. (photo above)

~ Sarge Wolf-Stringer

We have Spazz Muppet and Pyscho Sue (also known as Axl Rose, Chaos and Tehya) my old Rottie cross was called Dinky Dog.

~ Fiona Reid

We named our Brittany Bailey Rae cause she is such a happy dog and that sounded like a happy name.

~ Jacqueline Suzanne Mays

Ralph Lauren, for one of my favorite designers. His mom’s name is Lady Chanel and his dad is Coco Chanel so thought to keep it in a designer family. I just call him Ralphy and when he’s in trouble, Ralph Lauren.

~ SallyandDennis Alves-Nihill

Our black and white AmStaff mix is St. Paddy Cakes. We got her two years ago form the SPCA. They used her in a St. Patrick’s Day promo video so she had green paws. So St. Paddy was fitting then used a play on words – Paddy Cakes – and combined the two.

~ Annie Goldman

My dog is Jack Daniel… named after the only man I’ll ever trust. Mr. Jack Daniel and his whiskey. My husband calls him Princess Buttercup. He’s a little bit of a scaredy-cat.

~ Stephanie Roynestad Fullerr

We named our pit “Jones” just because we liked the sound of it, and it suited him. His 10-lb. Chi-JRT buddy showed up with a name – “Honey” – which, because of her crazy behavior, my husband changed to “the Honey Badger.” Now the twosome is “Jonesy and the Badger.”

~ Liz Wickham

Our Basset Adelaide has the nickname Bugga for a few reasons. We started with Addie Bug (lady bug) and then she ate a bunch of crawfish husks (mudbugs) and started emitting the smell of crawfish, thankfully for a short period of time. And last but not least, she has to go around bugging everyone and putting her nose into their business, resulting in the name Bugga.

~ Patty Tink

Let’s see, our youngest pittie is named Shatheed. I sat for hours calling out names for him and he did not respond. It was getting hot and we both were getting aggravated so I called him a sh*ithead (and he came straight to me. So instead of calling him Sh*thead we call him Shatheed (pronounced, sha theed).

~ Shellena Cobb

One of mine is named Mildred Huble after a character in a little known British Halloween movie, but we call her Millie or MiMi (we only use her full name when she is being really stubborn!)

~ Laura Elizabeth

We named our pittie mix Turk (after the character on Scrubs), but we soon started referring to him as “Turkey” because he was such a goof.

~ Our Waldo Bungie

Seems we can’t escape Walt Disney as our three pit bulls are named Jasmine, Baloo and Hercules and our mutt is named Diesel only one who stands out is our GSP named Reverdy Munson after my uncle.

~ Tara Lisa

Justice got his name because his adopted mother’s name was Liberty. We chose that name because she was born deaf on the 4th of July, the breeder wanted to cull her but was “convinced” that my family should have her, gratis, instead. She had the right to Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness which she found and helped me obtain for 10 and a half years. As an aside, she couldn’t hear but she listened better than any other dog I’ve met to this day, especially Justice. LOL!

~ Kyle Brown

BIG – big furry and at 100 lbs. he showed up as a stray. For a long time I tried to find his owner, referring to him only as “that big dog” in the back yard because once you give them a name… after two months I had him vetted and called him mine – a fan of Sex and the City he became BIG! That was eight years ago.

~ Peggy Funnell


Our pittie is Cotton… My husband and I do traditional anniversary gifts and we adopted him as our two-year gift to each other and year two is cotton. It is very fitting… He loves to chew on socks…ha!

~ Tara Matthews Mitchell

I have Tikka, my pointer, can’t remember why I chose the name, just liked it. My staffy’s name is Bullet. His name at the shelter was Capone…but I didn’t like the mafia name for a pitty type dog, so being the dimwit that I am, I called him Bullet. We also have a cat that I named 30lbs. of Stooopid. I did name my mother’s bulldog Melba Toast though. She also named her Corgi Chuckles of Delight.

~ Meira Frankl

Our second dog is Luca (wasn’t as common when we named her that.) We already had Vader, and wanted to keep with the star wars theme. My husband wanted to name her Luke, even though she’s a girl. I wanted to name her Leia, but he didn’t like it. So we combined Luke and Leia and came up with Luca. Funny thing is I didn’t want to name her Luke because it was a boy’s name, only after the fact did I find out Luca is also a boy’s name.

~ Nicole Pelkey

His name isn’t very unique (Bubba) but it’s the nicknames that make it so; Bubbafat, Bubbaloo, The Bubster, Boobookachoo, Bullpug, Baubbles, Bo Bo the Clown, Baaa Baaa, Bubba Gump, Bubba Blue etc. I think he hardly gets called by his given name! He also was named Bubba after Bubba Blue from Forest Gump, they share that signature pouty lip!

~ Hali Henson

I have a red nose and American black mix, her name is Zeeza. She was named after a character from a movie. I just thought the name was good for her. She is curious just like the girl in the movie.

~ Corkey B Peeples

Our dogs name is Kirra….it is Scottish for dark lady because she’s a blue bully!

~ Eliza- Emily

We have two for our Chihuahua /Boston terrier mix… Ninny Poo and Nayna Wayna… Don’t ask me how we came up with them. Our older pitty, Big Red, his pet name is Monstro, cause he’s huge , our other pitty, Maggie, we call her Sissy. That’s my husband’s pet name for her.

~ Jeannie Toth Savidge

She was a red nose pit bull so we were thinking either Rosie or Ruby. My daughter decided that she looked more like a Rosie, so that’s her name. We gave her the middle name of Grace in the hope that she’d grow into that. However, at 3 years old she’s still a rollicking goofball, so maybe we should have named her Rosie Goof instead of Rosie Grace.

~ Cathy Becker Gonzalez

The shelter named my pit bull Haley, so I kept it. Had a Dalmatian I named Typographical Error – Typo for short.

~ Elizabeth Diem

My pup’s name is Polka. I named her after the perfectly circular spot on the back of her head, and all of the super-secret hidden polka dots she has on her tummy.

~ Kayla Bostic

Bindi Sue. We got our female pit bull the week Steve Irwin died. Since Steve didn’t seem to work as her name we decided to name her after his pit bull mix Bindi Sue.

~ Julie Jordan

My wife and I met in a carnival. She worked in food and I as a ride foreman and truck driver. The rides are put together using pins called “R-keys”. We are no longer with the show, but our dog R-key keeps us together and running smoothly!

~ Eric Lawson

I call her Lady Mel Mel (she’s very Gaga- esque)

~ Maureen Welsh

I named my pibble mix Bowser because King Koopa sounded too silly. SuzieQ is his ’lil Boston terrier sister.

~ Kristin Morris

My long haired black and white Chihuahua is named Viggo , for two reasons. First, is he has a perfect “V” in the middle of his back and second after Viggo Mortenson, of course one of my favorite actors. But what makes his name even more unique is his AKC name is “Viggo Vhere Ve Vant To Go ” ! I think it is the perfect name for him because he loves to travel!

~ Sha Pike

ECHO – white APBT deaf.

~ Sue Trudeau


Luna, after Luna Lovegood and because her breeder was Moongate Goldens.

~ Sara E. James

We have Mama (the mama of mine), Sexy, Fatty, Mr. Krunk, Lil Mama(just like her mama) and Sweepy-(but we call him Dew)

~ Charla Morin

My rescued wiener dog is named Shecky. If you’re a Kevin Smith fan you already know. We couldn’t help ourselves.

~ Cptkitten Nutz

My dog’s name is Oy, from Stephen Kings Dark Tower series

~ Joe Kozlosky

We live off of Lance Road and a homeless abandoned and abused dog was wandering the woods here for months, no one could get him. Finally I got him in a friendly trap , the animal shelter came to get the pit bull mix, they said, what is his name? (how would I know? I doubt he had one.) so I said, his name is Lance, Sir Lancelot, because he likes Lance road a lot. Needless to say I adopted that dog Lance, Sir Lancelot, from the shelter —–and he lived with me for 12 fine years passing away this past November. And he never left Lance road again…he was a prince of a dog.

~ Debra Reece Simons

We named the pups by their characteristics when they were first born, not expecting to keep them…

~ Charla Morin

Abbygel….when she was first rescued her name was Angel, but my doggy niece is already named Angel and it would be too confusing with two Angels in the family and I liked the name Abby, so we just started calling her Abbygel .

~ Kari Cross-Thetford

We named our rescue pit Barley because my fiancé likes to brew beer.

~ Kaitlin Mary

‎”Killer” short for killer beast enheimer!!! Fifteen pound rat terrier/Chihuahua??

~ Lorna Hagist

Our terrier mix’s name is Tofurky. It is actually the name he was given by the animal shelter because he was picked up a few days before Thanksgiving. We kept it because it fits him really well. Our Chihuahua’s name is Mooshoo for the Chinese food Mushu, we named her that because her first owner was Chinese and she didn’t answer to the name she came with. We sometimes call her Mooshoo Chicken.

~ Jennifer Nadler

My dog is name King Kong …. named by my little 5-year-old nephew at the time.

~ Jendayi St. Juste

Our chocolate lab is Adidas. He is the fourth in a line of dogs named after athletic shoes, in honor of my husband’s love of running and sports. The first three were Nike, Reebok, and Swoosh!

~ Debbie Starr Branfield

My collie/sharpei is Yoda because he has pointy sideways ears and the force is strong in him.

~ Marcia End Bsl Chandler

My pit mix is named Priya, after a character from Dollhouse. My rottie mix is Nixxie. It was once short for Phoenix but she never responded to that so now she’s Nixxie Nix.

~ Kristy Lynch

Our male Rottie is nicknamed “Beaky Boy,” because our daughter said that his head was pointed and, due to his major overbite, his muzzle looked like a beak. Our little Rottie female is Roxie Longtail, as she has a long tail. We also call her “Tail,” “Monkey Tail,” “Twinkle Toes,” “Pirhana” and “Moray Eel” because she inhales her food and is done before the bowls are put down for our other two. She is also called “Jaws” when she grabs food from our fingers in spite of being told “gentle.” All of our dogs have numerous nicknames, and we love all of our dogs.

~ Jude Gagner


My pit/Husky is named Sussudio (a Phil Collins song). I had always said if I ever got a female I would name her that. My Basset is named Dante’ after a character in the movie “Clerks” and my pit Bbull is Diesel, just because he is like a diesel locomotive…..also called Diesel Weasel because, he can be that at times too.

~ Sharon Wolfe

My pit’s name is Rucca after the Sublime song “Waiting for my Ruca” which is slang for girlfriend.

~ Tara Labenberg

My husband and I are both big craft beer fans. Our first pittie is named Porter. When we adopted our second, we wanted to keep the theme and went with Arcadia, which is a favorite brewery.

~ Amy Rever-Oberle

My baby’s name is Brady because in Gaelic it means broad chested and meadow .. And when he was a puppy he had this huge chest !!!

~ Isabella Kocienski

I’ve got Grendel (just showed up in my driveway one day),Fubar (he’s not very pretty lol), Valentina (got her on valentine’s day), Iluna (my pretty pitty),Tater (or potater,tater tot when he was little), Trubl(and she is), Lunchmeat (he LUVS bread), Angelo (his intake date at the shelter was the same day my Angel luv passed, so he got named after her), then there is Minion (also called mini) and her sister Gingi-bra t(so very deserving of the brat part.)

~ Cassandra Rogers

My pittie angel Ziero got his name from me watching “A Nightmare Before Christmas”, I named him after the ghost dog “Zero”. I thought adding the “i” would make his name more unique.

~ Chad Huyck

My dog’s real name is Destiny, however no one calls her that. I have been calling her Piggy Lou for as long as I can remember and that is pretty much what everyone calls her. I have no clue where the name came from but it stuck. She also goes by piggy face, pig, Lou, pugga Lou and The pig named Lou.

~ Rachel Weiss

Elwood. What else would you name a face like that?

~ Karen Lee Hale

We named out first standard poodle Babayaga for the Russian witch who ate children and lived on a house standing on chicken feet. Baba was a truly amazing dog and even though she’s been gone for close to a decade, not a day goes by when we don’t think about her and thank her for everything she taught us.

~ Kelsey Mac

My 98 lb. pit is named Magnum. He was named after the gun, because I love going to the shooting range and he is the “protector” of my lap. When I get more dogs (no matter what breed), their names are going be Smith, Wesson and Barretta.

~ Beverly Ross

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