Handling Handles

It’s all in what you call your dog- studies show that if you name your dog ‘fang’ or ‘Killer’ they’ll act like it!  So, think carefully when naming your new agility buddy.

For instance, don’t do what I did!  I have three pets; Quick, Impulse, and Nova.   Quick is what his name says- Quick to learn, move, and obey.  Impulse is a chained windstorm with no control. Nova means  literally ‘no go’.  Guess what? She doesn’t go! She’s a wonderful and sweet dog, and I love her but she can occasionally stick in the mud.  The other moral in this story is don’t name a dog with ‘no’ in the name.  They’ll think ‘no’ IS their name, and ignore it.  Nova thinks her name is Nova-no.

Think of a name you can shout and not sound stupid, something you can shout and not mix up, not something that can be misheard to something else and be embarrassing. Don’t name the dog something that can be mistaken for a command (which means ‘Rum’ might not be the best name ever, even though it’s a wonderful name otherwise), and something you like and fits your dog.

Dogs deserve unique names that fit them- and be careful that you don’t choose a name that they’ll learn to fit.  What’s your dogs name? Why?

37 Comments on “Handling Handles

  1. Our dog naming convention keys off of our ancestry of Scottish, Irish and English. Each dog carries the kennel name followed by ancestry and then call name. We currently have 3 labs, Scottish Brodie, English Tucker and Irish Logan.

  2. I have three dogs. The first one is a black lab female named Skeeter Too. She was named after a black lab, Skeeter, who got her name from a charactor on “Momma’s Place”. The second is a female Weimaraner named “Ziva” after a charactor on the show “NCSI”. The third is a new female chocolate lab puppy I named “Deep Run’s Qwick Chocolate” call name Qwick. She is to be my next agility dog and I want her to be fast.

  3. When I was a kid my grandad told me to name my dogs with one sylable names. The dog can recognize that easier and it is quicker to say. No mix up. D is my dogs name. He fits the name and it has had no bad effects on him….. D DSD CGC CD RE. DSD is Diabbtic Service Dog… A dog is not influnced by a NAME……….. COME ON………..WHO WROTE THIS……

  4. Dog names comment: I adopt my dogs from various terrier rescue organizations. Currently I have a female Welsh I named Indie. She came from Indiana. Also have an Irish. He came with the name Ruairi. He responds well to his name so I didn’t change it.

  5. i’ve got a tervuren named ch. timberwind’s true sky chaser, or chase/chaser for a call name. it’s a short, easy name and being a herding dog, he’s obviously going to chase things (whether i want him to or not. it’s certainly not a command i would ever use, nor does it sound like one. he lives up to his name regularly, and the cats are not happy about it

  6. I have 2 sheltie/poms. They are both rescues (not from the same litter). Cheyenne looks like a little fox. Her previous owner, who had become ill, had already named her. She was 2 years old and we didn’t change her name. It seemed to fit anyway.
    Just 6 months ago we adopted our second puppy from our local animal shelter. Everyone remarks on her unusual coloring. She looks like a very tiny border collie. The shelter called her Thelma, which is a fine name, but it certainly didn’t fit this “prissy little lady.” We decided to call her Fancy. She certainly thinks she’s all that. She is only 11 months old, but already loves agility like Cheyenne. She is not afraid of anything and she is very independent.

  7. Our 3-year-old Sheltie was born on June 14…Flag Day!Since he is a blue merle I thought of naming him “Frosty”.
    My teen-age granddaughter said,”Nanny that is too generic. Give him a different name like ‘Bartleby’ ”
    So his official name is Star-Spangled Bartleby. But we call him Barty. He is spunky and sometimes naughty and Barty is a perfect name for him!

  8. Derby came with his name and lives up to it in his agility speed! Bindi came with hers too (although we call her Bee). But Jerzy originally had the name of Louise…..she was part of a mom/daugther household Thelma/Louise. She was found in Georgia and I am of polish descent so her name is the closest Polish translation to Georgia that I could find.

  9. We have 3 dogs. Our pointer is named Zosha, after my grandmother, but we usually just call her Sophie. I really just like the name Zosha. Her name means wisdom and understanding, and that is pretty true to her nature.

    We also have a pitbull mix named Bruno. His name was Marvin at the shelter, but my daughter’s supervisor at work was named that, so she didn’t like it. Marvin suited him as a puppy, but now that he is a big boy, the name Bruno is far more appropriate. He is a big, clumsy, loyal, and protective lug of a dog. His middle name is James, as in, “Bruno James, play nice with your sister.” I only discover their middle names when they are bad.

    Our last dog is a little Chihuahua mix named Luna. she is black with giant bat ears, so we named her after the kid’s book Stella Luna about a bat. Her middle name is Marie, as in “Luna Marie, bad pee in the house.”

  10. My oldest dog is Daisy–3 weeks from being 14 years old. She comes from a Golden Retriever mother and a “fence-jumper” dad (a black lab was suspected). She has the lines and fur of a golden, but she is chocolate brown with a white blaze and some white on each paw. I wanted to name her something that would match her color, but the only thing I could think of was Rosy. My husband refuted that idea, but when I quickly countered with Daisy, he agreed. I started her in agility at 6 years and she tried, but didn’t love the sport–just loved being with me. We had fun until real life took over and we couldn’t participate any longer.

    Muffin is a 1-year-old poodle mix. Because she is apricot, I wanted to name her Nutmeg. My husband didn’t really like that name, but it didn’t matter because neither did the new puppy. I made a huge list of names and tried most of them out on her. She ignored me. After three days I happened to try Muffin–and she came! She picked her own name. It really fits her because she is a real sweety, even though she can’t control her liquor (I mean licker). She is doing well in her agility training, but still too young to be dependable. We hope to start trials in November.

  11. I like short call names that start with a hard sound…I think it works better when giving commands, especially at a distance. And I like their registered name to “agree” with their call name. We have 6 dogs, but some are rescues that came with names already. Of our two “planned” pups, Jack is the Scottie–a nice short sharp name. His registered name is Captain Jack Sparrow, which I always tell people I selected because it was as close as I would ever come to sleeping with Johnny Depp.
    Latest puppy, a PWD, is Dega, Rough Seas’ Talladega Storm. Puppy needed kennel name and dad’s call name (Stormy)included in his registered name–he’s a puppy from a frozen semen breeding I have waited years to get, so was happy to “recognize” his dad that way. We really struggled, though, with coming up with the full name and call name. Came up with a couple we thought we liked, but for various reasons had to eliminate. I was en route bringing the puppy home and talking with my husband on the phone at a potty stop, when he asked what the puppy’s “birth order” was. “He was puppy number 3,” I told him and then immediately thought, “Oh No, he’s going to want to name the puppy Dale Earnhart!!!” Instead, when I got home, he had thought of Talladega Storm, Talladega being the track where Dale dominated (and this puppy was the “dominator” in his litter). The call name Dega fit my prerequisites, puppy seemed to like it and answer to it, so it was decided

  12. My dog is named Aussie. I named her Aussie since the story of crossing Labs with Poodles states that it was first done in Australia. I think people are confused when they hear her name. Her official name is Awesome Aussie. I never dreamed of trying to do agility when I gave her that name but someday I hope she lives up to it.

  13. My Aussie’s name is Spark and the name fits him. I wanted a short name for agility and waited for a couple of weeks after I got him to name him. I watched how he played and went after toys and his training. He is very focused and intense in play but extremely loving to people.

  14. My sheltie is William of the Fair Isle. We call him WILLIAM…no informal nicknames for a very serious dog dressed in a proper black and white suit! I gave him the name when I got him as a nine-week-old puppy. I wanted something appropriately Scottish and had considered Walter (for Sir Walter Scott) and Harold (last of the Saxon kings) who actually landed on the Shetland Islands (this was in the 11th century, before he was defeated by the Norman, William the Conquerer) and was hailed as a hero, since they were also of Saxon blood.) I ended up going with William (for William Wallace, NOT William the Conquerer) because, I like the name William better than the name Harold.
    Please forgive the history lesson. I studied English and History in college and taught those subjects for a while. Can’t get out of the habit…

  15. A friend had a wonderful little Cairn Terrier she had to place because she had MS and Lupus and was no longer physically able to take care for her pup. My husband and I already had two C.T.’s, which was a full house to him. When I agreed to take my friend’s pup, my husband was out of town. I called the Cairn Terrier, Andy, the name of my husband’s childhood dog. Well to make a long story short, he is the best little dog ever. He has never had an accident in our house and is the sweetest little dog ever. Of course, he won my husband’s heart. I like to think the name may have helped.

  16. Although my dogs are from the USA- I like to name them with “real” names from their country of orgin. My Skyes had Scottish Celtic names, and my Corgis have Welsh names- Teagan (Tee for short!) and Brenin Llwyd (Greyhaired King- Bren for short).

  17. I named my dog Menina – little girl in Portuguese (I lived in Brazil for four years). We shortened it to NINA and it fits her perfectly – silver, miniature poodle.

  18. All our dogs are mixed breeds. Our oldest dog (terrier mix) that was rescued from the streets we named Pal. He was around 8 years old when we found him (couldn’t locate an owner). Because of his badly injured feet we decided not to take him to the shelter.

    We named our middle dog Tippy (looks like a black Kelpie) because the tips of her toes are white (she is all black with a few splashes of white on her chest). When I call her I usually shorten her name to Tip which is easy to say and easy to remember. Short and sweet like her. I’m doing nosework with her now, but will probably start her in agility classes once it cools down later on. She was in a puppy agility class several years ago but was so over the top and wild with enthusiasm that I decided to wait until she matured a bit more and calmed down so I could control her on the course. She loved to run through her obstacles and then run over to a dog in another part of the field to say, “Hi, I finished my obstacles, wanna play now?”

    Our third dog we named Jeep. Her name at the shelter was Jeopardy. We didn’t think that was a positive name, so we changed it to Jeep after the character from the Popeye comic books. It’s another short easy name to say and remember. And it has a different sound that Tippy.

  19. My first Border Collie is named
    Chaney and her registered name is Angelee’s Master of Disguise. Everyone thinks that she is named after Vice President Chaney, but she is named after Lon Chaney who played the first Phantom of the Opera (the first master of disguise).
    Our second Border is named Kaylee which is a combination of Kathy and Lee, my breeders name combined with her son’s name. We also have a third border named Lacey whom I named because I thought that the white marking up her back legs made her look like she was trimmed in lace and also thought she would be very feminine which she isn’t
    Our fourth border is named Gem. Her registered name is Angelee’s Sweet Repeat. Her coloring is very similar to Chaney’s thus the sweet repeat. Gem fits her perfectly because she sure is a Gem.

  20. I have “Beefcake” my 12.5 year old Rottweiler named after Cartman on Southpark when he was not fat he was a beefcake!

    I have “Bumpus” a Rottweiler named from The Christmas stories neighbors.

    “Babbette” my Boxer Mix named after Radar O’Reilly’s guinea pig

    Oscar and Grover a Std. Poodle and a Bearded Collie from the muppets.

    My cats Herman from the Munsters and “Buford T. Pusser walking small” from the sheriff in the movie Walking Tall.
    Those are my fur babies!

  21. A Maltese, named Shorty. I have to give credit to my niece for that one. But it’s cute, kinda hip(hop) -although he is a boy and it’s generally a girl’s nickname. Alot of people get a chuckle out of it. He too is kinda cool, like his name. My second dog, I let my husband name, so they could bond. He named him Geoffrey, like Geoffrey Giraffe – cuz he likes to stretch his neck in the morning. Not the coolest pet name in our family- but it worked like a charm he’s a daddy’s boy, and my husband adores him.

  22. My JRT is named “WayToGo” (Kennel Name) Duet’s Spring Vision

    How did she get her name: What a story which begins at the whelping. Duet is the Dam’s name, Spring’s is the female bitch that nursed her because her Mom could not and Vision is her name because thru complications at birth, it was highly unlikely she would have any vision. Anyway, here is her story.

    Vision was behind a stillborn. The Vet was able to get the stillborn out but there was still another one which she could not whelp. So my Vet did an emergency C section. At this time all of us thought there would only be another stillborn but she showed us. We were wrong. She had a heartbeat but was not breathing. The other Vet Tech and myself took turns giving mouth to mouth and finally 20 minutes later she took a breath and started squirming out of my hands. The Dam, Duet developed an infection from the stillborn and her sister, Spring who had a litter 10 days earlier, nursed Vision along with her pups since Duet was unable to. Then at 5 days old, her right eye was the size of a golfball. The Vet contacted a specialist in Orlando, Florida to discuss what options we had and basically told us he never heard of it because the eyes and ears are sealed closed at birth so infections do not usually happen until the eyes open at 10 to 14 days. Anyway, he told us what to do. We had to open up the eye, flush it out, and put in antibiotics, then let it close back up until the eye opened on its own and could not say whether she would have vision. Needless to say, at 11 to 12 days old, both eyes opened but would need to wait to see if there was vision in the right eye. Of course, at that time she was officially named: Duet’s Spring Vision with a call name “V” She did have further complications and was on medication for the first six months of her life. After six months she was able to maintain her health and is now healthy, doing agility, obedience and rally and will celebrate her 2nd birthday on October 23, 2010 at a height of 10.5 inches and weighs in at 8.7 lbs. I cannot thank my Vet enough for saving V’s life, not once, not twice, but three times.

    Can you tell I am a proud mother.

  23. Oh boy here’s how it all started:All Yankee’s
    derek”JETER”- cat
    “MICKEY” mantle – horse
    “BERNIE” williams – sheltie
    “YOGI” berra – sheltie
    “TORRE” joe – horse
    “TINO” martinez – horse
    “MO” mariano rivera – cat
    “MOOSE” mike mussina – cat
    “BABE” ruth – cat
    “JORGE’ posada – carved wooden horse.
    That is the story of all our Yankees!!!!

  24. When I was in college, I met a dog named Katie and thought that was a really sweet name for a dog. Fast forward 20 years and I now have my first dog to raise on my own- a black Standard Poodle. Her name is pronounced “Kadie”, but we chose to spell it in the Bosnian language in honor of our best friends who are serving as missionaries in Bosnia. So, her name is Kejdi. And she is very , very sweet.

  25. When we got our tiny Toy Fox Terrier puppy, my husband and I couldn’t agree on a name. One day he said “He looks like a rat”. When my son was young, he had a pet mouse named Nicodemus – so voila, we named him Nicodemus. Usually we call him Nicky, but when he’s feisty, I say NICODEMUS in a stern voice and he usually shapes up.

  26. My agility dog is named “Snuggles.” We got her as a foster at age two and she came with that name. Since we weren’t planning on keeping her, we did not change her name. When she learned weave poles in two weeks, I knew that I had found my agility dog! Once we decided to keep her, we were going to change her name to something more tough and speedy, but Snuggles just fit so well, we couldn’t think of anything more appropriate.

    She is not very Snuggly when it comes to people approaching her car (or her crate for that matter.) I went to the lumber yard to pick up some materials and she warningly barked and barked at the attendant. I said, “Snuggles, Hush!” The attendant looked at me and said “Snuggles? Really? She sounds more like ‘Killer’ to me!”

    With us she is very Snuggly. Her name fits. 🙂

  27. I currently have Bob (the cat) and Marley (the dog). Marley is a MinPin/Papillon mix and she loves agility.

    Our biggest issue is her need to grow dreadlocks.

  28. My Aussie girl is named Corrie. I read somewhere that it meant “Chosen One.” She definitely made her statement. When I told our breeder friends I wanted a black-tri female, she was the only one that color in her litter of 7. I guess she chose me!

  29. My girls names are: Lynnwoods Gorgeous Girl – Known as Gigi and Princess Ariel, known as Air Bug. Seem to work well for us………

  30. My girl’s name is Cider. We adopted her from a puppy rescue during fall and since she is white with apple cider brownish spots it just fit. She is sweet as Apple Cider but can be a little fiesty at times to! 🙂

  31. I have an ACD, and when I got her from the breeder they called her Weaver (I have no idea why). Well, everyone hated it—and because of her name, everyone thinks she is a male—-so we almost changed her name, but glad we didn’t. (I always liked the name myself), but when I started agility classes with her, she LOVED THE WEAVE POLES!!!! Started her in the 2×2 method, and she just took off, her favorite obstacle. I can send her to the poles from any distance, any angle. I do have to say “poles” instead of weave, though!!!!

  32. When we go to look for a dog to adopt, we always have in mind what we are looking for. We usually have several names in our mind and pick the one that fits them the best when we see them. Katylee is a Corgi Mix and she is all girl and needed that feminine name.

    Our Beagle is Jake. My husband thought he looked like a “Jake”, kind of a “Good Ole Boy” attitude. Plus he thought it sounded good with Katy…that’s what he said. When we told the breeder, she laughed and told us that was his father’s call name. His registered name is “Boogie Woogie Beagle Boy” cause he likes to dance when he was little.

    For years I had a name picked out but never adopted a dog that fit the name. Finally 2 years ago we welcomed a little male Border Terrier into the family (had been shopping for one over 5 years). I took one look at his photo and knew he fit the name for several reasons. I finally got my “Makana” which is Hawaiian for “God’s Gift”. And that he truly is. Mak’s registered name is “Keepsake’s Cheviot Hills Dreaming”. The Cheviot Hills on the border of Scotland and England are where BT’s were orginally bred. So that makes up for his Hawaiian call name.

  33. Risque (pronounced Risky) Management is my girl’s name. I chose it because I bought from a breeder and wanted a show dog. I thought by going to a high profile breeder and spending a lot I would get show quality. Risque is super smart, quick, and loving. She is not the conformation quality I expected, but we have fun, fun, fun, doing agility.

  34. My Jack Russell is named “Twister.” It really fits him! He loves agility and so do I. He can turn on a dime with a twist of his spine!

  35. Dogs’names:

    Dog #1 Sarah – called Sarah Brown (chocolate/tan Cocker) by the breeder as a puppy; her sister is Suey (black/tan Cocker) short for Steeler Sue.

    Breeder is a Steeler’s fan; my brother a diehard Cleveland Brown’s fan; thus the Browns Vs. Steelers

    Dog #2 Vicki – named for the Crown Victoria police car; thus Vicki for short.

  36. Yikes – well, here goes… Shelby – named after one of my dance instructors and the car (she is elegant and fast). Bonnie came into the rescue with another beagle who we called Clyde. Kelly came into the rescue with another beagle who was named Regis. Roxie & Bubbles came with their names. Jacquelyn was named because she looked like a previous dog at the rescue – Jack. Pixie – because she looked like a Pixie. In hindsight, I probably should have called her Einstein and then maybe she would have had more intelligence. 🙂

  37. I really like dog names that fit and go together. I have a friend who has Cleo (a lab) and Cesar (a PBGV). Another friend had two rescues named Bonnie and Clyde.

    When my husband and I decided to get puppies (not thinking of agility then) he got a Scottish terrier and I got a Corgi. I had orginally thought of calling them Butch and Sundance, but the terrier somehow missed the terrier gene, as he’s shy and laid back, and just isn’t Butch enough for the name. Since the Scotty is a brindle, we called him Smokey so of course the Corgi became Bandit.

    Both dogs are doing agility, and all the workers at the trial know Smokey and Bandit.

    PS. how do I post a photo with my comments?