Things Not to Name Your Pet

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I think I'm living in the cat Bermuda Triangle. It seems like every day, another one goes missing, and another 150 missing cat posters decorate the trees and phone poles in my neighborhood. Don't get me wrong, I always feel sorry for their poor owners -- but I also find myself thinking, more often than not, what a terrible name for a pet. But the inspiration for this blog was this one, which I just had to snap a picture of:

This cat, poor lost soul that he is, has not one bad name, but two. (You let the kids name the cat, didn't you? Bad idea. I nearly named my mother's fox terrier "Falcon" when I was a GI Joe-obsessed nine-year-old.) Little wonder it ran away. Because when it comes to naming your pet, there should be some basic ground rules. It should sound like a pet, not like your stoner roommate. That rules out Gary, Ryan, Jeff, Amanda, etc. (Chris Higgins and I were once housemates, and we had a fancy goldfish named Paul. That's a terrible pet name -- it's also only a fish; I never would've done that to a dog.)

You can also go too far in the other direction, and give your pet a really cutesy, self-consciously pet name pet name. This is also a bad idea. According to The Internet, here are some of the worst real names of this sort:

Norman Tinkle-Winkle (cat)
Sir Crapsalot (dog)
Neuteronomy (cat)
Pussalini (cat)
Beowoof (dog)
Fussbudget the Squeak (cat, kinda cute actually)

Yet another genus of Bad Name is the Overly Long and Formal Silly Name. To wit:
Capt. Beauregard Schmoo-Diddeley (cat)
General Colon Bowel (dog)
Senator Loomis P Nutley III
Scootacious P. Fruitwinkle
Countess Rumpleteazer Cattulus Anastasia Hecate-Baalith of Kalma Nefferkitty Baghera Bastet la chate noire
Sir Meowington Pudger Cat The Third

Then there are the absurd head-scratchers, all given to cats:
Small Man in a Catsuit
Chinese Food
Ducttape
Hors D'Ouvres
Volume Discount
Freeway

But hey, that's just my two cents. What are the worst pet names you've run across?

PS! If anyone HAS seen a tailless cat that answers to "Tailless" in Santa Monica, let me know and I'll give you the number to call.

June 6, 2008 - 6:04am
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