Kamis, 17 Januari 2013

Naming Your Dog

Monster. Halo. Feliz. Sammie. Darwin. Quixote. From the cute to the ridiculous to the threatening, choosing a name for your dog can provide moments of fun – or hours of agony.

There are a number of things you can look at or think about when trying to come up with the right name. First of all, there is no right name. Or wrong name.

 Your dog’s name could reflect your dog’s appearance, personality, or history, or it could say something about you. If you have an interest in music, you might name it after a composer or performer that you admire. Or if you like writing or editing, you could call it Comma or Stet.

It could be that your new pet reminds you of a character from a book or movie in some way. Maybe that furrowed brow looks just like House. Or the way that the dog yawns is reminiscent of Jim Carrey as Ace Ventura.

You might be looking for a name with a deeper meaning. Maybe you want to avoid common appellations like Tiger and Max, and yet when you learn that Max means “the greatest,” you decide that it isn’t such a bad name after all.

If you can settle on a type of name that you would like, you have already won half the battle. For example, if you want a name that will make people laugh, then you’ve eliminated many human names, as well as a slew of more prevalent dog names. On the other hand, if you are looking for something dignified that will command respect, you might consider a serious yet unpretentious name like Solange.

It can also depend on your dog’s role in your life. For a guard dog, you probably don’t want to choose something sweet and silly like Buttercup or Barkley. Who is going to run away when they hear you calling for Puffy or Bam-Bam? No, you want a tough name that will strike fear into the heart of any intruder. Blade or Psycho might do the job better.

But perhaps your dog is going to be around strangers a lot, especially children, and you want them to feel at ease. In this case, a tough name might be unsuitable. Kisses might be more apt than Jaws, just like Waddles could be more appealing than Pilsner.

Then, of course, there is the group that likes to give their dog a new or very obscure, sometimes nearly unpronounceable name. For this crowd, names from other languages can work, like Fjodor or Schotzie. The best bet is to go with a language like Russian or Hebrew that doesn’t share the English alphabet. In this way, the transliteration could look so outlandish that nobody will even dare to try to say it out loud. You can rest assured that no one else in the neighborhood has a pet with that name.

On a more practical note, you should pick out a name that your dog can learn to recognize as his or her own. If you yourself can’t even say it properly, there’s a good chance that your pet will never understand that they are supposed to respond to this garbled noise. Similarly, names that sound a lot like commands could be confusing to your dog, so they are best avoided as well. Mitch and “sit” might be a little too similar for him or her to pick up on.
When it comes down to it, it is your choice what to name your dog, but just remember that they will get older. Most likely, you’ll want to choose a name that will remain suitable for the rest of your pet’s life.
By: Ron Ayalon

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