by Sophie Kihm
Naming a dog and naming a baby, while similar in some respects, are two totally different tasks. We have different requirements for our pet names and our baby names. Children need names that can serve them in multiple contexts over the many stages of life. Dogs don’t.
This is why we can call our dog Oreo, but our daughter has to be Oriana.
People just have more fun with dog names. They tend to be snappier and nickname-ier than the names we choose for our children. People are also more willing to give dogs names that are on the edge of style. Chester might seem too dusty for a baby boy, but on a Boston Terrier? Adorable.
So there’s more freedom when it comes to the cutesiness and casualness of a dog’s name, but there are also restrictions. According to experts, dog names should ideally be two syllables—long enough that they can hear the inflection in your voice, but short enough that they easily learn to respond to it. Now, you don’t have to follow that advice (there are plenty of well-adjusted pugs and poodles out there named Pearl and Penelope), but for the sake of this list, I’ve only suggested double-syllable names.
Below are less popular alternatives to the 100 most common female dog names. Because even though there’s less pressure when naming a dog, we know you name-nerds still aren’t going to settle for something in the Top 100.
And tomorrow–suggestion on how not to name your boy dog Duke.