Irish Names for Dogs
Along with Molly, other Irish dog names in the dog Top 100 include Finn, Murphy, Riley, and Brody. Amusing Irish names that may be more appropriate for a dog than a baby include Tipper, Scully, Pegeen, and Kermit.
Irish names for dogs might be a nod to your dog's breed, as in Irish Setter or Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier. Or maybe you've got a red-haired dog that looks Irish and so needs an Irish name. Or it might be you who's Irish or who simply loves names from the Emerald Isle. These Irish names are perfect for dogs.
Irish Dog Names
Meaning:"fair or white"
Description:Finn is a name with enormous energy and charm, that of the greatest hero of Irish mythology, Finn MacCool (aka Fionn mac Cuumhaill), an intrepid warrior with mystical supernatural powers, noted as well for his wisdom and generosity.
Origin:Scottish and Irish
Meaning:"rowan tree; little redhead"
Description:Rowan – a strong surname and nature name (it's a tree with red berries) – is deservedly growing in popularity. Some scholars identify Rowan as originally a girls’ name, related to Rowena and Rhonwen, while others say Rowan's always been used for both genders. Sharon Stone chose the Roan spelling, which also relates to the reddish color, for her son, while Brooke Shields used Rowan for her daughter. Yet another increasingly popular spelling is Rowen.
Description:Ronan is the compelling legendary name of twelve Irish and Scottish saints that is now drawing some deserved attention; this cousin of the ascending Roman and Rowan was chosen by actor Daniel Day-Lewis and his writer-director wife Rebecca Miller in 1998, and more recently by actress Catherine Bell.
Origin:Irish short form of William
Description:Liam originated as a nickname for Uilliam, the Irish variation of William. William is an English name from Germanic roots that was brought to Ireland when the British fled England following the Norman Conquest. The Irish began using English names, including William, which led to the development of Uilliam and its short form, Liam.
Origin:Irish, meaning unknown, possible "man of prayer"
Meaning:"man of prayer"
Description:Declan is the Anglicized form of the Irish name Deaglán. St. Declan was one of the first missionaries to bring Christianity to Ireland, preceding St. Patrick. Originally from Wales, he founded the monastery of Ardmore in Ireland.
Meaning:"son of the red-haired one"
Description:Flynn, a charming Irish surname, is still used only quietly, despite its easygoing, casual cowboy charm, unlike Finn which is a star of this genre. Flynn was the choice of Orlando Bloom and Miranda Kerr for their baby boy, and is also the middle name -- used as his first -- of a son of Miranda's fellow supermodel Elle Macpherson, of Gary Oldman's son Gulliver and Marley Shelton's daughter West.
Meaning:"rye clearing; courageous"
Description:Riley originated as both an English and an Irish surname. The former was derived from British place names that got their names from the Old English words for "rye clearing." Irish Riley is a variation of Reilly, a surname taken from the given name Raghailleach.
Description:Sullivan is a jaunty Celtic three-syllable name, with a real twinkle in its eye. It was immortalized in the 1930s classic film Sullivan's Travels and was chosen for one of Patrick Dempsey's twin boys. Nickname Sully is equally jaunty.
Origin:Irish, English, and Scottish
Meaning:"broad eye or broad island"
Description:The energetic Brody is a name that claims different meanings and origins depending on whether you're looking at its Irish, Scottish, or English history -- and Eastern Europeans claim a version too. An alternate spelling is Brodie.
Description:Nolan is one of the rising Irish surname names, in the spirit of Conan and Ronan, partially inspired by pitcher Nolan Ryan-- who was named Lynn at birth, after his father. Nolan is a cheerful, friendly traditional Irish surname with the appropriate meaning of "champion," and one of the new attractive boy names starting with N.
Origin:Diminutive of Mary, Hebrew
Description:Molly originated as a diminutive of Mary, spawning from medieval variations Malle and Molle. Molly has been used as a stand-alone pet form of Mary since the Middle Ages, and has been consistently popular as an independent name in the U.S. over the past several decades.
Meaning:"floodtide, abundance, prosperity"
Description:Jaunty and raffish, Rafferty is one of the most engaging of the Irish surnames, used by Jude Law and Sadie Frost for their son. Fortunately, it doesn't still go by its original form: O'Raighbheartaigh.
Description:Rory is a buoyant, spirited name for a redhead with Celtic roots. The name Rory is getting more popular overall, but for the past few years has been trending decidedly toward the boys' side -- however, it's been rising to new heights for girls in recent years.
Description:Both offbeat and upbeat, this evocative traditional Irish name that runs through Celtic mythology is known here via award-winning novelist Cormac McCarthy (born Charles). The author's adopted name is related to Cormac Mac Airt, one of the great legendary high kings of Ireland.
Description:A growing number of high-profile (and other) parents are choosing to honor their musical idols, such as Hendrix, Presley, Jagger, and now Lennon, an Irish name for girls as well as boys with a wonderful meaning on many levels. Lennon first came to notice when Liam Gallagher and Patsy Kensit used it for their son in 1999, and singer-musician Adam Pascal followed their lead two years later.
Description:Orla is an Irish name closely associated with the high king Brian Boru, as it was the name of his sister, daughter and niece. It was very popular in the Middle Ages – the fourth most popular name in twelfth century Ireland – and has become popular again in Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales today. In Irish, the name is commonly spelled Orlaith or Orlagh.
Origin:Anglicized variation of Gaelic Brighid
Meaning:"strength or exalted one"
Description:Bridget is the Anglicized form of Brigid, an Irish-Gaelic name that was derived from the word brígh, which means "strength."
Origin:Scottish or Irish
Description:In Ireland and Scotland, Mac and Mc mean "son of"; here, Mac is a generic fella, or a short form cooler than either Matt or Max. Mac can be a nickname of any longer Mac or Mc starting name such as McCoy or Macalister. If you want to make it feel more complete, you can always spell it Mack.
Origin:Irish variation of James
Description:Parents who have tired of Sean are now contemplating Seamus, the Irish form of James, which has a lot more substance and verve.
Origin:Irish and Scottish
Meaning:"yew wood, archer"
Description:Ivo is an unusual, catchy name with the energetic impact of all names ending in 'o'. Hardly heard in the U.S., it is used a bit more frequently in England, as is the related Ivor, a favorite of such novelists as Evelyn Waugh and P.G. Wodehouse. Ivo is currently most popular in the Netherlands.
Description:Oisin is one of the most popular Irish baby names in its native land, though largely unknown in the US. The original Oisin was the mythological son of Finn McCool and Sadb, the goddess who was changed into a deer. A legendary war hero and poet, Oisin had a name that is also reminiscent in sound of the ocean. Pronounced correctly, this name has an attractive sheen.
Description:Kevin was derived from the name Caoimhín, which originated from the Irish elements coém, meaning “handsome,” and gein, “birth.” The feminine name Caiomhe, anglicized as Keeva, comes from the same origins. Kevin was first popularized by the seventh century Saint Kevin, who founded a scholastic monastery near Dublin and was rewarded by being made one of that city's patron saints.
Description:This phonetic Anglicization of the Irish name Eithne was made familiar by the single-named Irish singer and composer. St. Eithne was the daughter of a king and an early Irish convert to Christianity.
Origin:Irish version of Malachi, Hebrew
This spelling, which came to the attention of readers of the best-selling Angela's Ashes as the name of author Frank McCourt's father and brother, the latter of whom wrote a bestseller of his own, lends the biblical name a more expansive, almost boisterous image. Malachy is one of the Irish baby names that manages to strike the golden mean between familiarity and distinctiveness.
Origin:Irish or French
Meaning:"dark one, or from Arcy, or from the fortress"
Description:Delicate ballerina name with grace, charm, and heft courtesy of Jane Austen's Mr.
Origin:Irish or Portuguese or Italian
Meaning:"wild or weaver"
Description:Fia may be most notable at this moment as the Anglicized version of the Irish Fiadh, one of the fastest-rising names in the Republic of Ireland. The meaning of Fia or Fiadh is sometimes given as "deer" but that's in the sense of a wild deer, as the name relates to the ancient word for wild.
Origin:Irish, variation of Una
Description:Oona is a name made famous by Eugene O'Neill's daughter, who became Charlie Chaplin's wife. One of the original Oona's granddaughters was named after her, and is now an actress famous in her own right for playing Talisa of Volantis in HBO's "Game of Thrones." The double-o beginning gives their name a lot of oomph.
Description:Fallon is one of several boyish surname names introduced in the over-the-top 1980s nighttime soap Dynasty: they sounded cutting-edge at the time, but no longer.
Description:This jaunty Celtic surname -- the most common family name in Ireland -- is totally viable as a first. Although there was a possibility of its being feminized via the old TV sitcom "Murphy Brown," it has never taken off for girls and very much retains its masculine image.
Description:A variant spelling of either Irish Shea or Hebrew Shai, Shay feels at once vintage and modern.
Description:Following in the footsteps of popular brother Brady, Grady is another lively, ebullient Irish surname name. The O'Gradys (originally O Gradaugh) were an ancient clan that produced an impressive number of bishops.
Perhaps the most remarkable O'Grady descendant is Muhammad Ali, whose mother's maiden name was Grady.
Origin:Spelling variation of Rowan
Description:Warm-hued spelling spin on Rowan that was chosen by Sharon Stone for one of her three young sons.
Description:Cullen is an appealing Irish surname name that upped its cool factor considerably when it became the Twilight family name of Edward et al. It's considerably less popular than it was at its peak in 2010, but is still widely used.
Meaning:"broad meadow or large-chested"
Description:The Irish name given to Miranda Hobbes's son on the dearly departed Sex and the City is a friendly and energetic choice. You well might want to make your son part of the Brady bunch.
Origin:Irish, from Brid, Brigh, Brigid
Meaning:"strength or exalted one"
Description:A short, breezy name with a sophisticated yet upbeat image, that doesn't betray its Irish roots. Bree first came to notice here in 1971 via the complex prostitute character in the movie Klute, which earned Jane Fonda an Oscar. More recently, it was tied to the character of Bree Van de Kamp on Desperate Housewives.
Origin:Irish, variant of Diarmaid/Dermot
Description:Kermit was a Top 500 name until the 1960s, not coincidentally the decade in which Kermit the Frog became well known, proving that it isn't easy being green, even for a name. But we think it's time for some of those appealing Sesame Street names--Kermit, Elmo, Grover--to be taken out of that context and be considered on their own.
Meaning:"white fire or white bull"
Description:Fintan is an ancient Irish saints' name that in legend is also the name of the only person to survive The Flood. Popular in modern Ireland, Fintan is ripe for export to the US where it is rarely used but could make an excellent long form for the stylish Finn.
Origin:Spelling variation of Kellen
Description:Kellan Lutz is the attractive young actor who plays Emmett Cullen in the Twilight series.
Meaning:"brave in battle"
Description:One of the original unisex Irish surname names, energetic Casey bounced onto the scene in the 1960s, then peaked in the 1980s for both boys and girls.
Description:Though the cinematic Ferris Bueller was twenty years ago, the time for this name may be now.
Description:Any number of Fitz names -- Fitzgerald, Fitzpatrick, Fitzroy, Fitzwilliam -- have been used as Christian names, in fact Fitzwilliam was the given name of the dashing Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice. Fitz can be a short form of any of them and is often, like Mac, a nickname drawn from a surname.
Meaning:"leader of the elves"
Description:Elva is the anglicized version of Ailbhe, growing more popular in Ireland.
Origin:Place-name and Irish
Description:Relaxed, laid-back cowboy name with broad appeal, although none of the western place-names packs the same style power they did a few years ago.
Description:Arlen is a surname long used as a first name: It ranked on the US Top 1000 from the late 1920s until the late 1960s. Originally, Arlen was a variation of Harlan which came from Harland, a place-name which means "hare land" – a place with lots of rabbits. The name today is occasionally used for both genders, boys twice as often as girls. That may increase with the fashion for two-syllable n-ending boys' names.
Description:A popular Irish name virtually unknown here, but one that feels like it could follow in the footsteps of Siobhan and Saoirse. It's pronounced SOR-ka, but with a little hiccup between the 'r' and the 'c' that's difficult for non-Gaelic speakers to reproduce. Spelled (and pronounced) Sorsha, she is a major character in the movie Willow.
Meaning:"village with crosses"
Description:Crosby is an attractively laid-back Irish surname with retro musical associations to Bing and Crosby, Stills, and Nash, and with a jaunty air. Crosby Braverman was the name of a character on the TV show Parenthood, played by Dax Shepard.
Description:Madden is an Irish surname relative of Madigan rising through the charts thanks to its trendy two-syllable, -en ending sound along with its appeal to Madden Football video game-playing dads. John Madden is a former pro football player who went on to coach the Oakland Raiders and become a popular NFL commentator. Madden is also the surname of groovy Nicole Richie baby daddy Joel Madden.
Origin:English and Irish from French
Description:Bellamy is emerging as an up-and-coming girls' name, an Irish surname-y riff on the super-popular Bella series of names. While the Bella connection makes Bellamy sound a little trendier and more popular than it really is, we see the name possibly rising through the ranks for both genders in the coming years.
Origin:French or English
Meaning:"stain or from the south meadow"
Description:A jaunty offshoot of Sullivan, Sully will be associated by kids with the beloved character in the Pixar animated film Monsters, Inc. Some notable real-life namesakes are French poet and essayist Sully Prudhomme, the heroic pilot "Sully" Sullenberger, and Sully Erna, lead vocalist of Godsmack.