Click here to learn more.
Miss Kitty, Whiskers, Lucky and Scooby may seem like adorable — not to mention popular — names for a feline or canine. But just like baby names, the kind of monikers we pick for our pets ebb and flow with the times.
After mining Vetstreet's records to determine the top cat and dog names that have been trending up over the past 12 years, we decided to also take a look at pet names that have drastically dropped off the popularity list.
For some added insight about these down-trenders, we turned to Laura Wattenberg, author of The Baby Name Wizard and creator of babynamewizard.com, to help us divine why Brandy and Snowball have fallen off the favorability track to make room for all the Lolas and Coopers now in the pet world.
While analyzing the trendiest pet names, we discovered that owners often find inspiration in human baby name books when selecting a name for their pet. According to Wattenberg, this explains why description-centric picks — Snowball, Pepper, Shadow — are on the decline. "Some of these falling names were once in the hall of fame of popular names," says Wattenberg, citing examples like Tabitha, Tigger, Sheba and Miss Kitty. "For cats, in particular, the trend toward more humanlike naming shows that cats are really becoming a major part of the family."
Another significant connection between many of the names on the downward-trending list: A lot of them were tremendously popular in the 1980s. Monikers like Misty, Samantha, Katie and even — ruh-roh! — Scooby. The folks at VH1 may love waxing nostalgic about the era of acid-washed jeans and metal bands, but when it comes to pet names, America has clearly moved on. Sorry, Spike.
In addition to the meaning behind a name and the connotations it may hold, we also have to take into account the actual sound. Wattenberg points out that many of the cat picks in decline have light, crunchy sounds, such as Whiskers and Alex. Names rising in popularity are warmer and softer, including Lola and Cooper. Another theory to ponder: Owners are opting for cuddlier names because they're more attached than ever to their pets.
Did you see any of your pets' names on this list? If so, don't be too insulted. After all, these names were at one time popular!
For more interesting pet trends culled from Vetstreet's stats, check out these stories.
Like this article? Have a point of view to share? Let us know!
Thank you for subscribing to Petwire. Look for the latest newsletter each Wednesday.
Nindiri, a 7-year-old jaguar, proudly
carried her little bundle into her den to
meet the public at the San Diego…
Rescuers are using drones to locate and
help some of the Texas city’s estimated one million homeless dogs.
Before you buy chicks or ducklings for
your kids' Easter baskets, make sure you
know what you're getting yourself…
Dr. Marty Becker knows from experience
that it's hard to adjust to children leaving
home and taking family pets…
It’s more than just cute when your kitty
naps in a box — it’s an instinctive
behavior that’s hardwired in her…
The talented Sporting Group dogs will
impress you with their hunting skills and
win you over with their…
Our expert explains why the old formula
that one year of a dog's life equals seven
years of human life isn’t…
Want to find out how well your cat or dog is digesting his food? Well, our vet says the proof is in your pet's poop.
The active and playful Devon Rex’s high cheekbones and slender build make her look like a top feline model.
If the video doesn't start playing momentarily,
please install the latest version of Flash.
Thank you for subscribing.