Cute puppy and kitten

When it comes to popular pet names, we know a thing or two here at Vetstreet. After all, we’ve been analyzing data on the biggest dog names and hottest cat names for years!

But this year, we thought we’d try our hand at predicting those popular cat and dog names before the data becomes available. So we’ve looked into our crystal ball — and assessed a few big news and pop culture trends — to come up with our predictions for the biggest cat and dog names of 2016.


With 2016 being an election year, there’s little doubt that many of the candidates will become household (pet) names. We expect to see cats and dogs named Carly (for Republican candidate Carly Fiorina), Hillary (or possibly Clinton), Jeb (some with the exclamation point at the end of the name, as the younger Bush has used in his campaign) and, of course, Trump (as in The Donald). 

Movies and Television

The end of 2015 is overflowing with blockbuster films that are sure to influence the names we choose for our pets, and there are several movies coming out in 2016 that we know everyone will be talking about. A few of the names we anticipate seeing are: 

  • The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2: Katniss (or, for some felines, Catniss) has already shown promise as a popular name, and we have a feeling a few more people will be pro-Peeta, too, once it’s all said and done.
  • The Peanuts Movie: The gang is back, and we can almost guarantee that these names will be everywhere: Snoopy, Lucy and Linus. Oh, and good grief! We nearly left off Charlie!
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Old characters like Han, Leia, Chewie and Luke will certainly be big, but also watch for some new character names like Rey, Finn and Kylo.
  • Finding Dory: No chance of forgetting about this one! Dory, the fish from Finding Nemo, was a popular moniker even when she didn’t have a movie named for her, so we have high hopes of seeing Dory climb the ranks next year.
  • The Jungle Book: Although many still love these names from the first time this movie hit theaters (or, you know, from the actual book), this latest iteration is sure to make the names Mowgli, Baloo and Kaa top picks for a whole new generation.
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: J.K. Rowling’s character Newt Scamander is sure to capture the attention of magically inclined pet owners so we expect to see Newt becoming more popular soon. 
  • Game of Thrones: Fans might be missing Jon Snow after the season finale, and although we’re hoping the rumors that he’s returning next season are true, we suspect a few people might keep the character around through their pet’s name. Another sure-to-be-popular choice from this show is Daenerys (Dany is quite a cute nickname!) or possibly Khaleesi —  no dragons or victory on the battlefield required.


Is there a bigger name in music right now than Taylor Swift? Granted, we could be slightly biased since she’s such a cat lover, but we also realize that she’s the reason we all have squad goals these days, so we can definitely see animal lovers creating their own furry squad and naming them after characters in the Bad Blood music video: Dilemma, Homeslice, Catastrophe, Knockout and Domino, to name a few.

Given the much-celebrated return of rapper Missy Elliott, we envision plenty of pets with either the name Missy or Elliott hitting a dog park near you. We also expect to meet plenty of Drakes (does anyone else think Hotline Bling is the toughest earworm to get rid of, ever?) and Blakes (as in Shelton) in the veterinary waiting room next year.


The World Series showcased a few superstars this fall, but Kansas City Royals fans have several clever pet name options with Hosmer (for Eric Hosmer, the first baseman), Esky (for Alcides Escobar, the shortstop), and, as a matter of fact, we actually know of someone who recently named her dog Moose in honor of third baseman Mike Moustakas. Another baseball name that might see a jump in popularity next year is Jeter, since Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter just retired after 20 seasons — what better way to honor a legendary player’s career, right?

Baseball isn’t the only sport bringing potential pet names to mind. Serena could be big, as tennis star Serena Williams had an incredible 2014-15 season, and although she’s taken a bit of a break, it seems she’s likely to go right into another one in 2016 as she sets her sights on a Hopman Cup title. And 2015 Super Bowl champs the New England Patriots are looking strong again this season, meaning we wouldn’t be surprised one bit to see lots of puppies and kittens named Brady (for the team’s quarterback Tom Brady) and Gronk (for tight end Rob Gronkowski). And women’s soccer certainly grabbed plenty of headlines this year, so we suspect Carli Lloyd’s unforgettable hat trick for Team USA in the Women’s World Cup final will inspire plenty of soccer fans to name their next pet after her.

It’s worth noting that we also anticipate some of the trendiest and most popular names from recent years to keep right on rising. So although we don’t have a new Avengers or Twilight movie on the horizon, we’re sure plenty of people will still be naming their pets Thor, Loki and Bella. And even though The Big Bang Theory isn’t exactly new, we still expect to see plenty of pets named Penny next year. 

Did we miss any names you think will make it big in 2016? Let us know in the comments!

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