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by Joe Chanda February 06, 2015 2 min read

What’s in a Name? As any pet owner will tell you, there is so much in a name, particularly when you’re naming a dog who will be your new companion. Male dog names rise and fall in popularity even more rapidly than baby boy names do, and staying up with the trends is one way pet owners relate to each other and showcase their pet’s style.

Popular baby names have become the norm for puppies, with a few exceptions. All of the top female puppy names are people names, but male puppies have a little distinction here. While there will be thousands of boy puppies named Puppy, Bear, and Duke this year, these are not popular for people. Male dogs have created their own category of names.

This year, we’ll continue to see trends with people names being adopted for puppies, with the addition of a few surnames that have turned into great dog names.

Top Puppy Names for Male Puppies in 2015

  • Charlie (means “man” in Old English)
  • Max (from Maximilian, meaning “the great”)
  • Duke (meaning, “a commander, leader, or chief”)
  • Bear (meaning, “strong as a bear”)
  • Jake (a Biblical name derived from James; also Australian slang meaning “it’s all good”)
  • Toby (a character in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night; from Tobias, meaning “the Lord is good”)
  • Bentley (originally an English surname; means “from the meadow”)
  • Sawyer (an English surname meaning “one who cuts timber” which could be appropriate for a puppy who likes to chew)
  • Rocky (from rock, meaning “solid and dependable”; this name was made popular following the Rocky movies about a prize boxer, starring Sylvester Stallone)
  • Cooper (an English surname for someone who makes barrels)
  • Zeus (Greek, meaning “from the Greek God Zeus” who was father of the Gods and all men)
  • Hudson (an American name made popular by the Hudson River, which runs through New York City)
  • Jack (Shakespearian name; in modern English it means “manly” or sometimes “a rebel”)
  • Finn (from the Irish Fionn, which means bright, fair-haired, blonde, or white; this name also has a modern-day association with the water and swimming)
  • Emerson (meaning brave and powerful; this name has become popular thanks to inspiring quotes of 19th century writer Ralph Waldo Emerson)
  • Buddy (meaning a close friend and companion; the name is derived from the word brother)

When you’re selecting a name for your puppy, you want to consider whether the name is distinctive from words you use in everyday speech. For instance, “Link” might not be a good name for a puppy, since you may use this word in speech.

You also might want to consider how many syllables the name has. Most pet names tend to be short and one or two syllables. Bartholomew would be hard to shout across the park. However, puppies are quick and smart will be able to recognize any name you give them. The name you give your puppy is a gift you give your puppy and sets him apart from other dogs in the world.

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