It is always interesting to hear how and why people choose certain names for their dogs. Was it something about the dog that made you decide on a particular name or was your dog given a name simply because it had a nice ring to it? Choosing the right name for your dog can be a simple decision for some and a tough one for others. Whatever your methods may be, the name you ultimately give to your dog and how you use it can help determine successes in training and behavior.

When naming your pup, it’s important to remember that they are vocal animals, not verbal. Avoid possible confusion for your dog in training by making sure that their names don’t rhyme with basic commands! Names that rhyme with “no” should especially be avoided. You wouldn’t want your dog to wonder whether you’re calling him or reprimanding him!

Contrary to popular belief, studies have shown that it is okay to rename a newly adopted dog. You can’t assume the previous owners did everything right and it’s a great way to get a fresh start! Here are some tips on renaming:

  • For the first few days, carry a pocketful of treats
  • Every once in a while, and also specifically when you do want your dog’s attention, call out his new name and then immediately smile, praise heartily, and give him a treat.
  • Even if he doesn’t turn to look at you when you call out the name, do the above any way, and soon he will know that hearing that word means great things are coming, and he will respond as if that word is his own!

Does originality play an important role when you choose your dog’s name? Below we’ve listed the top 10 names of 2011. Some, like Max, have been on the top 10 list for years! One of the reasons it’s so popular is that it’s short, sweet, and easy to distinguish between most of the popular commands when it comes to training.

  1. Bella
  2. Baily
  3. Max
  4. Lucy
  5. Molly
  6. Buddy
  7. Daisy
  8. Maggie
  9. Charlie
  10. Sophie

Tell us how you chose your pup’s name in the comments below!

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