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The Most Popular Dog Names of 2018

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For many of us, coming up with that perfect name for our furriest family members is challenging, albeit fun! You want a name that perfectly conveys their personality, reflects your own style, tastes, and interests, and is meaningful enough to honor your very best friend for the rest of their life (and yours)!

While there are classic names that are always on trend and topping the charts, each year sees new pop culture trends appearing in our pet’s names, too.

Dog Names

Rover.com, the world’s largest network of pet sitters and dog walkers, unveiled its sixth annual report of the year’s most popular dog names. Human names for dogs topped the 2018 list, and many of the year’s top baby names are also popular dog names. Pop culture names were once again among the most popular, with names inspired by movies, musicians, and the royal family standing out as trendsetters for 2018.

This year’s top names highlight the powerful influence of pop culture. Names inspired by newsmakers like Cardi B, Childish Gambino, “Fortnite,” “Black Panther” and celebrity babies rose dramatically. The name Cardi rose more than 1,000%, Nakia of “Black Panther” is up 560%, Gambino rose 190% and Stormi (daughter of Kylie Jenner and Travis Scott) increased 240%.

These trends echo a new survey from Rover, which found 33 percent of pet parents named their dog after a character from a TV show, video game, movie or book, and another 12 percent took inspiration from famous or historical figures.

The humanization of dog names also continued in 2018, as 36% of all dog names are decidedly human. The popularity of human names for dogs is underscored by the surprising fact that one in three dog owners have met a dog who shares their name.

Using one of the largest databases of dog names in the country, The Dog People at Rover examined this year’s data to learn where Americans draw their naming inspiration.


Pop Culture Trends:

This year pop culture names made up 16% of all dog names.

  • Dog owners are enamored with the royal family. The name Harry is up 133% and Meghan rose 129%.
  • Superdogs: “Guardians of the Galaxy” names rose 97%, with the name Drax leading the pack (up 186%). Dogs named after “Black Panther – including Shuri, Nakia, and Zuri – are up 25%.
  • Pet parents are also taking inspiration from famous villains. The name Thanos rose 215% and Pennywise increased 500% this year.
  • “Westworld characters are more popular this year, with Maeve up 127% and Dolores up 87%.
  • Harry Potter is celebrating its 20th anniversary and pet parents still love the boy who lived. The name Draco is up 123%, Albus Dumbledore rose 200%, and Albus Dumbledog increased 29%.

Viral Trends:

The internet is shaping the culture and dog names trends. This year, pet parents are naming their dogs after trends that went viral.

  • Dog names from the video game “Fortnite” are up 16%, with Zoey being the most popular.
  • The popular dance moves, Whip and Dab, increased 40% over last year.
  • Following the popularity of the “In My Feelings” Challenge, the names JT, Kiki, and KB are all trending up this year.

Food Trends:

Foodie pet parents are picking names from their food and beverage favorites, with five percent of all dog names being food-themed this year.

  • Millennials’ obsession with brunch has crossed over into dog names. Brunchy names like Biscuit, Muffin, and Waffles are up 12%.
  • Booze-themed names like Guinness and Whiskey are up 17% in 2018, but Rosé has fallen from favor — it decreased 44%.

For more information, visit www.rover.com/blog/dog-names/.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Love these names especially Luna, Cardi, and Bates. Sounds totally badass!

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