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What's in a Name?

Updated: Apr 10

Hello, everyone! It’s Gretchen here again. Spring is getting closer, and I’m sure we are all looking forward to sunny days and warmer temperatures here soon.

My mother and I have a lot in common of course, but one thing we share is our interest in names. Mom is way past her years of worrying about what to name a child or pet, but she still has a baby name book in her collection. Mom gave me a unique name, which I disliked as a child, because it was different, but it is the same reason I love my name now as an adult, because it IS different.

So you would think I’d pick a unique name for my dog, right? Well, not really. My husband and I chose “Bailey”. Bailey is a pretty common name for pets, but not for the reason we chose it. She is named after George Bailey, in “It’s a Wonderful Life”. We love Jimmy Stewart, we love that movie, and we found Bailey in a rescue right before Christmas.

Another very popular name is Luna, for both cats and dogs. Our very first patient here at the clinic was a cat named Luna. I think it’s a beautiful name. It means “moon” in Spanish. It also happens to be my sister’s last name, so it makes me smile when I hear it.

We have a family of clients who are runners, and they have named their dogs after famous runners. Another family are Iowa Hawkeye fans, so they named their new puppy after Iowa’s current famous female basketball star. I’m always tickled to hear the different names when clients call to make an appointment. Some names are very dignified, and others are silly and fun, and I love them all.

Names can be basic, or very creative. But sometimes the meaning behind a name tells the bigger story. Next time you’re in the clinic, we’d love to hear why you chose your pet’s name!

***This post is dedicated in memory of our beautiful Bailey. We had to say goodbye to Bailey on February 12, 2024, just days after I wrote this. Fly high, sweet girl. You were always our angel, but now you have your wings.***


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