After treating the third Lola of the day I decided to check our hospital's database. Out of almost 5,000 pets, 146 are named Lola. Given the infinite nature of animal nomenclature, how could almost three percent be named Lola?

Max accounts for another two percent. And Bella and Lucky each share another near 1.5 percent or so. So how can that be? Are we really that ovine that we’d choose the same darn name our neighbor's pet has?

Well … yes. The stats don’t lie. Almost eight percent of our clientele share the same four names. I think that’s very strange, but it doesn’t keep more and more of my new clients from coming in with another Lola.

Lest you think me hypercritical, let me be clear: I’m not condemning humanity for its lack of originality in this matter. After all, my son goes by the über-popular name, Max. So you won’t find me crying foul when the next Lucky comes in. You will, however, hear me referring to these commonly named pets by their last names, too. Which I find interesting.

So instead of just plain Lucky, you’ll hear me refer to my patient as “Lucky Hernandez” or “Lucky Soto” or “Lucky Weiss.” No longer do these pets go by a single name as all my patients normally do. No, instead, they get a full two names — a style I’m increasingly driven to adopt. (Subconsciously, of course, seeing as this subject isn’t something I’ve ever given voice to before this post — not that I can remember, anyway.)

Now that I think about it, it’s like this for many more of my patients these days. Consider “Grumpy Lutz,” “Heidi Andersen,” “Snowy Morgan,” “Fuzzy Fleites.” They all get their first and last names added in. Which makes me chuckle now that I think of it — especially when I think about my own “Slumdog Khuly.” (What a name, right?)

OK, so now that I’ve gone off on another of my kooky tangents, it’s your turn to opine. What’re your pets called? Does it matter what your veterinarian calls them?  And what’s in a name, anyway?


Dr. Patty Khuly

Art of the day: "A dog named Tugboat" by Jimmy Brown.