Choosing the Perfect Cat Name


PetMD Editorial

Published Mar. 31, 2014

The expected arrival of a cat in the house is a delightful event. But it does bring up one important question: How do you settle on a cat name?

Some may say that choosing a cat name is easy. In reality, naming a cat is not always a simple process. This is because we forget that a cat’s response often depends on the name we have selected. The name should be picked out very carefully.

What’s in a Name?

Often people will typically select a “human” cat name, but this does not always work. Cats do not understand a name the way we understand it. This is because a cat takes in everything we say to him as a sound. He or she takes the sound as a command, and responds accordingly. Here are some other possible methods to choosing your new cat's name.


Legacy Names

One of the most popular ways to pick a cat name is to delve into your past. Many people choose to name their cat in memory of a beloved childhood or family pet. In the same manner that people pass on family names like Junior, providing your new addition with a recognized family pet name will make them feel right at home in your family.

Popularity Contest

Baby names aren’t just for humans. Just take a look at our top cat names and you'll find an abundance of baby names. The popularity of cat names of course depends on the country you live in, and language(s) you speak.

Think Outside the Litter Box

Choosing a completely unique cat name is a great conversation starter, especially if you get your friends and family in on the action. You can hold a crazy cat-naming contest, or you can name your cat after your favorite food or performing artist. The possibilities for cat names are endless.


If you would like some more ideas for popular cat names — or just all cat names — check out our Top Cat Name List, where we have a growing list of over 5,000 potential names for cats. 

Image: DreamBig / via Shutterstock

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