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A Pet By Any Other Name...

Considering the number of nicknames our pets have, after time they certainly learn to respond to a variety of names! If you adopt or rescue a dog that's not a puppy, chances are the furry one has a name already. And here enters this super cute pooch, Chyna. My friend tawvry and her boyfriend are rescuing this lass from a San Francisco shelter. Her adoption date is tomorrow, and everyone (North, too!) is super excited. However, the one thing they're not so excited about is her name. Considering they're not the first people I know to change a pet's name after adoption, I thought I'd offer some helpful tips to get started with this process. If you're curious . . . then


It's actually fairly easy to teach a newly adopted dog a new name. The pup will be getting used to the sound of your voice, and with a little patience that includes the sound (and tone) of your voice calling her new name. To get started, grab some treats or kibble. When addressing the pet, call out her new name with a friendly manner, gesture, and smile – praise the dog when she comes and offer a treat. Repeat this when it's time for walks or just when you want the pet to come to you, even if it takes her a bit to look and respond. Fear not, because even if the name you choose is totally different than her original name, after a short while she'll realize that when you say this magical word and she comes to you, it's yum time. And that's all it takes!

Join The Conversation
LittleMascara LittleMascara 9 years
It's easier to change a pet's name if their new name closely resembles their old one. They won't know the difference. My cat and dog both respond to their names... though not always the commands that follow!
ranksubjugation ranksubjugation 9 years
My cats know their names and all their nick names -- you can see them look over and blink when you call them -- but they usually just go about their business without regard for what you want. If you want to get a cat to actually come over to you, try making really high-pitched kitten meows. Both cats come running whenever i do this.
fuzzles fuzzles 9 years
I adopted my Persian man this past summer. The previous owners had bestowed upon him the most perplexing of names...AVR. The initials of a business in the area, and pronounced Aye-Vee-Are. I seriously hope that these people are in therapy! I mean, WTF??? My solution was to pick a similar sounding name. And within one day, AVR became Oliver. He learned his new name within a day, and hasn't looked back since! :)
Stupidasscat Stupidasscat 9 years
Its easy to do I adopted my dog 3 years ago her original name was Betsy (she doent look like a betsy) see resembled Wiley E. Coyote so we named her Wiley and she has responded well to it every so often I say Betsy come and she dont respond but then I say Wiley come and here she comes runnin. It probably is no different than a lady getting married and then getting used to her new last name.
stormer21 stormer21 9 years
Changing the name is fine . . . dogs don't mind. They can pick up on their new name the first day you get them. Just repeat it to them in a very happy voice over and over again while giving them attention. After I changed the name of my rescue dog, the trainer at his obedience class tried to use him as an example that most dogs don't know their names. She called him, and to her surprise, he turned his head to her and got really excited.
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 9 years
its the tone you use, not the name really, they should change it if they dont like it.
macgirl macgirl 9 years
I decided to keep my little guys name. It was Gage which wasn't horrible, just reminded me of the kid from the Pet Cemetery book ;-) We had friends that changed the name of their three legged Chihuahua to "Rocket", it suits him and he adapted just fine :-)
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