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Saturday, September 29, 2012

It's apple time! Here in Washington that means a drive east over the mountains to the farm markets for some crisp, fresh apples

. (By the way, that leash and collar above are sold in our store. Just saying...) 

There are so many varieties of apples and just the names themselves are fun to consider: Fuji, Cameo, Jonagold, and Honeycrisp, have become popular Washington-grown apples. We get Liberty apples that are trucked in from Oregon. If you are near Sebastopol, California, you'll find Gravensteins in a few areas on this list. The kids still love the Red Delicious apples for lunchbox treats, and of course, Granny Smith for pies. Massachusetts boasts so many apples with names like Spigold, Ambrosia, and Crimson Crisp. There lots of other local apple varieties all around the USA, and 7,500 throughout the world.

I occasionally skim those articles on currently popular baby names that appear from time to time in the news, and recently read one that mentioned the trend in girl names ending in the -ey suffix. Waverley, Ashley, and so forth. Well, we're all about dogs here, so what about the dog names we choose?

My limited observations would divide currentdog names into roughly two categories of endings. There are the -ey names for sure: Happy, Lacey (that's Barbie's Chihuahua's name by the way - you learned it here), Trixie, and Barkley. These are definitely happy and upbeat, easy to call out, and cute.

Is there another category for currently trending dog names that end in -er? Dodger, Keeper, Tagger, Sniffer, Tracker, and others suggest active, alert, dogs who are on the go and enthusiastic. But it's not just about suffixes.

Like apples, there are so many kinds of dog names that categorizing them seems endless. There are the one-syllable sheepdog names from the farm dogs with phenomenal focus: Shep, Skip, Tam, and Spot. I'm always wondering if the name follows the dog's personality and style, or the other way around. I'd really like to read some comments about your dog's name and how you chose it. Did he just seem like a Skippy, lively and active, or was there another back story to explain how Homer got his name?

The old-school dog names were big on royalty and aristocratic titles: King, Queenie, Duke, Princess, and the like. Isn't it a wonder that we've never named our dogs after the titles of our government leaders: Senator, Prez, Councilman, or Mayor? At least I've never heard any. The military and police titles are well represented with: Sarge, Gunner, Captain, and Major. Mainstay names like Jake, Max, Rex, and other one-syllable, regular guy names are still also popular.

Probably my favorite category is the lady names for stocky, solid, no-nonsense breeds like English Bulldogs, Pugs, and Saint Bernards. My favorite English Bulldog puppy girl name is Edna, an absolutely adorable dog I met some time ago. Ruby, Mabel, and the solid, no-frills women's names are popular with these breeds. The absolute best I've heard in recent years is Darla, shown right here wearing her football jersey.

She's not Barbie's dog; she belongs to a Patriot's fan. Any more questions?

Of course, there are no rules to follow when naming your dog. Go traditional, trendy, or completely original with a made-up name that has significance only to you. Your dog only cares that in some way, maybe just on the veterinarian's chart, your last name appears with his. It's all about the pack, and belonging together. Frisky, Lucky, Homer, Honey, Prince, or Hazel will do their best to live up to your hopes for them, and be a credit to the family name.

How did you decide on your dog's name? We'd love to know.

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