Are You Sure You Want to Name Him Doogie Schnauzer?

There was a story the other day about some parents who had given their child the ill-fated name of Adolf Hitler.  As a teacher, I’ve been party to many urban legend discussions about poor choices for appellations (such as Vaseline – pronounced like Rosalyn, but with a “V” at the beginning).  

We have a little more leeway with pet names, fortunately, as dear Wonderbutt can attest to.  However, this post should serve as a warning that even pet names should be chosen with some thought to the possibility that you may need to yell that name in public some day:

Example #1 – My sister, affectionately known as Crash, texted me the other day that her dog had disappeared the night before.  They searched for awhile, but the dog, who is old, deaf and has very dark fur, was impossible to find that evening.

The next morning, her husband found the dog, thankfully, and she is perfectly fine.  Crash had me LOL, though, when she texted me about the incident.

The dog’s name (Crash told me I did not have to use a pseudonym in my blog since that would pretty much ruin the story) is Timber.

Crash’s words in her text, and I quote, “U can only call Timber so much before people think u need to be committed.”

Good point.  So, if you live on the East Coast somewhere, and you heard someone walking around yelling, “Timber!” over and over again a couple of nights ago, rest assured that you were not being warned of the imminent collapse of a tree onto your roof.  And it wasn’t an escaped mental patient.  Although we do fondly question my sister’s mental state sometimes.

Timber - Lost, Then Found


Example #2 – My friend, The Dictator, found a cat on the beach when she was on Spring Break during her high school years.  The cat was pretty skinny, which is how she explained to her mother the cat’s regrettable name – Boner.

Unfortunately for The Dictator’s mother, Boner was an outside cat who needed to be called in for dinner each night.  Luckily, their neighbors were either ignorant of the “street” meaning of the name, or too well-bred to ever mention the incongruity of a middle-aged woman stepping out into her backyard (which bordered a golf course) and yelling, “Boner!  Boner!” every night while everyone was trying to eat dinner.

I don't have a picture of Boner. And, quite frankly, I didn't want to Google that.


Enough said.

Posted on November 23, 2011, in Cats, Dogs, Humor, Sisters, Wonderbutt and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 38 Comments.

  1. Get ready for some interesting spam comments!

    When I first started training my dog, one of the tips we were given for naming a puppy was to go outside and call it really loud. If we were too embarrassed, we needed a new name.

  2. I just met someone with the name Valvoline the other day. I was so upset for them that I almost cried.

  3. Hahaha! My cat’s name is Psychoface. Luckily, he always comes immediately when called.

  4. I can just hear my neighbor (who shrieks “Sweetie” every morning and night to call her cat in) screaming “Boner!” That certainly would make our twice daily annoyance more fun 🙂

  5. Makes me rethink naming my daughter “Goodtimes”.

  6. Hmm. Maybe I’m doing it wrong, but everytime I wander the streets at night yelling, “Boner” something different happens…

  7. Our friends have a cat named Dumbass, politely shortened to D.A. when necessary. I don’t think Boner would shorten well, though. On second thought, I don’t even want to go there.

  8. Me thinks that your sister’s mental condition may be a family trait. But bonkers or not we love you and the rest of the mad people and animals that live in your house

  9. Very funny! The picture of “Boner” is hilarious 🙂

  10. whiteladyinthehood

    That was VERY funny!!!

  11. I had a dog named “Steve” once. It was kind of funny when the neighbor would always complain that “Steve” was crapping on his lawn…. 🙂

    • See?!! Even the most benign names can take on a completely different meaning when you are talking about crapping on the lawn. Of course, being The Idiot, you are probably well aware of the importance of a well-chosen name.

  12. haha, Boner 🙂
    A teacher friend of mine has had a number of students named Latrina over the years. She works in a fairly poverty striken area – lots of parents with limited education, who apparently decided that ‘latrine is such a pretty word, i’ll turn it into a girl’s name’. I would be sad for the girls who did go on to higher education and found out what their name is closest to.

  13. I don’t think you have to worry about using pseudonyms for your pets on the blog. I don’t think they mind, and I don’t think they’ll attract too many stalkers. (sorry, Wonderbutt, if that hurts your feelings.)

    • Actually, I don’t use Wonderbutt’s real name because it’s kind of dorky, and I don’t want anyone to make fun of me for giving him that name. Even Dimples fought me on that one. Pretty bad, huh, when Wonderbutt is better than his real name?

  14. Oh, and my mother once stopped a lady from naming her daughter “Latrine.” The lady thought it sounded pretty, and did not know what it referred to.

  15. For years I had a dog boutique and a customer with a dog named Shebites. He just thought it was the funniest thing to sit outside my store and watch the horror on peoples faces. Horror? Yes, they would ask what her name was as they reached to pet her, before they touched the dog he would say in a frenzied manner SHE BITES. They would reel there hand in so fast that he would almost fall of the bench laughing. I finally had to have him move to the corner and away from my door. The dog was a Rottweiler and very gentle but the owner was a bugger.

  16. This was funny! You never fail to deliver.

  17. Omg that cat looks like me with its neck all crooked .PS My mental state is questioned daily in case anybody wondered. Today a new employee said are you referring to yourself in the third person? The new girl said maybe you need medicine for that. I said no i am like Klinger always trying to get out of the army.

  18. I once had a friend with a dog named Mostly. They called him that because he was mostly brown, mostly shaggy, mostly quiet, and the list went on and on.

    It was really cute, but I wonder if they quickly got tired of explaining where his name came from.

    Boner the cat made my evening. That is the greatest feline name mistake I’ve heard yet.

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