The American Kennel Club offers these rules to consider when naming your pooch:
Names often reflect the character of your pet. Observe your dog for a few days and see if his personality suggests a name. Is he regal? Does she always want to be the center of attention? If so, how about “King” or “Star?”
Short, sweet and easily recognizable names work best in getting your dog to be responsive. Use a name that is one or two syllables ending with a vowel, such as “Sadie” or “Rocky.”
Don't choose a name that is too long or difficult to say. A name such as “Sir Barks A Lot” will only confuse your dog.
Avoid names that sound like commands. Names like “Joe” sound like “no” when called.
Pick a name that will fit your dog regardless of his age. For example, a puppy named “Fuzzy” may not be a good fit after he grows into adulthood.
Don't name your dog after a friend or family member without getting their permission first. You never know who could be offended.
Test out the name you would like to give your dog for a day or two. Remember any name you give your dog will be a 10- to 15-year commitment for the life of the dog.
After you choose a name for your dog, you use it often so he will learn it quickly.
Don't raise your voice every time you call him, and try to use his name in positive, playful settings, such as when you feed him, play with him or pet him.
Favorite dog names
The American Kennel Club says “Bear” and “Lady” were the most popular male and female dog names in the U.S. in 2007.
Rounding out the Top 10 for male dogs: Blue, Max/Maximus/Maxwell, Duke, Buddy, Jack, King, Bailey, Rocky and Harley; for female dogs: Belle/Bell/Bella, Princess, Mae/May, Rose, Daisy, Grace/Gracie, Baby, Molly and Maggie.