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HOW TO NAME YOUR PET - Advice from Elf

Naming a pet is a huge responsibility. It is for many who are not old enough to vote the only opportunity they have to name an actual living thing. Children accept this responsibility with huge aplomb and we as adults can learn from them.

Very few parents trust their seven year old to name their new sibling for fear of a name like The Mistake or Beethoven being suggested, but will happily allow their first born tyrant to name their pet something as obscure and unconventional as Mr Tits or God. The latter my parents had to endure shouting in parks for years after making the mistake of allowing 6 year old me to name the dog.

There is immense freedom in naming your animal in comparison to naming a human baby. It's your opportunity to pick a name that you could never legally be allowed to give an actual human without the risk of them being taken into care. It is liberating. Finally your childhood dreams of naming something The Terminator can be realised.

With this in mind, I am baffled by how many rather traditional pet names we still have floating about. Despite how cute Fluffy, Toffee and Fudge may be, aren't they rather conservative? They are everywhere. Where are the Guinea Pigs named Jaws and He who must not be named? Where is the Rat named Gatsby? I wish more people would release their inner rebel with their pet names. Throw a curveball into the mix. Name your goat after your favourite body part...

Thus, inspired by the many posts I have seen on forums with the title “What name should I give my guinea pig?” here are a few subjects that I would recommend looking to for inspiration:


Nothing says power like a randy Abyssinian guinea pig named ZEUS. If you want to create complex family dynamics then go the whole hog and name a mother and son duo OEDIPUS and JOCASTA. If you want people to second guess your abilities to calmly sort out the A-Level exam crisis then why not follow Gavin Williamson and name your pet tarantula KRONUS - the famous titan who castrated his own dad.


People make judgements quickly. Your animal's name is a C.V to the ears. Want your nervous mother-in-law to trust your pet tarantula? Nothing says 'respectful and dignified' like Helvetica. A Rottweiler named Comic Sans shows you are cheeky, charming and very popular with children, despite the fact you and your dog look like you enjoy eating bricks. A small hamster named Times New Roman shows that despite their size they, like their owner, are to be taken seriously and are also boring.


If you want an animal that demands respect and fear from animals and humans alike, imagine they own lots of land and believe in the feudal system. One way to find suitable names is to look through members of the Conservative party and House of Lords. Yes, Fluffy is a funny name, but what about LADY MEREDITH? If in doubt add a 'Lord' or 'Lady'. I would highly recommend this for pedigree animals that come from a history of incestuous overbreeding.


Give your tortoise the confidence to achieve great things by naming them after your favourite Mountain. EVEREST, ANNAPURNA, NANGA PARBAT, MANASLU, MAKALU and KANGCHENJUNGA are all names that immediately tell us that your pet has no fear and at some point you have travelled abroad. This is a power move so only name them when you are ready.


Just imagine your vet trying to pronounce DARMSTADTIUM in the waiting room or the expression on other parent's faces when your kids say they are off home to pay with PLUTONIUM and URANIUM. Absolute GOLD.


Imagine shouting Chesney Hawkes in the park. Other options include Dee-Lite, Right Said Fred, Cotton Eye Joe, Macarena (only for a sexually empowered female cat or a dog that likes running in circles), Chumbawamaba and My Sharona. Google the songs that were in the top forty when you were born and go from there.

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