If you’re going to look at Scottish dog names, it does make sense to start with the names that tend to be the most popular. These aren’t just names that are popular because they are Scottish; in fact, many of these names are just generally popular. If you’re looking for the kind of name that you’ll be able to find on countless little trinkets, you’re going to want to start here.
As you might imagine, one of the most popular Scottish dog names is Lassie. Coming in close behind, though, are a couple of names that you might not immediately guess – Archie and Whiskey. Nessie and Duff are also quite popular among Scot-loving dog owners, as are Scotch and Tartan. Going a little farther afield is Ainsley and Thistle, with Islay and Skye also taking some of the top honors. Some even choose to honor Scotland’s unit of currency by naming their dogs Sterling.
Quick Thoughts About Choosing a Name For Your Dog
One of the hardest things about getting a new dog is attempting to come up with a name. While it’s daunting, it’s also something that gives you a chance to let your creativity run wild. Inspiration is a key factor here, but so too is the personality of your dog.
If you’re the kind of person who likes to come up with the name before meeting the dog, it makes sense to look at a place like Scotland to get a bit of inspiration. You can spend some time not only thinking about what you love about Scotland but the kinds of words that make you think about the country. There are many different choices that you can make when you’re thinking about a subject as broad as the nation of Scotland, so don’t feel like you have to settle for one of the most popular names to let others know the source of your dog’s name.
As a word, you shouldn’t feel too bad if you don’t actually end up using that great Scottish name that you came up with when you were searching for your dog. You’re going to use this name when you put it on records, of course, but that doesn’t mean that you’re going to use it that often in real life. Nicknames are very common for dogs, so it might be wise to look for a name that you can shorten when you’re trying to get your dog to pay attention.
As a note, it’s almost always wise to pick something that’s easy for both you and for others to pronounce. You’re going to hear the name quite a bit, so you might as well choose something that you’ll get to hear correctly. This is especially useful when you’re looking for a name that might not be in English – such as an Indian, Mexican, or Italian name, though you’d be surprised by how many common names can be mispronounced by strangers.
Scots-Gaelic Words as Scottish Names For Dogs
Scotland was once a land of many languages. While English is now the dominant tongue in the country, about one percent of those who live there still speak Gaelic. The Scots dialect is a unique beast, with a number of words that aren’t found in other forms of Gaelic. If you’re looking for a great dog name, you could do much worse than to look at the following Gaelic words to find a bit of inspiration.
If you really love Scotland, you might want to start with the country’s Gaelic name – Alba. Of course, this doesn’t mean that you can’t get a little more specific with your names. If you’re in love with Scotland’s many lakes, you might instead choose Loch. Love the country’s forests? You might think about naming your dog Ainsley (woodland). Glen (valley) is, of course, another good name that can honor the landscape of Scotland, as is Bein (mountain).
Let’s say that you would rather choose a name that has something to do with your dog’s looks. Duff (dark) is a great name for a black dog, while a white dog might better be named Fiona. Does your dog have a reddish hue? If so, Roisin (or Rosheen) might be a good name for your little rose. If he or she is a little more feisty, though, Aidan (fire) might be a better bit. A tiny dog might be a great Bairn (baby), while a pretty dog could be Bean (fair). A great name for the second dog in a litter is Tavish (twin), while a dog who loves to bark could be a fantastic Effie (well-spoken).
If none of these seem to work, you might want to go with something a little more generic. Want to give a dog a great Gaelic name sight unseen? That’s simple – just call him or her Madra (dog)!
Clan and Family Names from Scotland
Another great way to find a good name for your pet is to look at different family names in Scotland. Not only does the English-speaking world have many different surnames derived from Scotland, but there are also many clans that lend their names to families all over the world. Below are just a few of these names that might help you to name your dog.
Let’s start with the Clans, as these large organizations are groups of families that all share a common ancestor. If you’re looking for something that looks a bit more like a first name, Boyd, Maxwell, Gordon, and Brodie can be great choices for naming your dog. If you’re looking for something a little more family-oriented, you might want to look at Fraser, Hamilton, Innes, Mackay, MacLeod, or Sinclair.
If surnames are a bit more important to you, you’ll have plenty of those with which you can work. The names that tend to be most popular are also those that work as first names, including Blair, Fletcher, Cameron, Graham, Lennox, Logan, Hunter, Mackenzie, Oliver, and Patton. Names that come from specific families, on the other hand, include Barclay, Campbell, and McGee.
Scottish Dog Names for Males
There are a number of Scottish names that make particularly good choices for male dogs. These names might refer to places or people, of course, but many also tend to refer to specific types of personality traits that have long been admired in Scotland. If you’re looking for a name for a male dog, you might want one of the names discussed below.
Archie, or Archibald, is one of the most popular dog names in the world and also one of the most popular Scottish names. Angus and Argyll are also quite popular, as are Blane, Clark, and Clyde. If you’re looking for something a bit more Scots, Finlay and Hamish will do, while Gavin, Neil, and Murdoch all role fairly easily off of tongues that are more used to speaking English.
Scottish Dog Names for Females
Female dog names that derive from Scotland are much like male dog names. Some are popular human names, while others refer to parts of the country. There are also many names that speak of a dog’s beauty or personality, while others have more to do with the culture of Scotland itself.
Maggie is another one of those dog names that tend to top lists, and it’s of Scottish origin. Aileen, Iona, and Rona are likewise popular. Bonnie is a great name for a pretty dog, while Nessie is a fun name for a swimmer. Lassie has a lot of classic appeal for many dog owners, while Shona, Sheena, and Tara all feel very Scottish. Rose and Piper are also popular names, and you simply can’t go wrong with naming your dog after the city of Aberdeen.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is a good Scottish name for a dog?
There are many ways to figure out a good Scottish name for a dog. You can start by looking at the places and people of Scotland for inspiration – names like Nessie or Loch are common, as are names like Argyll and Aberdeen. You can also look at words in Scots-Gaelic to get some ideas, or even at popular clan and family names from the country. Scotland has a long history and a storied culture, so the words that you can choose for a name are virtually limitless.
2. What is the Celtic word for dog?
Generally speaking, the word you’re looking for here is going to be madra. There are, however, a whole host of other specific words that mean similar things. Perhaps the most important one is Conan, which simply means ‘hound’. As you might expect, though, there are also plenty of regional variations that you can investigate if you are looking for a unique name for your dog and you want to ensure that you’re keeping to Gaelic roots with that name.
3. What are some unique names for dogs?
Unique dog names really vary. Your goal needs to be to find something that fits your dog’s personality, that sounds unique, and that is relatively easy for both you and for others to pronounce. Finding these names is harder than you might think, so it’s often worthwhile to investigate words in other languages to find a good name. Choosing a language like Gaelic can help you to repurpose a name that might otherwise sound terribly common into something that can stand out, so don’t be afraid to spend some time with a Gaelic dictionary in order to find a name you love.
4. What are good Scottish names?
There are many good Scottish names. The best way to start is by thinking about what you’re looking for. Are you looking for something that’s just generally Scottish? If so, names like Aberdeen or Scottie might do the trick. Do you prefer something that has to do with your dog? Why not try Bonnie or Lassie? If you like, you can even look at Gaelic words as a way to give your dog’s name a bit of unique flair. The real secret to finding good Scottish names isn’t to pick from a list, but rather to think about what you’re looking for in a name and then making a choice.