What are your funny pet names? As the father of four energetic girls, there are certain duties that fall under my paternal jurisdiction. Some tasks are very pleasant, like teaching them how to ride a bike and some are not so wonderful, like parallel parking instruction.
Somewhere between the “first two step with your daughter at her wedding dance” and following up on “Just wait till your father gets home!” comes final approval of pet’s name. As the unofficial head of household, who is specifically assigned those chores no one else desires to do; pet name approval is one of the thankless tasks a father must undertake.
In truth, I only become involved with pets that may come in contact with the public at large; for example a dog, a cat, or a horse. I do not offer input into the naming of white mice or rats, hamsters, guppies, hermit crabs, or goldfish. These are personal pets normally housed in a specific daughter’s room. These types of pets obviously don’t have anything to do with me unless it involves a funeral service or the final disposition of a body. See pet insurance.
It is the naming of the pets that interact with my neighbors that I do care most about. In that role as pet name arbiter, I have one cardinal rule that must always be observed. Whatever pet’s name is proposed to me, it must be easily yelled out the backdoor of the house without causing a civil disturbance! For instance, yelling “Tom” or “Tommy” to call a cat home would be okay. Screaming the name “Thadeous Sweet Cheeks” might raise an eyebrow in my suburbia neighborhood. Likewise while yelling “Shut-up Ronald Wilson Reagan” at a barking dog may not endear you to the local Chamber of Commerce members, but telling “Jimmy Earl Carter” to hurry up and do his duty might not be so bad.
To help my children find names that fit the criteria, I’ve put together exemplars of names that on their own might be “cute” but fail miserably at the back door scream test.
Scream Test Rejects
- Puss n Boots
- Itchy Butt
- Margaret Thatcher (Out of respect for the Iron Lady)
- Tiny (I don’t care how big or small it is)
- Boo or Boo-Boo
- Officer Cat
- Officer Dog
- Anything with the words “Fluff” or “Puff”
While some names may seem like innocent fun, imagine calling the police department to tell them that “Officer Cat” is stuck up a tree or “Little Queenie” was run over by your neighbor’s wife.
Finally if you ever are faced with having to report a missing “Boo-Boo”, remember I warned you about the importance of a good name.
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