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Please Don’t Name Your Bird Dog That

Good training can overcome even the worst name for your dog.

A good name may not make your pup a better bird dog, but a solid name for your pooch will keep your hunting buddies off your back.

Got a new bird dog puppy at home?  Having trouble picking out that perfect name?  The name you choose says as much about the bird hunter as it does about the bird dog.  Choose wisely and you’ll be the envy of your hunting party.  Choose poorly . . . well, your hunting buddies won’t likely let you up for air.

I know that ragging on a hunter’s bird dog can lead to a fist fight.  If your dog is named one of the following below, then let me please apologize right now- 

A)    Yes, the performance of a dog is more important than its name. 

B)    Yes, you are probably more secure in your masculinity than I am and can indeed hold your head high as you call “Muffin” back to you with a rooster in her mouth.

C)    Yes, having a popular name isn’t a bad thing.  You probably did think of it first.

D)    Yes, my female dog has the name of retired male baseball player that last took the field almost 15 years ago (Trammell).  I am indeed living in the past.

E)     Yes, my bird dog has an affinity for skunks and is sprayed by them regularly.  I should probably have named her “Stinky.”

Without further adieu, here’s a short list of hunting dog names I would personally avoid. 


You’d think the problem for a pheasant hunter owning a dog named “Rooster” would be obvious, but I encounter a “Rooster” every year.  The problem with the name surfaces any time you hunt pheasants in a group.  The dog’s owner shouts “Rooster” only to have his entire hunting party jerk their heads and gun barrels to the sky only to see blue.  Meanwhile, the obedient “Rooster” returns to the oblivious owner as instructed.


Although naming your dog “Drake” doesn’t cause the same problem as “Rooster,” it is likely the most common dog name on the planet in today’s bird dog world.  I actually like the name, but “Drake” must represent 40 percent of the hunting dog world.  Coming in a close second in “commonly good” names are bird dogs named after an owner’s favorite brand of shotgun; “Remy,” “Winchester,” “Beretta,” and “Benelli” for example.   

Note: According to VPI Pet Insurance, the top 5 most common names for male dogs in 2009 were Max, Buddy, Rocky, Bailey, & Jake.  The top 5 most common names for female dogs in 2009 were Bella, Molly, Lucy, Maggie, & Daisy.

Rascal, Trouble, Dizzy, Tank, or Rampage

Ever met a dog that lived up to its name?  Well name your dog “Rascal” and I guarantee that bird dog will live up to all the negative connotations of being a rascal.

Buck, Huck, Luck, Puck, or Tuck

Yelling your dog’s name should never sound like a swear word.  Be careful about what rhymes with “Tuck.”


Head-over-heels for the gal you are married to, engaged to, or dating?  That’s great; but, draw the line at fluffy names for the family hunting dog.  Remember, you’re the one that’s gotta call the dog while afield with all your buddies around.  If your gal is a bird hunter too, then she’ll understand from the get-go.

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64 Responses to “Please Don’t Name Your Bird Dog That”

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  1. Grant Hatch says:

    My female Yellow Lab has always been sweet on me so, we call her Sugar. When we registered her we couldn’t remember exactly what the breeder had told us but we got it close. Her official name is Whisky Raiders Sugar and She’s an amazing hunter and when She’s not it’s Buger! I also had a nice surprise last Sunday while watching the BDC on the Outdoor Channel. There were two dog competing that turns out are realeted to Sugar. I checked her papers and seems her Grand Father is Rik’s Risky Raider. No wounder She hunts so well!

  2. Rich Boyd says:

    Yeah, when in doubt, name your male labrador something like “Mike.” Safe bet. I always thought, “Taxi” was a great name — you step out the door and yell, “Taxi-i-i-i!” Maybe with a hand in the air for effect. And, with a nod to “It’s a Wonderful Life,” I thought, “Savings and Loan” or “Bedford Falls” would be good names (ala Taxi) — upon seeing your wee doggy you yell, “Hello, Savings and Loan!” Or, “Hello, good ole Bedford Falls!” Creativity is to be encouraged, eh?

  3. Laura Adcock says:

    We have a female german short hair and we named her Bowdey. Her registered name is Bowdey get em up. We get a lot of crap for namin her a boy name. But the story behind it is that we were on our honeymoon and saw a town called Bodi(different spelling lol) but I said to my new hubby that the next new dog I wana name that. 2 days later we picked up Bowdey. We love her and is one of the best hunters out there. Thanks I really enjoyed this article :)

  4. Jason Adams says:

    I am an Army Field Artilleryman and so my naming convention follows that line. My two current black lab males are Gunner and Archer.

  5. Robert Gibbons says:

    My best hunting dog’s name was Camie (RIP). A female black lab registered as Camellia Cheeseburger, she had decent lineage on both sides. She was one of those labs that pointed (not trained to) on upland birds. I’ve hunted with some dogs that have funny names like Buckshot, Cash, and Milo.

    My current dog’s name is Lucy. How original.

  6. Diane says:

    My older setter is named Kota…my younger setter is Loki….both easy to say and can beller their names when needed!

  7. Joel says:

    My first Lab’s name was Deacon. And my current Lab’s name is Diesel. I like to think I’ve been fairly original.

  8. logan says:

    named my new brittany after the first one he had ever had Avery and was one of the best he had and so far my pup is living up to the name… my dad didnt know that there was a dog supply company call avery until i told him a few weeks ago

  9. Randy says:

    I obtained an AKC registered Brittany Spaniel that was already named Maggie Mae (must have been a Rod Stewart fan). She’s pushing 14 now and is retired. I didn’t realize Maggie was so common but I’ve talked to a lot of dog owners that have a dog so named. I named my new, pick of the litter, black Lab, Deke, as in decoy, hoping and thinking it was fairly original. Lo and behold, DU has a new lab pup with the same name. Ok, but the problem came when a new hunting buddy has a black lab named Zeke. I guess it really takes some thinking to name a pet something that won’t rhyme with something inappropriate or another dog’s name, and is actually original.

  10. Rachel says:

    A setter named Champ (RIP), GSP named Allegheny (Allie) and a new Orange Belton named Coach. We also liked Trigger, Bullet, Blaze, Shane, Jade, Guage, Scout, Teal and Madison! Names are hardest part!

  11. Mrs Killer says:

    Our 3-1/2 Y/O Hybrid Chocolate Lab is Gus. We just got a 6 week old Chesapeake we call Otis. Fact is, most of the time we call them Bubba and Chunk. Oh well.

  12. Blake says:

    I’m so tired of all of these names. I’ve always liked Sir Enchilada Von Ringworm

  13. Jen says:

    I like names a little less usual….I did have a Ben and a Dot but other than that…other Australian Shepherds were BJ, Pilot, Olga, Rondee, Justin, and Ridge….a mix named Jappeloup and another named Ikkus. Two chihuahuas named Eddie and Brie.

    My Dad had hunting beagles and said to never name a beagle Peanut…..lol….sounds like you are out in the woods calling your penis….ha ha

  14. Brittney says:

    Our 15 yo female chocolate lab is Reload. Working for a vet in a rural area I encountered many hunting dogs named, Remington, Mallard, Ruger, Browning, Buckshot etc. so, we wanted something original.

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