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April 26, 2011 3:30 AM   Subscribe

Please help name my Italian Greyhound puppy before he develops a major identity crisis.

I totally know this falls under 'Questions to avoid', but I wouldn't be asking if I wasn't desperate. Plus, the green always seems to deliver the goods on naming threads...

So here goes - I have finally taken the leap and got myself a brand spanking new Italian Greyhound. Here are some pictures of him being all adorable (1, 2, 3)

He is nine weeks old now, and I have had him for about a week, in which time I have failed miserably in finding a suitable name, which I attribute to simply majorly overthinking it. It started two weeks before I got him, where I would literally be shouting random names alone in my apartment to see what sounded 'right'. Then I got it down to a shortlist... He was Sidney for a day, but that got shortened to Sid, which sounded too much like the command for sit. Then he was Lord Julius for another day, but the three syllables felt a bit much in Julius. Then he was Ignatz, which didn't really gel, and then finally Igor, which was met with lukewarm response from my friends and family.

I've probably read the 'List of Fictional Animals' page from Wikipedia over twelve times, and endured over a thousand pop-up ads from baby name sites. So here I turn to you, faithful reader, for help!

I don't really have any major guidelines, except I think two syllables would be best for training purposes. I also would like to avoid any overtly 'human' names, or anything distinctly italian.

Bonus points for tying into either literary fiction, modern art, independent comics, architecture, Judaism, or Apple products. Double points for names with a slightly dark bend. You can probably see why I am having trouble here.

Thank you for any and all suggestions!

(also, not to threadjack my own post, but if anyone has ever raised one of these little guys, and wants to share tips, please mefimail me!)
posted by LongDrive to Pets & Animals (72 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
posted by splout at 3:47 AM on April 26, 2011

posted by vitabellosi at 3:50 AM on April 26, 2011

Luciano (lucie for short)
The Count (count for short)
Bluey (Mr Blue for long)
Mojo (Mr Mojojojo or Mr Mojonono when he's misbehaving)
posted by vitabellosi at 3:56 AM on April 26, 2011

Pop! Just started riffing without reading your full post!

posted by vitabellosi at 3:57 AM on April 26, 2011

I know it's not two syllabuls, but I really like Moriarty for a dog.

Or Erik.
posted by londonmark at 4:08 AM on April 26, 2011

If my first reaction is anything to go by on seeing those pictures, you should name him "Squeeeee!".

Seriously, I suggest Miro.
posted by essexjan at 4:18 AM on April 26, 2011 [1 favorite]

posted by Gilbert at 4:18 AM on April 26, 2011

You know, of course, that any name you give him now will simply devolve into "Diddums".

And I'm very sorry, please forgive, but adorable pup as depicted in photo 1 is a "Scooter".

I give my cats lovely, formal names. They don't stick. Olivier became "Moo", Matthew became "Wumbley" and the current dictator is known as "Nose".
posted by likeso at 4:20 AM on April 26, 2011 [1 favorite]

posted by sciencegeek at 4:21 AM on April 26, 2011

posted by From Bklyn at 4:23 AM on April 26, 2011

I had a dog once and his name was Boo.
posted by dougrayrankin at 4:28 AM on April 26, 2011 [1 favorite]

Corriera or Pullman

bus in Italian
posted by Not Supplied at 4:34 AM on April 26, 2011

posted by at the crossroads at 4:35 AM on April 26, 2011

At the risk of offense to MeFite Gaspode, I'd name him Gaspode.
posted by workerant at 4:36 AM on April 26, 2011

Avon Barksdale would be a great dog name.
posted by Metroid Baby at 4:39 AM on April 26, 2011 [9 favorites]

Best answer: I always wanted to call my dog "Stella" so I can yell it across a park in a Marlon Brando voice, but it doesn't work for a boy dog. [And believe me, if you have an Italian Greyhound, you are gonna be yelling for it over vast distances - use a lead for a looooooong time before you go to open parks is my whippet-owner advice]

I like the name "Eliot" or "Donny" [so you can say, "Shut the fuck up Donny" or "You're out of your element" etc]

Apparently names with an 's' sound are good for dogs and training so I think Avon Barksdale is a winner.
posted by honey-barbara at 4:40 AM on April 26, 2011 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: Wow. 12 suggestions in less than an hour. You guys rock! Again, the bonus point criteria is just that, so feel free to go outside those suggestions. I know lots of people have a secret stash of pet names for future pets, so don't be shy ;) I think the biggest problem as well is that every time I hear a name, I think of the first thing that comes to mind. Mojo for example, I always think of this. Keep em coming though!
posted by LongDrive at 4:42 AM on April 26, 2011

Paulo, which is Italian for "small".
posted by easy, lucky, free at 4:46 AM on April 26, 2011

posted by BostonTerrier at 4:48 AM on April 26, 2011 [1 favorite]

Try this list of Apple codenames - what Apple called certain products in-house while under development.

In terms of indie comics, Spuckler (from Mark Criley's Akiko series) is a charming character, and Spuckler is a fun word to say. He's a lazy rogue, and not too smart, but loyal and with a heart of gold, which from what I know of Italian Greyhounds, fits perfectly.
posted by Slap*Happy at 4:57 AM on April 26, 2011

Looks like a Hugo or a Fezzick to me.
posted by Jeanne at 4:58 AM on April 26, 2011

posted by lobstah at 5:22 AM on April 26, 2011

posted by lemniskate at 5:30 AM on April 26, 2011

This dog needs a big, important, I'M HUGE name.

Andre (the Giant)
Fezzick, indeed
Rowdy Roddy

If you like MST3K, then any of the various names from Space Mutiny (Blast Hardcheese, Punk Chunkman, Big McLargeHuge, etc)
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 5:41 AM on April 26, 2011

posted by AuntieRuth at 5:42 AM on April 26, 2011

Best answer: Italian name: Pronto

Non-Italian name with a twist of Judaism: Levi (the Italian name this dog is Piccolo Levriero Italiano).
posted by MuffinMan at 5:46 AM on April 26, 2011

Dash / Dashiel
posted by bluedaisy at 5:59 AM on April 26, 2011

Thoreau sounds fitting.
Though this is coming from someone who named her own dog Flapjack..
posted by xbeautychicx at 6:00 AM on April 26, 2011

Seconding 'Dash'. He's got Incredible written all over him.
posted by yoga at 6:14 AM on April 26, 2011

He's got a brown coat, you could call him Malcolm or Captain Mal.
posted by TooFewShoes at 6:15 AM on April 26, 2011 [4 favorites]

My brother's IG is named Zeppy. It works well.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 6:24 AM on April 26, 2011

Santa's Little Helper. Or, Mr. Santos L. Halper. Or, Rover, Fido, Rex, Spot, Rover II, Fido II, Rex II, Cleo, Dave, Jay, Paul, Branford, Dave II, Jay II, Paul II, Branford II, Sleepy, Dopey, Grumpy, Donner, Blitzen, Grumpy II, King, Queenie, Prince and The Puppy Formerly Known As Prince.

That all out of the way, I do understand that an Italian name is not required, but I have always wanted to name a dog Pasquale, just because I like it - and the timing is perfect for a name like that (and it has a Hebrew connection). He could be Mr. Pasquale Anerable Pinkypaws for short.

Otherwise, thirding Dash.
posted by peagood at 6:42 AM on April 26, 2011


posted by ghostbikes at 6:42 AM on April 26, 2011

Response by poster: Oh man, there's some contenders here... Honey Barbara's line is actually making me reconsider Don... Completely hilarious, especially since I find myself already uttering those two phrases a bit. Any more in that vein? ;)
posted by LongDrive at 6:48 AM on April 26, 2011

Bill Pullman or Mr Brown.
posted by kcm at 6:58 AM on April 26, 2011

Just shared your pup's photos with a nearby kindergartener, who suggests Razor.
posted by bluedaisy at 7:07 AM on April 26, 2011

posted by SomeTrickPony at 7:10 AM on April 26, 2011

I love Pronto and I think that's what his name should be.

Other suggestions:
(yes, I watch Formula One, why do you ask?)
posted by biscotti at 7:17 AM on April 26, 2011

St. Albans

Cella - main room of a temple
Gable (Gabe for short)

Maimonides or Rambam

Modern Art
posted by MasonDixon at 7:32 AM on April 26, 2011

Avon Barksdale.
posted by Threeway Handshake at 7:32 AM on April 26, 2011

Since he's an Italian Greyhound, I love the idea of an Italian name. Particularly one that sounds grand, since he's rather little! My dad called our Shih Tzu Alex "Big Al" which I thought was hysterical.

How about Luigi?
posted by radioamy at 7:34 AM on April 26, 2011

That doggie is a FABIO.
posted by raisingsand at 7:54 AM on April 26, 2011

I would call him Jules.
posted by that girl at 7:57 AM on April 26, 2011

I also like "Spike" [the broody existentialist from Cowboy Bebop - they say "Spik-eh" which sounds cool; also has a faint architectural aura]

"Roark" if you do the architectural thing? or:


Or smug literary: Halvard Solness - the architect in Ibsen's The Master Builder

If you have already done Ignatz and Igor - what about "Iggy"[Pop] especially since your little pup will grow into a very lean dog.

And don't worry about the changing names thing. I don't think they really get it anyway. Our two dogs have no real idea who they are, they respond to either name.
posted by honey-barbara at 8:30 AM on April 26, 2011

I'm agreeing with the folks who think his name should be Italian.

And I think it should be Enzo, in homage to the wonderful dog in The Art of Racing in the Rain. Even though that dog was a golden retriever.
posted by dlugoczaj at 8:31 AM on April 26, 2011 [1 favorite]

It's not dark in the least, but I'd call that dog "Muffin."
posted by Gucky at 8:44 AM on April 26, 2011

He looks an awful lot like a Spanky to me, tbh. Or possibly Rupert.
posted by elizardbits at 8:48 AM on April 26, 2011

Fulvi is Italian for tawny.
posted by brujita at 8:56 AM on April 26, 2011

posted by kestrel251 at 9:40 AM on April 26, 2011 [1 favorite]

Rooster. After Rooster Cogburn in True Grit.
I call my roommate's cat "Noodle" and sometimes "Noodle head" when he is being especially cute.
posted by polly_dactyl at 9:47 AM on April 26, 2011

We've got a gigantic whippet that is often mistaken for a full greyhound due to his size. If the puppy-growing phase is anything like what I witnessed, a good name will be Scrambles, doubly so if you have hardwood floors. Watching that dog handle stairs was like seeing an armfull of broom handles and tent poles get dumped downhill.
posted by FatherDagon at 9:56 AM on April 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


Also you could call him Deo and then shout the Banana Boat Song across the dog park.
posted by elsietheeel at 10:12 AM on April 26, 2011 [2 favorites]

Seconding Rupert, also offering Dartanian, Milo, and Mister Mister.
posted by patronuscharms at 10:21 AM on April 26, 2011

He's SO a Milo.
posted by Specklet at 10:21 AM on April 26, 2011

I've got an italian greyhound myself and his name is Chuck.
posted by marais at 10:48 AM on April 26, 2011

posted by iguanapolitico at 11:06 AM on April 26, 2011

I have always wanted to name a dog Kaboom and/or Boomer (think how much fun it would be to yell!). I know someone with a lovely cat named Yawp so I think there's money in the sound effects bank with ears like your little guy has on him! Other pet bank names: Mochi, Simon, Sherlock (we have a Watson), and Douglas

II-E (call him Twoee)
Gus (as in Sweet tooth, I love grey hounds but they look vaguely deer like to me)

Enjoy your new friend, what a cutie!
posted by nelleish at 11:17 AM on April 26, 2011

Fawn, especially in that last photo where he is all curled up. He looks like a baby deer.

In Italian, fawn is "cerbiatto" which I think is cool and can be shortened to cerbie
posted by rmless at 11:17 AM on April 26, 2011

Officer Pup, obviously.
posted by milk white peacock at 11:45 AM on April 26, 2011

posted by astapasta24 at 11:50 AM on April 26, 2011

Mr. Pinky Paws, Pinky for short.
posted by Lizzle at 1:09 PM on April 26, 2011

Chico, as in the Italian Marx Brother.
posted by cmoj at 2:43 PM on April 26, 2011

(Pronounced Chick-o, not cheeco, and no he wasn't really Italian, but the character was.)
posted by cmoj at 2:45 PM on April 26, 2011

posted by calgirl at 5:05 PM on April 26, 2011

posted by oflinkey at 6:24 PM on April 26, 2011


(I know, three syllables, but still... also I don't know if this detracts form the name or adds to it, but he kind of looks like Finnigan as in Casey and Finnigan, no?)

(And then on walks, when he insists on sniffing a tree and you want to keep moving you'll be waiting for Godot...)
posted by to recite so charmingly at 7:57 PM on April 26, 2011

Machiavelli, Machi (Mocker) (Velli-belly)
Guicciardin (Guicci)



Cordo (for Lucius Vitruvius Cordo, a Roman architect)
Pirro (for Pirro Ligorio--another architect)
Berty (for Umberto Nobile--polar explorer)

Moochy (Scaramouche)
Don Camillo

Sergi (Sergio Leone)

Rotti (Pavarotti)
Tito (for Tito Schipa)
Caffe (for Caffarelli--a historical contralto castrato) ouch
posted by BlueHorse at 8:30 PM on April 26, 2011

posted by squid in a people suit at 9:18 PM on April 26, 2011

posted by bendy at 9:23 PM on April 26, 2011


Actually, all of those together! "Hello there. Pleased to meet you. I am Walter Newton Ford Otto Beans, II."
posted by tinamonster at 10:50 PM on April 26, 2011

from a dog loving friend. Would love to hear what he's named

Options for the greyhound part (ie very speedy)

• Mercury (Merk for short)
• Jeter

For the Italian part

• Bello
• Guapo (basically translates to “gorgeous”)

I kind of like Bambi…. Just cause… that’s who he looks like,. Like a gorgeous little fawn
posted by TravellingCari at 3:36 PM on April 27, 2011

Response by poster: So! Just an update for any interested parties, I decided to go with Levi - MuffinMan's tie-in to the italian name of the breed, plus the fact he was in a litter of three, AND Levi was the amazing principal of East Dillon High. Hugo and Donny were definitely runner-ups though. Thank you again so much everyone for your very insightful and downright helpful responses.
posted by LongDrive at 7:20 PM on April 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

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