It is just one of your holiday games.
January 22, 2012 6:49 PM   Subscribe

I have a newish cat. He seems to be pretty permanent, so now he needs a name. At the shelter his name was Perry, or maybe Terry. I don't like either name. Photos and details inside.

I already have Matilda (10), a cat who hates all other cats and most people, and Conrad (5), a cat who adores Matilda and hates every human in the world except me. I adopted Perry/Terry (7?) in order to give Conrad somecat else to lavish his affection on. This has mostly worked: Conrad and Perry/Terry get along well, especially post catnip, Matilda doesn't mind Perry/Terry, and Conrad chases Matilda much less often. Perry/Terry loves everyone and also laundry and hangs out during parties.

P/T is a very large, very fluffy cat. He forgives me when I wash him. He likes bathtubs. He sleeps on/takes over my bed. He has some kind of weird lip problem.

I only want people names that can be shortened. Matilda gets Til, usually; Conrad gets Stupid Jerkface. But so it goes: I could call him Connie, or Raddie, and sometimes do. On those rare occasions he is not being a jerkface.

(I am hoping that the quantity of cat photos makes up for the fact that they're low quality.)
posted by jeather to Pets & Animals (56 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Sir Terry Pratchet
posted by Jacen at 6:55 PM on January 22, 2012

He looks like a Hans to me. But that does not shorten. So perhaps Hansel.
posted by oflinkey at 6:55 PM on January 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

He looks just like my Lumis, a Maine Coon. How about Jackson? Jack for short. Or Abraham/Abe.
posted by haplesschild at 7:00 PM on January 22, 2012

Response by poster: For what it's worth, Matilda is named after the Roald Dahl book, and Conrad after the newspaper magnate, as he was adopted the day of the guilty verdict. When I am formal, I call him Lord Blackcat.
posted by jeather at 7:00 PM on January 22, 2012

A handsome man like that needs a delicate, dignified name like Alexander or Julian.
posted by bleep at 7:14 PM on January 22, 2012 [2 favorites]

If you're a fan of Sir Terry's books, name him after one of the Discworld characters. Perhaps Mortimer or Carrot. Or even Visit-The-Infidel-With-Explanatory-Pamphlets.
posted by Hactar at 7:14 PM on January 22, 2012 [2 favorites]

Charlie, to go with Matilda.
posted by Gordafarin at 7:21 PM on January 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

So cute! I am jealous, I wish I had a cat. I like Sir Terry Pratchett as was suggested above.
posted by starpoint at 7:30 PM on January 22, 2012

It is just one of your holiday games, you say?

Well, the answer depends on what you're quoting. He's surely either Thomas Stearns "T. S." Eliot... or Sir Peter Ustinov, a.k.a. The Old Man.

(From Wikipedia: Gene Siskel cited [Logan's Run]'s "terrible performances with the exception of Peter Ustinov, whose cameo is expanded to a ridiculous length because he is the only decent thing in the movie."
posted by argonauta at 7:34 PM on January 22, 2012

It's convoluted but here goes: You call him P/T which makes me think P.T. Barnum. Having three cats would kind of be like a circus and you've gotten him to run the show more smoothly. Just like a ringmaster. P.T. Barnum could easily be shortened to Barny, Num, Nums, Num Nuts, Barry, Petey, or P.T.B. He's also grey and big which makes me think of elephants.
posted by TooFewShoes at 7:34 PM on January 22, 2012 [18 favorites]

Seconding Jackson. He just looks like a Jackson to me.
posted by SisterHavana at 7:35 PM on January 22, 2012

Dactyl, which can be shortened to Dac, or Dax.
posted by Prof Iterole at 7:36 PM on January 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

Agreed with TooFewShoes...I like PT! =)
posted by PeppahCat at 7:37 PM on January 22, 2012

Reginald jumped out to me though I don't have any nifty explanations for it. Other than that I'm really liking the PT Barnum suggestion (and explanation!)
posted by brilliantine at 7:39 PM on January 22, 2012

Walter, I think. Shorten to Walt and you'll be able to sing "Walt and Matilda" to the Waltzing Matilda song. Conrad may feel left out, but if he's a Stupid Jerkface, he'll probably be ok with that.
posted by BlooPen at 7:43 PM on January 22, 2012 [3 favorites]

We just got a new kitty, and went through a round of naming. Our new friend is now Milo, so I am offering up my first choice: Alistair. Al for short. He's lovely. Enjoy him whatever his name turns out to be.
posted by Biblio at 7:45 PM on January 22, 2012

Marlowe, perhaps, for the eminent Christopher Marlowe? Or the name I had picked out for a cat years before getting one, which should have suited my cat just fine but for some reason didn't: Aristophanes.
posted by AthenaPolias at 7:48 PM on January 22, 2012

Response by poster: Such wonderful ideas. I have to exclude, on grounds of family members or other family pets with those names: Alex, Charlie, Sam, Gus, Allan, Peter, Nigel, Eugene, Henry, Jeffrey, Gabriel, Patrick, Nicholas, Paul, Daniel, Peter, and any name that is nicknamed Al or Hal.
posted by jeather at 7:49 PM on January 22, 2012

My partner says "Meldrake," for whatever reason; you could shorten it to "Mel."

That's a gorgeous Maine coon cat.
posted by infinitywaltz at 7:59 PM on January 22, 2012

So it's a pretty standard WASPY move to use the nicknames Trip or Trey for someone whose name is the Third, regardless of their actual name. I'm also a fan of ridiculous names for cats. And he looks fancy. So I'd go with something like The Right Honorable Cattelsford III and call him Trip for short.
posted by allen.spaulding at 8:04 PM on January 22, 2012 [3 favorites]

my second bird, who is in a similar love triangle to your cat, I have named Dr. Benway. Ben for short. It might work.
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 8:24 PM on January 22, 2012

Oh, he's gorgeous! I'm partial to both medium long-haired cats and gray cats. Here are a couple suggestions that I think fit your criteria, off the top of my head....

Dustin (Dusty)
Jasper (Jazz or Jazzy for short)
Basil (the English pronunciation, not the herb. Baz or Bazzy for short)
Chester (Chessie for short)
Gabriel (Gabe)
Oliver (Ollie)
Calvin (Cal)
posted by Squee at 8:29 PM on January 22, 2012

Ooops! Well scratch "Gabriel/Gabe" off my list. I only just now saw your last comment that excluded that name; my apologies!
posted by Squee at 8:31 PM on January 22, 2012

Leopold. Leo for short.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:48 PM on January 22, 2012 [2 favorites]

I've been trying to get someone, ANYONE, to name their cat "Hammbone" after Mr. John Hamm. "Hammbone" fits your shortening: Hamm, Hammy, Bone, Boner, H-Bone, Hammer, Hammslice ...
posted by ronofthedead at 8:50 PM on January 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

I'd calling him Whisk (short for 'Whiskers' for obvious reasons....) but I absolutely love love LOVE the Barnum suggestion - both for the P/T source and the three ring circus reference.

Barney it is! Or Barns...
posted by matty at 8:57 PM on January 22, 2012

I think he looks like a Harley. I guess he could be Harlequin if you need a long 'official' version . . .
posted by bluesky78987 at 9:02 PM on January 22, 2012

Randolph (Randy)
Rudolf (Rudy)
Humphrey (Humpty)
Hubert (Hugh)
Elliott (Ell)
Don Gato (Don)
Quentin (Q)
Percival (Percy)
posted by carmicha at 9:22 PM on January 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

Jamie (Jam)
posted by arcticseal at 9:39 PM on January 22, 2012

He looks like my pal Jasper. Jass!
posted by a humble nudibranch at 9:40 PM on January 22, 2012

If he, like your other cats, hated nearly all people, I would suggest Henry, Louis, or H.L., for Mr. Mencken. But you've already ruled out Henry and you don't say whether P/T is as misanthropic as your other kitties.

Douglas Adams was very fond of the bath.
posted by gingerest at 9:44 PM on January 22, 2012

I'm going to second Marlowe. Marlie for short. And this post sets a new standard for photos.
posted by bryon at 9:47 PM on January 22, 2012

He looks like a Maurice to me.
posted by pickypicky at 9:48 PM on January 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

I'm going to put forth my vote to name the cat McMurdo!

After the famous McMurdo Sound!
posted by cassini at 10:26 PM on January 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

second Jaspar/Jazz - Jaspar is sufficiently dignified and Jazz is fun to say.
posted by metahawk at 10:32 PM on January 22, 2012

That is a dignified cat. Look at those eyebrows.

Somehow "Wylis" jumped into my head. But there are great suggestions upthread. "Maurice" is killer. Randolph and Quentin would also do well.
posted by fingersandtoes at 10:36 PM on January 22, 2012

Admiral Cuddlesworth, that's what Meredith recommends.
posted by jrb223 at 10:48 PM on January 22, 2012

Totoro. You could call him To or Ro or Toto.
posted by corey flood at 10:52 PM on January 22, 2012

He's adorable, and I'm sure he has some Maine Coon in him (hence his love of bathtubs and laundry and taking over your bed. My Maine Coon, Cheddar is just like that).

I have some ideas for names for you, but I have to say that he looks old enough to know his own name, and if he is used to going by Perry or Terry, changing his name now might not be such a good idea. I mean, I get that you are not fond of his name and wouldn't have chosen it yourself, but he's old enough that he probably knows to come when he hears that ERRY sound.

Okay, that being said:

I would personally name him Pterry, because I love Pratchett. I also love Barnum or Barney for the P/T association. But neither works for the single syllable you want.


Joel, because he is Grey (and Joel Grey was born Joel KATZ. Coincidence? I think not).

There's also some old movie named The Grey Man, and the main character is Albert FISH. Cats love Fish! Call him Albert, but go with Bert, since you don't want another Al.

Since he likes the ERRY sound, you could call him Barry, or Bear for short! He looks like a nice, cuddly bear.
posted by misha at 10:52 PM on January 22, 2012

Oscar Wilde (Os)
posted by sugarbomb at 10:54 PM on January 22, 2012

Phineas? Could shorten to Fin or Finny?

They're all lovely, lovely cats. Thanks so much for the pics!
posted by angiep at 11:19 PM on January 22, 2012

Aw. He looks like a Steven. Call him Teevie for short?
posted by mochapickle at 11:21 PM on January 22, 2012

Such a beautiful dignified cat!

Bentley (fancy car)
Royce (as in the car, again)
Ashley (for his color, Ashley is traditionally a man's name)
Leopold - Leo for short

Mao Tse Tung - Mouse for short
posted by JujuB at 11:29 PM on January 22, 2012

Lots of good suggestions here.

But I asked my cat Al what your cat's name is.

He said your cat's name is "Robert".

So looks like you'll have to go with that.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 11:57 PM on January 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

posted by cogat at 1:50 AM on January 23, 2012

He likes laundry and might be called Perry?

My vote is Persil, aka LeChat in France.
posted by MuffinMan at 2:55 AM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

Perry/Terry sounds laid back and friendly.

Bubba if he's big.

Magnus if he's not.
posted by The ____ of Justice at 3:31 AM on January 23, 2012

Response by poster: I do say he's friendly. He loves people. He likes to sit on, with, or near them. He thinks quiet parties with all sorts of strangers are awesome. He likes both Conrad and Matilda. He's just very easygoing.

Yeah, he's Maine Coon-ish. Half, maybe, because he's not as big and fluffy as a Maine Coon usually is, though he is big and fluffy. He was apparently found outside, then lived in a shelter for three years where he was terrified and miserable. He's turned right around. He doesn't actually know his name, he mostly follows me around all the time anyhow.

Right now I am liking Barnum, as long as I can stop seeing a giant purple dinosaur when I call him Barney, or Joel Greycat, because it ever so nicely follows the Conrad Blackcat theme, plus Joel Grey is a more awesome person than Conrad Black. But there are a lot of very good suggestions here.
posted by jeather at 5:22 AM on January 23, 2012

If you are a Pratchett fan, it seems obvious that he should be pterry. I mean, c'mon. The universe is already telling you this.

Otherwise, he looks like a Raoul to me. He's cute enough to eat.
posted by bonehead at 6:14 AM on January 23, 2012 [2 favorites]

Best answer: If he's a Maine Coon, you could call him George. George Cooney.
posted by wabbittwax at 6:22 AM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

Oh oh oh I love boneheads idea for pterry. But then I am a dyed in the wool Terry Pratchett fangrrrrl, so that may not count. PT Barnum is also a great name. Could you expand on the Terry thing and call him Terrance. It is a lovely formal sounding name.
posted by wwax at 7:15 AM on January 23, 2012

He could be Theodore... ask him about it.
posted by maggieb at 8:41 AM on January 23, 2012

Right now I am liking Barnum, as long as I can stop seeing a giant purple dinosaur when I call him Barney,

Start watching How I Met Your Mother, and any purple associations with that name will poof! right out of your head.

But also, seconding Pterry.
posted by Gordafarin at 8:48 AM on January 23, 2012 [2 favorites]

Nthing Pterry, for geeky win. You can pronounce the P, like Ptunia.
posted by nicebookrack at 9:13 AM on January 23, 2012

Well, P/T made me think "Petey" but I guess you can't do that because of the disqualified names of family member's pets. So that leaves T/P. Here TeePee! Good kitty.
posted by motsque at 10:21 AM on January 23, 2012

Response by poster: I have tried out a bunch of names (not a Pratchett fan so Pterry and related were out). Joel just doesn't fit, I couldn't stop singing the stupid Barney is a dinosaur song when I called him that (though it would probably have won otherwise, despite the HIMYM associations), I like my cat too much to name him after a meth dealer, so George it is, because George Cooney made me laugh out loud.
posted by jeather at 6:43 PM on January 24, 2012 [1 favorite]

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