12 Top Dog Names of 2021
by Melody Keilig
With the plethora of popular dog names out there, you might be wondering about the top names your fellow dog lovers are using for their furbabies. Whether you’re adopting a dog in 2022 or curious to find your dog’s name on the list, close out this year by checking out the most popular female and male dog names of 2021!
1. Bella & Max
For female dogs, the name Bella remains number one for 2021! This name is the nickname for Isabella, which actually traces back to the name “Elizabeth.” The name Bella is more associated with the Italian word, bella, which translates to “beautiful.”
For male dogs, Max is the most recognizable name in pop culture. Almost every dog in TV series, movies, and other media is named Max. This name is short for Maximilian and Maxwell, which means “great” and “stream,” respectively.
2. Luna & Charlie
Luna is a beautiful, well-known name for female dogs. It adds a feeling of mystery, as it translates to “moon” in Latin. If you want to give your dog a popular, but unique name, Luna is a perfect match.
The short form of Charles, Charlie is an adorable name for a girl or boy dog. But it’s more popular among male dogs, which is fitting because the name means “man.” Charlie may be a very common name, but it’s still a perfect name for anyone who wants a simple name for their male dog.
3. Lucy & Milo
Lucy is the perfect “classy” name for a girl dog! Not only can it be a reference to Lucille Ball of “I Love Lucy,” but it also stands on its own well. This name’s meaning goes back to the middle ages, as the short form of Lucia which means “light.”
Milo is another recognizable name for boy dogs, being a mega-popular choice for many dog owners. This name means “gracious,” so it’s a great name for your sweet boy!
4. Daisy & Buddy
For a super sweet name, go with Daisy for a female dog! Everyone knows of the precious little flower of the same name, so add some of that sweetness for your pup. This name is also associated with youthfulness and class.
Buddy is simply a buddy, but that doesn’t make this name any less meaningful! This nickname originates from the word, “brother,” so it’s quite the honor to give your dog a name associated with family.
5. Lola & Rocky
For something unique, but recognizable, name your little girl “Lola.” This name is actually a short form of “Dolores,” which means “sorrow.” But don’t worry about the meaning bringing you down! Lola is associated with youthfulness, simplicity, and comedy.
Another funky name for a dog is Rocky, which gives a boy dog some sweetness around its rough edges. Plus, this name is also associated with Sylvester Salone’s character, Rocky Balboa, in the 1976 Rocky movie. This nickname comes from “Rocco,” which means “rest.”
6. Sadie & Bear
If you’re looking for a super sweet name for your female dog, but don’t want to name her something like “Princess” or “Lady,” the name Sadie is perfect. In fact, “Sadie” is a short form of “Sarah,” which translates to “princess,” “lady,” and “noblewoman.”
For a larger-than-life male dog, why not name him after one of the largest animals of the forest? Bear is a fun name for a dog, especially if they fit the description! Try this name for something simple, yet will make your dog stand out.
7. Molly & Leo
The name Molly may seem like a “basic” girl name, but it’s closely associated with simplicity, classiness, and youthfulness. It’s considered a wholesome name that’s also memorable, so if that’s a winning combo in your book, consider using this name.
If you’re into astrology, Leo is a perfect name for a boy dog. Especially if your dog’s fur is as golden as a lion’s fur coat! In fact, the name translates directly from “lion” in Latin. This name gives feelings of strength and class.
8. Bailey & Duke
For a sweet, wholesome name, check out Bailey. This name is common but can be made more unique with modern spellings like Baylee. It’s closely associated with strength and youthfulness.
If you’re looking for a masculine name inspired by royalty, Duke is the perfect fit. It translates from the Latin word, dux, which means “leader.” Most people consider it an “upper class” name with its royal connection, so give your boy a strong, high-class name with Duke!
9. Stella & Teddy
It may seem like a very simple name, but Stella actually means “star” in Latin. This name is considered classy and refined, so it’s a perfect name for female dogs who love the spotlight on them!
Short for Theodore or Edward, Teddy is a simple but sweet nickname for a male dog. We all know of the Teddy Bear, so why not use a cute name for your dog? Teddy was also a nickname for Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th president of the United States.
10. Maggie & Tucker
Maggie is a common nickname for Margaret, which means “pearl.” It was very popular in England and Wales during the 1920s, 30s, and 40s. Maggie is considered the youthful version of Margaret, so it’s quite popular with dog owners.
The name Tucker has an interesting origin, coming from the occupation of a cloth fuller. This described a person whose job was to clean and thicken raw cloth by pounding it with force. From its unique origin, Tucker is associated with strength and roughness.
11. Chloe & Beau
Chloe is a super sweet name that is perfect for a spunky girl dog! Its meaning comes from the Greek word for “green shoot,” referring to the growth of green plants during springtime. It’s considered a wholesome, delicate name that’s also simple to spell and remember.
Beau is a beautiful name for a boy name, in fact, that’s exactly what it means in French! It’s thought of as an upper-class, refined name for men, so give your dog a unique name with an interesting translation.
12. Penny & Oliver
Do you love the name Penelope, but don’t want to commit to the unique spelling? Penny is an adorable nickname and super easy to remember! Funny enough, it means “duck,” but you can reference Penny from The Big Bang Theory with this name.
For the last name on this list, Oliver means “olive tree” in Latin. It was a popular name in the Middle Ages but went out of style until the 1800s, when Charles Dickens published his famous novel, Oliver Twist, in 1838.
We may have to say goodbye to 2021, but we don’t have to wave these popular names away any time soon! Did you find your dog’s perfect name on this list? Let us know below!