Bringing home a new dog is an exciting and eventful time. There are so many factors to consider and boxes to check to help ensure the new member of your family feels comfortable and settles in well.
One of the most important and often overlooked parts of adopting a new dog is naming it. Shakespeare famously asked, “What’s in a name?” and the answer is quite a lot for canines. A dog’s name should fit his or her unique characteristics and personality, as you and your family use it for years to come.
When it comes to Shih Tzus, these little dogs with big personalities can make a welcome addition to most homes. Small dogs generally have the longest life spans, so you want to make sure that you choose a name you will adore for the long haul.
Popular Dog Names
Because Shih Tzus are small, furry, and often feisty little dogs, the names chosen by their humans often have equal amounts of personality. Here are the most popular Shih Tzu dog names to consider naming the new addition to your family.
Did you notice that most of these dog names are recycled human names? Shih Tzus are happy, outgoing, affectionate little dogs who were bred for the sole purpose of human companionship.
Because of this, they often latch on to one person they choose as their favorite and can develop into a Velcro dog or a dog that prefers to stay by his or her favorite person’s side constantly. Perhaps because they provide such good companionship and fill that void in our lives, it’s easy to elevate them to near-human status by giving them human names.
Coat Color-Based Dog Names
Another source of inspiration for naming your Shih Tzu can be coat color. Shih Tzus have long, thick coats that need lots of care and attention and can be groomed and cut in several different styles. They can also come in many different color combinations.
Full back and white coats are pretty common, along with the gold coat and black mask combination, red or red brindle, deep chocolate, silver or lavender, and any combination of these. With all the color combinations available, your dog’s coloring is unique, and the name inspired by it should be, too.
Quite a few of these names are food-based as well—did you notice? Perhaps a color-matched, sweet treat-based name would be perfect for a cute Shih Tzu companion who loves to beg at your feet or dance around for a bite of whatever you’re eating.
Breed Size Dog Names
They can grow up to 11 inches tall and be as large as 16 pounds. With their entertaining antics and friendly faces, their pint-sized stature is just another defining characteristic that can help inspire a unique name.
These small dog names are sure to strike a chord when you see your precious new puppy or tiny friend for the first time. However, if your sense of humor is more on the sarcastic side, you might go the complete opposite way when choosing a size-based name for a small dog. Who doesn’t enjoy a little irony every now and then?
Most of these big-dog and ironic names also have the connotation of a big, tough personality. This can fit well with small dogs since they often tend to believe and act like huge guard dogs.
Shih Tzus can be very protective, territorial, and alert. And like many small dogs, their bark is truly worse than their bite. They can make a lot of noise when they get worked up, and it can often deter intruders. So even if you choose to go with an ironic big dog name, you might find in time that it suits your new Shih Tzu family member even better than you originally expected.
Personality-Based Dog Names
These loving little dogs were bred in China and were originally called “lion dogs” for their lion-like facial features. They were bred for the Chinese emperor’s palace as a verbal guard dog that would bark when anyone approached. As such, they were a town crier of sorts. Of course, their status as companions was cemented soon afterward.
Their personalities, while feisty, are also loving and friendly. They love following their favorite people from room to room and are playful and clever, always ready to enact a shenanigan to draw attention and make their family laugh.
In addition to this, Shih Tzus are also intelligent, but their stubbornness can sometimes reduce training success. However, these little dogs are also fiercely loyal and outgoing, ready both to make friends and protect their surroundings.
Names inspired by your dog’s unique personality often seem to fit the best in the long run. Of course, it can take a little while to start to see your new pup’s personality emerge. Until then, browse this list of personality-based dog names to help you decide which might fit your dog’s unique traits.
If your pooch turns out to be a sprinter, a brainiac, or a class clown, we’ve got you covered. Any of these characteristics and many more can inspire unique and personalized names that are conversation starters at the dog park but also feel tailor-made for your special furry friend.
Dog Name Trends
In the world of dog naming, there have been several interesting trends that pet parents have perpetuated over the last few years. Since 2020, several notable dog naming trends have been inspired by pop culture and baking culture. Many pet parents decided to name their new best friend after their favorite actor or musician.
And don’t forget all the various pet names inspired by musicians, such as Taylor Swift, Lizzo, and Lady Gaga. Between these names and ones inspired by the musical Hamilton, many pets started off life with their new families on a musical note in the last few years.
Another key trend has been naming pets after comfort food and drinks. Baked goods like Croissant, Brownie, and Cookie saw a rise in being used as pet monikers. But of course, along with it came rises in coffee, alcohol, and even marijuana-related names for dogs as many states moved to make cannabis legal.
Interestingly enough, many people have chosen coronavirus-related names for their new furry friends. Covi, Rona, Corona, and even Dr. Fauci are names now represented among the furry friends in America’s households.
Dog Naming Tips
We’ve been through quite a few of them today, and hopefully, one of the names on our list catches your eye and settles in as the perfect name for your new friend. However, sometimes following trends or picking a name off a list isn’t enough. After all, you’re planning on having your pup with you for many long, happy years to come, and whatever name you pick needs to be the perfect fit.
If you’re adding a new puppy to your family, then you have a clean slate to start with. Considering their personality, coloring, size, and any of the other factors we’ve mentioned can help you come up with the perfect name for them. Still, the perfect name might not dawn on you right away. This can be confusing for a young dog, especially when it comes to training. So often, you might have to pick a name out ahead of time without fully knowing your dog’s personality.
When this happens, it’s best to decide on a theme and research it for names you like. If you enjoy a different culture or language, then research names for dogs in that language. If you enjoy a certain sport, investigate terminology that could be used as a name for a pup.
But if you’re adopting a dog from a rescue, it’s important to keep their previous name in mind if you know it. While you don’t necessarily have to continue calling them the same name, consider choosing a name that sounds similar in syllable length or in letters used to the name they had before. This helps your dog become more easily acclimated to their new name and aids with training and helping them settle in well to their new life without feeling too jarred. And if possible, when taking them home, use both their old and new names in conjunction together for a while until they become comfortable hearing their new name used with their old one.
Whether you’re adopting a puppy or taking an adult dog home from a rescue, bringing a new furry friend into your life is an exciting and busy time. It is wise to make sure you have everything prepared ahead of time: their crate, their food, their toys, and especially their name.
Names carry lots of meaning and can somewhat define who we are. For our dogs, we’ll be referring to them by their name multiple times a day for years to come, so we want to be sure it not only fits them well but that we can enjoy the sound of it as well.
Regardless of whether you draw inspiration from their personality, size, color, or some other factor, we know that you’ll find the perfect name for your new Shih Tzu that helps you start a wonderful, long life together.