The Luv Doc: Naming Conventions
A name with three syllables that ends with a breakup
Dear Luv Doc,
My boyfriend wants to name our new puppy after his ex "because she's a bitch." I agree, but I don't want to have to call her name all the time. Plus, Cassandra is a terrible puppy name. I would prefer that he just forget about her and move on. Is he being a little too obsessive, or am I just being a Cassandra?
– Not a Cassandra
Three-syllable dog names can be adorable but are pretty much useless from a training standpoint. If you want to spend a lot of time standing on your porch spraying spittle yelling "Cassandra" in a frustrated rage while your dog completely ignores you so she can bark ferociously at a terrified toddler, by all means, see that hilarious joke to its tragic conclusion. Otherwise, you should stick with something simple like Lucy, or Molly, or my personal favorite, Roxanne – just so she knows she doesn't have to put on the red light. Ideally, you want a name with two syllables that ends with a vowel and not a name with three syllables that ends with a breakup.
Really though, there's no need to get all hung up on gender-specific names. It's a fucking dog. You could name it Sparkplug, or Whiskey, or Ping Pong ... or even Blanket without fear it will be mercilessly teased by other dogs. I have no idea what dogs tease each other about, but I am pretty sure it isn't their names. My guess is they bust each other's chops about really cruel shit like physical deformities, lineage, and anus scent – or maybe they just leave that snarky shit to cats. As far as what comes out of human mouths, I bet it sounds something like Charlie Brown's teacher, and nobody listens to Charlie Brown's teacher unless she has a butt bag full of puppy treats.
While I will agree that naming a puppy is an important and time-sensitive matter, you might benefit equally from a reexamination of your relationship with your boyfriend. The fact that he would feel bold enough to even suggest naming your puppy after his ex belies a rather troubling undercurrent. I'm not just referring to his obvious ignorance of dog training standards. Not everybody is hip to that whole two-syllable-second-syllable-is-a-vowel thing. At the very least you would hope he would focus less on the past and more on the present. The fact that he is still nourishing bitterness and hate toward his ex means he isn't fully focused on you. My guess is that you deserve at least that ... and a new puppy!