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What’s in a (Dog’s) Name?

G&G readers share the stories and inspiration behind their pets’ monikers

Harley Quinn.

In a recent Talk of the South newsletter, we asked readers, “How did your dog gets its name?” Here are a few of the many responses:

She is named Frida, after Frida Kahlo. She is part chihuahua. She’s missing a leg and she hangs out with an artistic fat man all day. It just seemed right. —Benjamin W. 

Frida Kahlo.

His name is Jack Sparrow and he got it because he is a pirate. He was abandoned with litter mates on top of Paris Mountain in Greenville , South Carolina, and wound up on our patio—hungry. And any chance he got he’d steal food from Oscar, our goldendoodle…which is why Oscar is slim and trim and Jack is currently on a vet-imposed slimming program. —Al F.

My mini dachshund Woodford is named for one of my favorite distilleries. He’s also a fan. —Alex T.

Meet Shoals Bourbon Babe, my sweet Boykin Spaniel. She is from Muscle Shoals, Alabama. I’m a lover of bourbon and she has that wonderful warm coloring with hints of caramel, and she’s clearly a babe!!  —Alice M.

Shoals Bourbon Babe.

Our dachshund Taz got his name because every time before he would poop, he would spin around in circles just like the Tasmanian Devil in the cartoons. —Jim B.

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After Hank Williams…he was going to be called Waylon but Hank won out. —Lisa R.

Ole Miss Scout is a double ode to Oxford, where she was born, and Jean Louise Finch, the most loveable tomboy of the ages. —Kathleen Q.

Our sweet Gus is named in honor of Augustus “Gus” McCrae from Lonesome Dove. We rescued him as a puppy, and he is a big spoiled baby who has a passion for bacon and air conditioning! —Lisa H.


Our dog Winnie was named at the humane society shelter, and it is the perfect name. She is as sweet as Winnie the Pooh…and just as hungry! —Diane D.

Harley Quinn.

We just picked up our puppy a few weeks ago. Being from the South, I prefer a good double name for a girl. We wanted to see the puppy before naming her, figuring the name would come to us once we met her. When we drove off the farm, the first thing we saw was a group of bikers on their Harleys…Her name is Harley Quinn, and she can very much be a little villain. —Cara D.

Ren. Just Ren. It was suggested that he might have been named after Renoir. Nah, just Ren was the answer. However, when “Renoir Edwards” is in trouble, he knows he’d better come quick. —Lulu E. 


My dad is named Jim and my father in law also was named Jim. Our family loves Jimmy Buffett as well. Here’s OUR Jimmy enjoying the beach on Hilton Head, Summer 2022. —Jaqueline M.

She is an adorable beagle/Jack Russell rescue from Georgia who has black-rimmed eyelids. Hence, her name is Elizabeth Taylorbut we call her Betsy. —Marty C.


We have two rescue dogs, an English springer spaniel named Annie because she was an orphan [and] a Brittany spaniel who came from Alabama, and his name is Banjo. —Kimbrough J.

We were living in the Northeast at the time and traveled to Oxford, Mississippi, to pick up our fox red Lab puppy from Wildrose Kennels. We named our Southern belle Julep in honor of her Southern heritage, sweetness, and copper coloring. —Ron E.

Gatsby was just a tiny puppy my son rescued from a country roadside ditch one evening, pretty much out in the middle of nowhere with no indication of where he’d come from. A humble beginning. When my son joined the Marines a year later, Gatsby became my dog. He’s lived in luxury and traveled the world (Texas and New Mexico, at least). He went from a ditch to a rich life, so his name isn’t that off-brand even though he’s just a medium-sized cute mutt. We love him dearly! —Sarah A.

My dog’s name is Mr. Brown…because he’s brown. —Kimberly C.

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