20 Dog Names That Millennials Love More Than Avocado Toast

If you were born between 1980 and 1995, chances are pretty good your name is Michael or Jessica. You’re also more likely than your parents are to own a pet (mmk, boomer?). Today, according to the American Pet Products Association’s National Pet Owners Survey, 70 percent of U.S. households own a pet and 32 percent of all those pet owners are millennials. In fact, three out of every four millennials are self-proclaimed pet owners! Back in 1988, only 56 percent of U.S. families had animals living at home. It seems like a bunch of millennials finally went out and bought that puppy they always wanted—and we can almost guarantee they named it Luna.

Dog name popularity

Many current popular dog names (like Charlie and Molly) used to be pretty popular people names. Which makes sense! Not only are millennials waiting longer to have kids (or declining that responsibility entirely), YPulse says 42 percent of them think of their pets as children. Ergo, lots of human names are being tossed at our animal family members.

Embrace Pet Insurance says Luna is the number-one most popular dog name among their clients aged 25 to 40. We cross-checked this with BarkBox’s list of most popular dog names published by Travel + Leisure and MadPaws, an Australian-based pet-sitting company, to find out more. The results are lots of cute, short names inspired by popular books and movies millennials grew up with. Can you spot nods to Harry Potter, Twilight, All Dogs Go to Heaven, AirBud and Milo & Otis? We’re surprised Chance and Sassy (from Homeward Bound) didn’t make the list. Maybe next year.

So, if you’re between 25 and 40 and just brought home a Boston Terrier to befriend your partner’s Corgi, we’ve got some winning name suggestions for you!

millennial dog names luna
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1. Luna

Anyone who read Harry Potter knows the quirky Luna Lovegood. Or maybe you’re obsessed with your lunar cycles these days.

2. Bella

Oh, you preferred Twilight to Harry Potter? Maybe get two pups and name the other one Edward.

3. Charlie

Naming your dog after Charlie B. Barkin, the German Shepherd voiced by Burt Reynolds in All Dogs Go to Heaven, is pure gold.

4. Lucy

Lucy from the Peanuts gives good life advice, as do dogs.

5. Bailey

An Old English name that was actually popular in the late 1880s, Bailey is a super sweet androgynous choice (potentially made popular again by the 2017 film A Dog’s Purpose).

millennial dog names max
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6. Max

The real hero of How the Grinch Stole Christmas is Max. Give this name to an honorable pup.

7. Daisy

For a spoiled, cute pup who looks as good in pearls as Carey Mulligan in The Great Gatsby.

8. Cooper

This is a unique name that has gained much more popularity in the past 20 years or so. Ideal for anyone obsessed with bad boy ballerina Cooper Nielson from Center Stage. (Not a millennial? Then you just don’t get it.)

9. Lola

Run, Lola, Run,” will be cool to yell at the dog park because other millennials will wink at you knowingly.

10. Penny

The perfect name for Lost fans and anyone who feels lucky to have found their new family member!

11. Milo

Millennials on land and sea fawned over nerdy hero Milo Thatch in 2001’s Atlantis: The Lost Empire.

millennial dog names rocky
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12. Rocky

If you have a boxer and you don’t name him Rocky, what are you even doing?

13. Stella

If you’re a fan of theater and you don’t name your dog Stella so you can passionately yell her name when it’s time to come inside, what are you even doing?

14. Duke

This name simultaneously evokes prestige (a la Downton Abbey) and an all-American sense of adventure (a la John Wayne).

15. Molly

Forget Leo! The Unsinkable Molly Brown was every millennial’s favorite character in Titanic. Right?

16. Bear

If your dog looks like a bear, your work is done.

17. Sadie

Sadie is actually a nickname for Sarah! Name your dog after one of the eight Sarahs in every class you had growing up.

millennial dog names buddy
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18. Buddy

You legit cannot call yourself a millennial if you haven’t seen at least one Air Bud movie.

19. Tucker

Raise your hand if you fell head over millennial heels for Jonathan Jackson in Tuck Everlasting. Your dog may not live forever, but this name is pretty timeless.

20. Harley

Whether inspired by Harley Quinn or Harley Davidson, this name is meant for a dog with attitude.

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Freelance Writer

Sarah Ashley is a Chicago-based freelance journalist. She has covered pets for PureWow for six years and tackles everything from dog training tips to the best litter boxes. Her...