UNIQUE IRISH DOG NAMES FOR 2021 -- FOR YOUR ONE OF A KIND PET

Although I’m half Irish  most of the year, when St. Patrick’s Day  rolls around,  I'm 100% erin go bragh.  I've been known to pour myself a beagán Jamesons, prop my feet up and watch John Wayne pretend to be an Irish boxer in The Quiet Man with my wee Scottish terrier mix by my side

And I get to thinking –  why didn’t I choose an Irish name for my dog?   Which then leads me to wonder about what great Irish name I might have chosen (had I turned my mind to it at the time).


Well, it turns out there are plenty of unique Irish names for dogs -- Irish names for female dogs, Irish names for male dogs, names inspired by popular places in Ireland, names inspired by the Irish rich and/or famous, and the ever popular -- alcohol inspired Irish names for dogs.

But not every name is right for every dog.



Tips for Naming Your Dog

Naming your dog can be a daunting task, so start by considering things like your pup's physical characteristics, personality, and coat. You also might want to consider how easy the name is to pronounce (important, since you want to be sure that he or she will be able to learn and respond to their name).  Gaelic is a tricky tongue and some names are tough to spell -- consider how many times you want to repeat the spelling to your friends, family, and most importantly, your vet and groomer.

So without further ado, here's our list of unique and one of a kind Irish names that you won’t be hearing over and over at the dog park.

Irish names for female dogs 

Ailbhe

In Irish legend, this was the name of a female warrior. It’s pronounced AL-va, and is perfect for a feisty girl pup.


Aoibheann

This name looks like a mouthful, but is pronounced AY-veen. It means “of pleasant, beautiful sheen” or “radiant beauty.”

Aoife

Remember what I said about spelling?  This one’s pronounced  EE-vah and means beautiful radiant

Ardeen

This name means “little height,” a great name if your new pup happens to be a miniature anything

Barra

This unusual name means “fair-haired,” great for the unique blondie in your life

Blathnaid

In Irish, “blath” means flower or blossom. That makes Blathnaid, pronounced BLAW-nid, a fit for your best “bud” (ha ha, a pet pun!)

Cadhla

Pronounced KY-lah, it means “beautiful, comely, and graceful.” If your new dog has an elegant air about her, this is a winner

Cara

Means "Unnamed companion" and might be perfect for that adorable rescue

Cliodhna

Pronounced CLEE-oh-na, this name comes from the word “clodhna,” and it means “shapely.” In some Irish myths, Cliodhna is the goddess of love and beauty

Eabha

This name, pronounced AY-va, is the Irish form of Eve, meaning “life.” Because hey, life isn’t complete without a dog

Eimer

Pronounced EE-mer), meaning swift, a great name for any sighthound

Kiana

This Irish name means “ancient,” fitting for a girl pup with an old soul

K
ira

Meaning throne, this name fits any dog who like to be treated like royalty

Oona

Quirky and unique, Oona is pronounced exactly how you’d expect, and it means “one”

Sorcha

If your new girl pup shines bright like a diamond, this name fits the bill! It means “bright” or “shining” and it’s pronounced SOR-ca


Irish names for male dogs 

 Ailbe or Alby

This name means “white,” perfect for a pup with white fur

Alroy

The name means “red,” and who doesn’t love a ginger?

Brady
Meaning noble or illustrious, perfect for a Great Dane

Cathal

Pronounced KA-hal, Cathal means "powerful in battle" and is a superb name for a tough little warrior pup

Caoimhín

This name, pronounced Kwee-veen, means “handsome birth” in Gaelic, and is way more interesting than its more common version, Kevin

C
onor

The name Conor—sometimes spelled with two n’s—translates to “lover of hounds” in Gaelic. If your new pup is a social butterfly and loves other dogs, this name is a great pick

Conall

Translates to “Powerful Wolf.” This also makes a great name for an Irish Wolfhound

Cormac

Cormac translates to “charioteer” in Gaelic, making it a great name for a pup who loves  to run

Dagda

A character from Irish folklore, said to have power over life, death, weather, and agriculture. He is said to resemble a large man with a black hood.  Hhhhmmmm, maybe for a doberman?

Darragh

Pronounced DA-rah, this is a traditional Irish name that means “oak tree” in Gaelic.

Duff

Meaning swarthy, this is a good fit for ant dark-haired pup

Delaney

The Gaelic meaning of Delaney is thought to be "offspring of the challenger,” perfect for any pup with a feisty personality

Egan

Egan means “little fiery one,” which makes this a great name for a dog who acts like he’s part dragon

Fergus

Meaning “powerful and manly,” this is essentially a flexed bicep kind of name, perfect for a boxer or other powerful breed

Finbar

The name “Finbar” means “white hair.” It’s also super fun to say. Go ahead, try it -- Finbar, finbar, FINBAR!!!!!!!!!!

Finian

Finian is such a cute Irish name for a little boy pup

Finn

The “nickname” for Finian, it has more of that hipster vibe and means white, fair

Flannery

Meaning ready or valor, doesn’t this name sound perfect for an Irish Setter?

Girvin

This Irish name means “small rough one,” which would be fitting for a Chihuahua with a attitude

Lachlan

This name means “lake-land” in Gaelic, making it a good pick for a dog who’s as happy in water as he is on dry land

Lorcan
Lorcan means “little fierce one.” Yes, I’m talking to you!

Lunn

This name means “strong” and “warlike.” You don’t mess with a Lunn

Kieran

Meaning little dark one, this could refer to coat color or personality

Mellan

This name means “little lightning.” So yeah, a pup named Mellan is basically the dog version of Thor

Padraig

Pronounced Paw-rik, means nobly born

Puca

A creature of Irish folklore, believed to bring both good and bad luck. Awwwwwww. . .

 

Irish dog names inspired by locations 

    Blarney
    This town is home to the Blarney Castle and the famous Blarney Stone.  A dog with attitude would wear this name well

    Burren

    A region of County Clare with a karst landscape featuring bedrock with a vast cracked pavement of glacial-era limestone, cliffs, caves, and fossils

    Cashel
    From the Rock of Cashel, a set of rocky ruins that were once referred to as Fairy Hill by the pagans. It’s said that this was where St. Patrick was baptized as the Third King of Munster

    Ennis
    Meaning “island,” a town in County Clare about 20 miles from Shannon Airport and located on the river Fergus. Also evokes memories of a certain brooding doctor from the Poldark series

    Kerry
    County Kerry is a region of Ireland in the west. Kerry takes its name from a word meaning “people of Ciar.” These individuals were thought to be the original “dark Irish”

    Wexford
    Located in the southeast corner of Ireland near Curracloe Beach, the location for the opening scenes of Saving Private Ryan, this name has quite a classy ring to it

         

        Channeling the Rich and/or Famous for Irish Names

        Beckett

        Novelist and playwright Samuel Beckett was born in Dublin, Ireland. He was the author of the play
        Waiting for Godot and was awarded the Nobel  Prize for Literature in 1969

        Bono
        Born in Dublin, Ireland, the frontman of U2 was awarded Time Magazine's Person of the Year in 2005 for his humanitarian efforts 

        Bram
        As in Stoker.  As in the author of Dracula. I’d think twice before choosing this one . . .

          Cagney
          James Cagney was an American actor, singer, and dancer. If you have to ask . . .

          Geldof
          Irish born singer, songwriter and activist, Bob Geldof was the frontman of the Boomtown Rats and an organizer of Live Aid Concerts.   He also produced the single, Do They Know It's Christmas? which raised $8 million for African famine victims

          Shaw
          Famous Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw, born in Dublin, Ireland, earned the Nobel Peace Prize for Literature. Creator of Pygmalion (famously re-done as My Fair Lady starring the inimitable Audrey Hepburn) 

          Stoker
          See Bram,  above

          Swift
          Also born in Dublin, author Jonathan Swift penned Gulliver's Travels in 1726.


          Irish dog names inspired by alcohol

          Bailey

          The popular Irish cream liquor; for a dog who's a smooth operator

          Beamish

          In 1792 Richard Beamish & Richard Crawford, two Cork merchants, established the famous Beamish & Crawford brewery, in the heart of Cork. Beamish stout is still being enjoyed today as a popular alternative to Guiness

          Bulmers

          Ireland’s most famous cider.  Drop the S and I see this for any type of bulldog

          Bushmills

          A world-class whiskey from the north coast of Ireland. Personally, I’d drop the S and go with Bushmill

          Dingle Gin

          A quality gin from Kerry.  Dingle would be a good fit for a dog who’s a bit of a goofball

          Guinness

          The famous dark stout – one of the best-selling and most well-known alcoholic drinks in Ireland.  This one sounds like it would suit a sturdy fella who’s a bit ragged around the edges

          Jamesons

          Ireland’s most famous whiskey.  Drop the S and you’ve got a dignified name for a proper pup

          Shandy

          A popular Irish drink that involves mixing beer with a sweet soda. Got a disreputable-looking dog  of dubious parentage?  Shandy could be just the ticket


          Popular and trending Irish dog names

          There’s been a significant rise in the popularity of some Irish names, so consider whether you want a name that's unique or whether you're more comfortable following the pack.   Consider these to be officially trending:

          • Finn (and Finnegan)
          • Liam
          • Keely
          • Rory
          • Saoirse (pronounced SOR-cha or SEER-sha)


          And there you have it -- our admittedly incomplete and completely biased list of the coolest Irish names for your one of a kind pup.

          Did any of them fit your dog to a tee?  Let us know in the comments below!