Hepper is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

100+ Historical Dog Names: Popular Male & Female Choices

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove

Historical Dog Names

Dogs have been domesticated for thousands of years, serving as loyal companions, guardians, and hunters. And, we’ve had more than enough time to come up with the cutest, most adorable, and most ridiculous names for our four-legged buds! However, while Max, Fido, Luna, and Rex are great picks, if you want to make your doggo stand out, these monikers won’t cut it.

So, why not go with historical names—famed warriors, kings, scientists, and artists from the past? Just imagine how cool a doggo named Nero or Frida can be! To help you navigate our extensive list of names, we broke it down into different categories, including the best names for boy and girl dogs. Check them out!

Divider-Dog Paw and Bone- New

Getting Inspired By Kings, Emperors, and Famous Politicians

A big, strong doggo raised by a loving and caring family will grow into a faithful and fearless guardian. That’s why naming a rough-tough Shepherd, Cane Corso or Rottweiler after a famed leader or king is so popular these days. It can be a full name, a shorter form, or a “doggified” version, like Napawleon. Take a look:

  • Attila (ruler of Huns, 406–453)
  • Benjamin (Franklin, US politician, 1706–1790)
  • Caesar/Julius (Roman emperor, 100–44 BC)
  • Delano (Roosevelt, the 32nd POTUS, 1882–1945)
  • Domi (Domitian, Roman emperor, 51–96 AD)
  • Furchill (Winston Churchill, UK Prime Minister, 1874–1965)
  • Genghis (Khan, Mongolian emperor, 1162–1227)
  • Hoover (33rd US President, 1874–1964)
  • Link (Abraham Lincoln, 16th US President, 1809–1865)
  • Luther (Martin Luther King, activist, leader, 1929–1968)
  • Marx (Karl Marx, German economist, 1818–1883)
  • Napawleon (Bonaparte, French emperor, 1769–1821)
  • Nero (Roman emperor, 37–68 AD)
  • Nerva (Roman emperor, 30–98 AD)
  • Grover (Cleveland, 22nd and 24th POTUS, 1837–1908)
  • Theo (Theodor Roosevelt, 26th US President, 1858–1919)
  • Washingbone (George Washington, the first POTUS, 1732–1799)
  • Xerxes (Persian ruler, 519–465 BC)
  • Yuma (Native American tribe, city in Arizona)
Side shot of a black Flat Coated Retriever dog running across a meadow
Photo Credit: Sven Mewis, Shutterstock

Scientists, Pioneers, and Philosophers

Bloodhounds and German Shepherds have an incredible sense of smell. They can track a scent from miles away and are often recruited to help locate bombs and drugs. Akitas, Bullmastiffs, and Boxers, in turn, are natural-born watchdogs. More importantly, all these buds are incredibly smart and resourceful. So, why not name your doggo Tesla, Plato, or Edison? Here are our top picks:

  • Albone (Albert Einstein, scientist, 1879–1955)
  • Cicero (Roman philosopher and statesman, 106–43 BC)
  • DaVinci (Leonardo DaVinci, Italian scientist and theorist, 1452–1519)
  • Darwin (Charles Darwin, English naturalist, 1809–1882)
  • Edison (Thomas Edison, American inventor, 1847–1931)
  • Enzo (Ferrari, Italian entrepreneur, 1898–1988)
  • Ericsbone (Leif Ericson, Viking explorer, 970–1018/1025)
  • Fibo (Fibonacci, Italian mathematician, 1170–1250)
  • Goras (Pythagoras, Greek philosopher, 570–490 BC)
  • Jacq (Jacques Cousteau, French naval officer, 1910–1997)
  • Newton (Isaac Newton, English physicist, 1643–1727)
  • Pascal (French mathematician, 1623–1662)
  • Plato (Greek philosopher, innovator, 428–348 BC)
  • Seneca (Roman philosopher, satirist, 4BC–65 AD)
  • Sigmund (Freud, Austrian neurologist, 1856–1939)
  • Sock-rates (Greek philosopher, 470–399 BC)
  • Tesla (American inventor, electrical engineer, 1856–1943)
smiling woman with her cute jack russell terrier dog
Image Credit: New Africa, Shutterstock

Musicians, Poets, and Sculptors

Dogs are not particularly good at playing musical instruments (although they can be taught to paint), but that doesn’t mean they can’t appreciate art. The following list includes the names of the most influential artists/creators in history, including Dickens, Chopin, and more. If your four-legged family member has an artistic streak, these picks will be perfect for it:

  • Bach (Sebastian Bach, German composer, 1685–1750)
  • Beethoven (German musician/composer, 1770–1827)
  • Byron (Lord Byron, English poet, 1788–1824)
  • Casi (Giacomo Casanova, Italian adventurer/writer, 1725–1798)
  • Chopin (French/Polish composer, 1810–1849)
  • Dante (Italian Renaissance poet, 1265–1321)
  • Dickens (English writer and critic, 1812–1870)
  • Dono (Donatello, Italian sculptor, 1386–1466)
  • Homer (Greek poet, 8th century BC)
  • Houdini (famous magician, 1874–1926)
  • Michelangelo (Italian sculptor/painter, 1475–1564)
  • Mozart (influential Austrian composer, 1756–1791)
  • Quintus (Horatius Flaccus, a Roman poet, 65–27 BC)
  • Rafael (Italian painter/architect, 1483–1520)
  • Salvador Doggi (Salvador Dali, Spanish surrealist, 1904–1989)
  • Shaky (William Shakespeare, English playwright/poet, 1564–1616)
  • Woofgang (Wolfgang Mozart, Austrian composer, 1756–1791)
Entlebucher Mountain Dog
Image Credit: Vivienstock,Shutterstock

The Best Historical Names for a Male Dog

Planning on adopting a boy? We have just the right names! If it’s a 200-pound, 30-inch beast, you can name it Titan, Goliath, or Viking. These are just some of the historical names we chose for a male dog:

  • Abel (the first-born son of Adam and Eve)
  • Ajax (Greek mythological hero)
  • Ares (Greek God of war)
  • Barka (Hannibal Barca, Carthaginian general, 247–183 BC)
  • Barry (famed rescue dog from Switzerland)
  • Buddy (the first guide dog in the United States)
  • Capone (American gangster, 1899–1947)
  • Chaplin (American comic actor, 1889–1977)
  • Chips (decorated dog, served in WWII)
  • Crockett (US folk hero, politician, 1786–1836)
  • Goliath (giant warrior, 10th century BC)
  • Hercules (divine hero, son of Jupiter)
  • Midas (Greek king with the “golden touch”)
  • Neil (Armstrong, the first man on the Moon, 1930–2012)
  • Nelson (the first dog to cross the States in a car)
  • Nimo (Geronimo, Apache tribe leader, 1829–1909)
  • Patton (United States general, 1885–1945)
  • Smoky (first-ever therapy dog, served during WWII)
  • Soter (Greek guard dog from Corinth)
  • Sultan (ruler in a Muslim country)
  • Sirius (Dog star, brightest one in Earth’s sky)
  • Titans (Greek mythology Gods)
  • Thor (Norse mythology God)
  • Ulysses (Greek king from Homer’s Odyssey)
  • Viking (Scandinavian warrior)
  • Zeus (the Greek God of thunder)
young man with his boxer dog in the park
Image Credit: Juan_Hernandez, Shutterstock

The Best Historical Names for a Female Dog

Civil rights movement leaders, fearless warriors, and iconic rulers, women of the past have made a considerable impact. And you can name your canine princess Cleopatra, Frida, Isabella, or Rosa—take your pick:

  • Amelia (Earhart, American aviator, 1897–1937)
  • Alex (Alexandra Feodorovna, Russian Empress, 1872–1918)
  • Aphra (Behn, English playwright and poet, 1640–1689)
  • Arabella (King James VI’s cousin, 1575–1615)
  • Athena (Greek Goddess of wisdom)
  • Clarissa (Barton, American Red Cross founder, 1821–1912)
  • Cleopawtra (Cleopatra, Egyptian Pharaoh, 69–30 BC)
  • Delilah (Samson’s love interest, Bible character)
  • Ella (Fitzgerald, American singer, 1917–1996)
  • Florence (Nightingale, English founder of modern nursing, 1820–1910)
  • Frida (Kahlo, Mexican painter, 1907–1954)
  • Guine (Guinevere, Queen of Great Britain)
  • Harriet (Tubman, American social activist, 1822–1913)
  • Hera (Greek Goddess of marriage)
  • Howlen (Helen of Troy, Greek mythology)
  • Isabella (Queen of Castile, 1451–1504)
  • Imelda (Lambertini, Italian Catholic mystic, 1322–1333)
  • Inca (ancient South American empire, 13–15 century)
  • Ishtar (Goddess of love and fertility)
  • Joan of Bark (Joan of Arc, patron saint of France, 1412–1431)
  • Laika (Soviet astronaut, first doggo in space)
  • Lara (James Buchanan’s dog, a Newfoundland)
  • Lizzy (Elizabeth, Queen of England, 1533–1603)
  • Margaret (Thatcher, British Prime Minister, 1925–2013)
  • Pawsten (Jane Austen, English novelist, 1775–1817)
  • Rosa Barks (Rosa Parks, American activist, 1913–2005)
  • Shannon (JFK’s English cocker spaniel)
  • Shiba (character from the Bible)
  • Venus (Milky Way planet, Roman Goddess)
Cesky Fousek dog lying on grass
Image Credit: Vaclav Sonnek, Shutterstock

Divider-Dog Paw and Bone- New

Names You Might Want to Avoid

There are quite a few historical names out there that are controversial at best. For example, Brutus betrayed and killed Caesar. Colston, in turn, traded 84,000 enslaved Africans. And then we have Leopold II (Belgian monarch, known for violent colonial regimes) and Columbus (blamed for the genocide of Indigenous tribes).

Lastly, avoid political figures, artists, and celebrities accused of abuse or harassment. Even if their names were eventually cleared, the public opinion might’ve not changed.

The Science Behind Naming a Dog: Breaking It Down

  • Start with the pup’s personality. Is your pup affectionate, cheerful, and curious? Pick a cute name for it that reflects the pet’s character. The same goes for friendly, open-hearted dogs. On the other hand, an imposing guardian who puts fear into the hearts of intruders will do better with something a bit more masculine.
  • Get inspired by its appearance. No matter how sweet-tempered the dog is, if it’s a canine giant, a name like “Pups” or “Bae” won’t fit. The coat color also plays a big role here: Shady, Spot, and Brownie are all great choices for a fluffy champ. Or draw inspiration from the pet’s ancestry, naming a Shepherd “Wolf” or a Bulldog “Arthur”.
  • Go for short, catchy monikers. Unique names are great and all, but you shouldn’t pick a jawbreaker like “Bartholomew Demetrius“, or “Her Highness Cutie“. Instead, focus on short, one- or two-syllable names that the doggo can memorize. Also, see that it ends on a vowel and doesn’t sound like a command (“Sit”, “Drop It”, or “Wait”).
  • Only pick a long-lasting name. Naming a puppy “Sweet Pie” might seem like a good idea at first, but that will change once it becomes an adult. Even if it’s a toy breed (a Maltese or Havanese), a childish name like that won’t suit it in any way. With that, avoid any names that are “hot” right now yet might not necessarily fit your pet.
  • Get the whole family involved. Even if you have a special bond with the fur baby and spend more time with it, don’t forget to ask your family’s opinion. After all, this isn’t a one-man job but a decision that should be made as a team. Do set some ground rules, though (like maybe no double names, fictional characters, or villains).
great pyrenees dog with owner
Image Credit: Cody Hanson Photography, Shutterstock

Divider-Dog Paw and Bone- NewConclusion

For a dog, a name is more than just a bunch of letters. It’s a part of the pup’s identity, and if the name fits the fur baby’s temperament, it will be a match made in Heavens! Today, we talked about the best dog monikers inspired by historical figures—emperors, painters, and poets. Now, some of these picks can be tongue twisters.

Still, most names on the list are easy to remember and pronounce and fit a wide range of dogs. Besides, you can always go for Bella instead of Isabella or Benji instead of Benjamin. Overall, we covered over 100 names, so you’ll find the perfect name for your doggo!

See Also:


Featured Image Credit: Madeeva_11, Shutterstock

Related Articles

Further Reading

Vet Articles

Latest Vet Answers

The latest veterinarians' answers to questions from our database