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200+ Japanese Cat Names: Ideas for Your Exotic Cat (with Meanings)

Hallie Roddy

By Hallie Roddy

Cat in Japan with Buddhist

Even if your cat isn’t a Japanese breed, there are plenty of reasons why people are seeking out Japanese pet names. Japan loves their pets, and they often give them names that have some sort of meaning behind it. A name really embodies a person or an animal, and a cat quickly becomes a part of their identity. If you’ve been looking for a few meaningful names, then you’ve come to the right place. We’ve provided you with some of the most common, beautiful, and unique Japanese pet names being used today.

How to Name Your Cat

Naming a cat isn’t something that you’ll want to take lightly. In fact, we recommend waiting until you get to know your pet a little better before making anything official. Imagine bringing a cat home and having a name picked out for them. After a couple of weeks, you might soon realize that the name that you’ve been training them to respond to doesn’t at all match their temperament, and you might even want to change it. Don’t be afraid to try out a few options. We bet one is more likely to stick than the others.

Here are some other tips for naming your cat:

  • Choose a shorter name or a name that is easy to turn into a nickname.
  • Make sure it works for your pet as they continue to mature.
  • Only name them something you’d feel comfortable saying in public or in front of company.
  • Try out a few potential names before committing to “the one.”
a close up of a Cymric cat
Image Credit: Zanna Pesnina, Shutterstock

Popular Japanese Cat Names

People around the world love their pets, but Japanese people have been spreading their love for them for years. They have no problem sharing them with the world, and some of the most popular pet names have come out of it.

  • Mari
  • Shiba
  • Francis
  • Hachiko
  • Maru
  • Pochi
  • Keiko
  • Yoshima
Ragdoll sitting on carpet floor
Image Credit: Peredniankina, Shutterstock

Female Japanese Cat Names

Most people like to have their names sorted by gender. While there are plenty of names that work for both males and females, here are some of the most popular choices for female felines:

  • Yui
  • Yuriko
  • Tae
  • Maki
  • Nobuko
  • Meisa
  • Kaoru
  • Kyoko
  • Keiko
  • Ran
  • Kibou
  • Tomoe Gozen (Japan’s most famous female samurai)
  • Aya
  • Rinko
  • Yukie
  • Kinuoy
  • Setsuko
  • Yamaguchi
  • Satomi
  • Haru
  • Asuna
  • Kaha
  • Inoue
  • Machiko
  • Sachiko
  • Mei
  • Riho
  • Yaruka
  • Tao
  • Mirei
bengal cat in grass
Image Credit: Irina_kukuts, Pixabay

Male Japanese Cat Names

A lot of male Japanese cat names are inspired by historical or current famous figures. These could be pop culture icons, military heroes, athletes, or other types of leaders.

  • Takashi
  • Tanaka
  • Tenshin
  • Hirohito
  • Akihito
  • Yukio
  • Yuzuru
  • Hideki
  • Karoo
  • Shinsuki
  • Kotaro
  • Taro
  • Kusunoko Masashige
  • Mako
  • Hirokuki
  • Akira
  • Masi
  • Shinji
  • Ichiro
  • Keisuke
  • Masashi
  • Kento
  • Morihei
  • Lil Moco
  • Jushin Thunder
  • Jiro Ono
  • Jiroemon
  • Momofuku
  • Kota
  • Basho
shorthair cat sitting in the grass
Image Credit: Maleo, Shutterstock

Japanese Cat Names with Meanings

Not everyone wants to choose a pet name just because it sounds cool. While that is certainly a reason to pick one, we find that names with deeper meanings behind them often make the choice feel a little more special for both you and your cat. Some of them are funnier; others are deeper. The meaning doesn’t really matter at the end of the day as long as you love it and it makes you feel happy with your decision.

  • Amaterasu: goddess of the sun
  • Jizo: protector of children
  • Niji: rainbow
  • Chuusei: loyalty
  • Mamoiri tai: constant protector
  • Suehirogari: open like a fan
  • Hachi: lucky number “8”
  • Nana: lucky number “7”
  • Yuri: lily
  • Daisuke: helper
  • Yasu: peace
  • Toshi: wise
  • Kannon: goddess of mercy
  • Shisa: lion-dog guardian
  • Hisa: long-awaited
  • Ume: plum
  • Inari: rice goddess
  • Nio: protector
  • Omikuji: fortune
  • Ema: wish board
  • Toshio: hero
  • Susanoo: god of mischief
  • Uzume: goddess of mirth
  • Yori: trust
  • Akabeko: cow Buddha
  • Omamori: blessing
  • Sentaro: steel boy
  • Ringo: apple
  • Mikan: orange
  • Koro Koro: cute cute
  • Maron: chestnut
  • Shiori: guide
  • Sato: sweet
  • Takara: treasure
  • Kurumi: walnut
  • Momo: peach
  • Hana: flower
  • Mochi: sweet sticky rice
  • WanWan: dog
  • Ichigo: strawberry
  • Tenshi: angel
  • Anzu: apricot
  • Kirei: lovely
  • Airi: affection
  • Hoshi: star
  • Ami: friend
  • Kuma: bear
  • Kimi: noble
  • Aki: sparkle
  • Yume: dream
  • Okashi: sweets
  • Chibi: small cute
  • Kaida: little dragon
  • Maiko: dancing child
  • Nyoko: treasure
  • Sanyu: happiness
  • Shinju: pearl
  • Petto: pet
  • Nomi: flea
  • Abu: horsefly
  • Kawasaki: a very fast pet
  • Adzuki: red bean
  • Sunao no: obedient
  • Kaeru: frog
  • Kame: (urtle
  • Runa: luna
  • Sora: sky
  • Sakura: flowering cherry tree
  • Usagi: rabbit
  • Tanuki: raccoon dog
  • Pokemon: pocket monster
  • Choho: butterfly
  • Crea: create
  • Yuki: snow
  • Shiro: white; means blessings, sacred
  • Ame: rain
  • Ao: blue; means calmness, stability, femininity
  • Akemi: bright and beautiful
  • Mana: love
  • Hotaru: firefly
  • Rina: jasmine
  • Ocha: Japanese traditional tea
  • Mizu: water
  • Midori: green; means growth, energy, youth
  • Suzu: bell
  • Satoko: wise child
  • Suzume: sparrow
  • Tatsu: dragon
  • Shika: deer
  • Ayame: iris
  • Komainu: lion-dog guard
  • Rilakkuma: bear in a relaxed mood
  • Benten: goddess of good luck
  • Taka: peregrine
  • Tani: stand of glory
  • Fuji: after Mt. Fuji
  • Tora: tiger
  • Honou: flame
  • Yuuki: courage
  • Riki: strength
  • Byakko: Japanese white tiger
  • Hinode: sunrise
  • Kodama: spirit that lives in a tree
  • Yosei: fairy
  • Kuro: black; means powerful or foreboding
  • Akune: fiery red
  • Ryi: dragon
  • Yuki-Onna: snow woman
  • Hachiman: god of warriors
  • Aka: red; means power, heat, vitality
  • Katana: a type of sword
  • Kabuto: a type of armor
  • Sumi: black ink
  • Kokoro: heart
  • Kaigen: dagger
  • Naginata: spear
  • Uesugi Kenshin: son of powerful warlord
  • Miyamoto Musashi: famous duelist, swordsmith, and school founder
  • Bushi: warrior
  • Sanada Yukimura: one of the greatest warriors
  • Yasuke: African slave turned Japanese samurai
  • Oda Nobunaga: deeply respected samurai
Lilac point siamese cat
Image Credit: Ivonne Wierink, Shutterstock


There are hundreds of Japanese names for you to give to your cat. At the end of the day, all that really matters is that you are happy with your choice and think that it suits your cat well. Hopefully, your cat will enjoy the sound of it as well.

Featured Image Credit: SAND555UG, Shutterstock

Hallie Roddy

Authored by

Hallie has been a proud nature and animal enthusiast for as long as she can remember. She attributes her passion for the environment and all its creatures to her childhood when she was showing horses on weekends and spending her weeknights devoting her attention to her pets. She enjoys spending most of her time in Michigan playing with her two rescue cats, Chewbacca and Lena, and her dog, Clayton. When Hallie isn’t usin...Read more

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