VPI Unveils the Top Pet Names of 2012

For the second straight year, Twilight-inspired “Bella” was the most popular dog and cat moniker in the VPI database in 2012. The name also made the top 10 birds and exotic pet’s names list for the first time, coming in as the third most popular.

We determined the most popular pet monikers after sorting through our database of more than 485,000 insured pets. Following are the top 10 most common names for dogs and cats, as well as birds and exotic pets: 

Dogs Cats Birds and Exotics
1. Bella 1. Bella 1. Charlie
2. Bailey 2. Max 2. Buddy
3. Max 3. Chloe 3. Bella
4. Lucy 4. Oliver 4. Max
5. Molly 5. Lucy 5. Angel
6. Buddy 6. Smokey 6. Baby
7. Daisy 7. Shadow 7. Coco
8. Maggie 8. Tiger 8. Rocky
9. Charlie 9. Charlie 9. Bandit
10. Sophie 10. Tigger 10. Sunny

As the list above shows, pet owners continue to prefer human names for their furry friends. Each of the top five dog and cat names were also among’s 100 most popular baby names of 2012. Meanwhile, traditional dog names continue to trend downward. Of the nearly half a million pets insured by VPI, only 11 dogs barked to “Fido,” and just 65 cats purred to “Fluffy.”

For the third straight year, “Charlie” topped the list of bird and exotic pet names. VPI is the only pet insurance company that offers an avian and exotic plan, offering coverage to feathered friends, lizards, gerbils, rabbits and other companion animals. Although the top 10 canine and feline monikers went virtually unchanged in 2012, in addition to “Bella,” “Rocky” and “Bandit” cracked the birds and exotics top 10 list for the first time.

Although “Bella” and “Max” continued their reign as the most popular pet names for the fourth consecutive year, thousands of other pets are donning monikers of a less conventional form, such as “Chew Barka” and “Pico de Gato.” To view some of the more creative monikers selected for VPI’s Top 10 Most Unusual Pet Names of 2012, visit

Are you a pet lover that prefers conventional or quirky names for your furry, four-legged friends? Leave us a comment below and let us know what you named your cuddly companion!


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