Happy feast of St. Maximilian Kolbe!! He will always be one of my very favorites, and I know so many of you feel the same way.
I’ve been charmed recently by the names I’ve heard on two new dogs: a friend of mine and her family recently got a dog they named Ignacio, because they loved the idea of calling it Nacho but wanted a faith connection (Nacho is a diminutive of Ignacio!), and Simcha Fisher and her family recently got a dog they named Santino, called Sonny (of course there’s The Godfather reference, but I also just love Santino [“little saint”], and Sonny is such a great nickname).
We don’t have any pets, but I’ve often thought that if we were to ever find ourselves the owners of a German shepherd, how could we not name it Benedict?? (Because Pope Emeritus Benedict is German! And the former shepherd of a worldwide flock!) And wouldn’t Ratzinger be great for a cat? (Gotta zing them rats!) Maybe Patrick as an ironic name for a pet snake? (Because of how St. Patrick drove the snakes out of Ireland.) Then there’s the whole Dominican “hounds of heaven” line of thinking — St. Dominic’s mother had a dream “that a dog jumped from her womb holding a torch and set everything around them on fire,” and then St. Dominic was conceived. I love that the Dominicans have been known as the “hounds of heaven,” and how cool is it that Domini canes means “dogs/hounds of the Lord” in Latin, which sounds just like the Latin for the Dominican Order, Dominicanus?! Obviously, it’s completely necessary to get two dogs: a German shepherd named Benedict, and another dog named Dominic. Makes perfect sense to me!
I asked about pet names several years ago, in the wake of the death of my brother’s dog, and one of you commented that Gertrude would be great for a cat, since she (St. Gertrude of Nivelles) is the patron of cats. I’d never heard that before, but indeed it’s true!
What names-with-faith-connections have you used for or heard on pets that you think are particularly clever? Or what ideas do you have for future pets?
Have a great Friday!! Happy name day to all the little Maximilians and Kolbes!!
My book, Catholic Baby Names for Girls and Boys: Over 250 Ways to Honor Our Lady (Marian Press, 2018), is available to order from ShopMercy.org and Amazon — perfect for expectant parents, name enthusiasts, and lovers of Our Lady!