The Names in our Shelter…What’s the Deal?

When animals come into our care nameless, who names them?

As the only open-admission shelter in Buncombe County, many animals come through our doors every day. Sometimes they are being surrendered and we know their names, other times they are found as strays and we have no idea what to call them.

Enter scene: the Buncombe County Shelter Admitting Team.

If you ever walk our halls and see a particularly silly name or one that gives you pause, chances are that it came from the admitting team. Tasked with the responsibility of naming countless animals, let’s just say names tend to get a little creative.

Inspiration is drawn from the appearance of the animal, a noticeable characteristic, themes, suggestions…and sometimes, it is just a spur of the moment decision that sticks.

Meet Ahchoo. Ahchoo was brought in as a stray and we did not know what to call this bouncy, eager girl. Pressed to name her and get her properly placed, an admitting team member asked for suggestions and sneeze. Someone sneezed. Thus was born: Ahchoo.

Below are some of our favorite names. Whether they have stayed the same after adoption is unclear, but one thing we do know is that these names brought smiles, chuckles, and a strong memory of that animal.

Lord Bigbeans: A polydactyl cat.

Lemon Drop: A cat who came in with a piece of candy stuck under her armpit.

Splatter: Named after an unfortunate mess on the lobby room floor.

Mr. Worldwide: A pitbull.

Greatest Of All Time: A goat.

Should’a Boy: A cat who really liked being on a staff members shoulder.

Gabagool: Named after an afternoon watching the Sopranos.

Lisa & Bart Simpson: Two dogs who came in at the same time. The girl was going to be named Lisa, but we have a staff member named Lisa, which could have been confusing. Thus, we needed a distinguishing name, and we got one!

Hiccup: Part of a kitten litter named after How to Train Your Dragon characters.

Spaghetti Western: We can all agree that after the end of a long day spaghetti is on our mind…the “western” part just came naturally.

Anna of Cleaves: Was part of a litter whose theme was lives of Henry the 8th, Catherine of Aragon, Katherine Howard, and Anne Boleyn were also in the litter.