Veterinary Pet Insurance Reveals Top Names for 2005

"Max" wins the popular vote for third consecutive year.

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Many animal lovers add a new cat to their family during the holidays, according to Veterinary Pet Insurance Co., which also says getting to know a new pet is important before deciding upon a permanent name.

Many pet owners consider their pets to be members of their family, says Carol McConnell, DVM, manager of veterinary education and services for VPI. As such, they give them human names like Max, Molly or Maggie  underscoring  the fact that the human-animal bond is stronger than ever.

New pet owners should spend quality time with their pets, especially in the first week, to establish daily patterns of behavior and to observe unique traits that could translate into a name that matches their personality  such as Happy, or Diva.

Dr. McConnell also suggests names  that are short and easy to pronounce, and to use care not to choose a name that is too similar in sound to a command  such as Neil or Joe, which might be confused with Heel or No. Picking a name that is distinct from a command helps to keep training clear.

"Max" is the nations most popular pet name, based on data from VPIs 360,000 pet insurance policies. Other top names for cats in 2005 include: Tigger, Smokey, Tiger, Chloe, Shadow, Lucy, Angel, Oliver and Simba.

For more information, visit the Veterinary Pet Insurance Co. website.

Posted: Dec. 23, 2005, 5a.m. EST

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