New York City is a pet haven. In fact, New York residents own over an estimated 1 million pets while around 600,000 are dogs. Dogs are so beloved that owners often consider them as their own children and name them according to their unique personalities.

While dogs don’t have birth certificates like human children, New York state does want to keep legitimate records of their dogs. New York’s state law requires that all dog owners license their dogs, easily allowing the state to keep track of your canine in case of a public health concern. As a result, the law has offered us the ability to track all the dog names and their frequency in NYC.

Here are some interesting facts about dog names from the New York City Dog Census:

  1. The Most Popular Dog Name


Bella is the most popular dog name in the NYC. About 1195 dogs are named for the traditional Italian name which means “beautiful”. It’s remains the most popular dog name for the eighth year in a row. This also means there are more female dogs in NYC than male dogs.

  1. Most Unique Dog Names


Pumpkin ranked as one of the most unique dog names in neighborhoods including Borough Park, Brooklyn, Glendale, Brooklyn, East Elmhurst, Queens, and Woodlawn-Wakefield, the Bronx.

Other highly-ranked unique names that showed up in more than one neighborhood include Nellie, Rambo, King, Mandy, and Sheba.

  1. Most Popular Female Dog Names


The top five female dog names are:

  • Bella — 1195 dogs
  • Coco — 852 dogs
  • Lola — 795 dogs
  • Lucy — 710 dogs
  • Daisy — 649 dogs
  1. Most Popular Male Dog Names


The top five male dog names are:

  • Max –1153 dogs
  • Charlie — 856 dogs
  • Rocky — 823 dogs
  • Lucky — 723 dogs
  • Buddy — 677 dogs
  1. Rare Dog Names

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Some of the rarest dog names include:

  • Wasabi — 6 dogs
  • Puzzle — 3 dogs
  • IRONMAN — 2 dogs
  • Xochi — 1 dog
  • Biju — 1 dog
  1. Celebrity Dog Names


Some of the most popular celebrity names for dogs include:

  • Winston — 187 dogs
  • Elvis — 105 dogs
  • Bowie — 47 dogs
  • Napoleon — 46 dogs
  • Beethoven — 9 dogs
  1. Inspiration for Dog Names


An analysis shows that New Yorkers find inspiration for naming their dogs from foods, spices, and other animals. Some of the most popular names from the census include Ginger, Pepper, Olive, Bear, Moose, and Tiger.

Check out the corresponding map to see which dog names are the most rare, charming, and popular in New York City. You can search also search by name and find where your dog’s name ranks on the list.

This unique tool gives us an amusing insight into not only how many dogs live in NYC, but also the unique and creative naming process within each borough. Perhaps the dog census can offer inspiration for when you name your next pet!