Barbara Fitzgerald is an AKC Breeder of Merit and author of the column "Conversations with Champions" for the BCSA magazine, Borderlines.
How Native American Names Are Chosen
Naming conventions vary between tribes. In many instances, individuals will have more than one name, and in some tribes people will change or gain names throughout their lives.
Native American children may by born with one name, which may change during rituals at puberty, as part of a rebirth ceremony. Names may be added on to the birth name and coming of age name, to commemorate heroic deeds and important events in one's life.
Additionally, sacred spirit names exist, that are only known between the individual and the tribe's Medicine Man. These names are kept in confidence, because of the power that is given over the individual, when another utters their spirit name. In this manner, using Native American naming conventions offers an endless fount of joy, in adding names to your dog's chosen call name.
For instance, you could name your dog "Bear" from one of the language choices below, and add on to it translations of the "Squirrel Hunter" or the "Butterfly Chaser," which would, for example, be "Nova" in the Hopi language.
The bond shared between man and dog is the most profound of any two species. If you have a new pet entering your life, consider some of these meaningful Indian names to help convey the mystical bond between you and your new best friend.
Native American Tribes That Make Pretty Dog Names
There are hundreds of Native American tribes that once covered North America. Often we do not realize that our states, rivers and parks are named for these lyrical tribal nations. Here we have selected those tribal names, that best make pretty female dog names.
Female Native American Spirit Dog Names
These Native American name selections celebrate specific spirit attributes. As you gain an understanding of your dog's unique personality, these names can celebrate accomplishments or remarkable deeds performed by your companion.
- Arizona: Means "Little Spring, " which makes a nice name for a small, active dog.
- Aylen: Means "Joy."
- Catori: Means "She is Spirit."
- Cheyenne: Means "Speaker of a Foreign Language." A cute name for a dog that barks a lot.
- Enola: Means "The Solitary One."
- Fala: Means "Crow." Fala makes a nice name for a black dog.
- Halona: Iroquois for "Happy Fortune."
- Halyn: Means Unique or Uncommon."
- Kachina: Means "Dancing Spirit."
- Kaliska: Means "Coyote Chasing Deer."
- Kimama: Means "Butterfly Girl."
- Naira: Means "Girl with Large Eyes."
- Nizhoni: Means "Pretty."
- Pipaluk: Means "Little One."
- Pocahontas: Means "Frisky One."
- Sayen: Means "Loveable."
- Tadita: Means "The Running One."
More Meaningful Spirit Dog Names
The One Searched For
Child of Importance
Peak / New Moon
Souix / English
Dressed in Furs
The Brave, The Courageous
Native American Nature Spirit Dog Names
One Who Runs
To Fly Around
To Catch Up With
Indigenous Names for Large and Powerful Female Dogs
Child of Importance
Indian Words That Make Great Dog Names
Akando: An ambush.
Count Coup: The gaining of prestige by showing valor in the face of the enemy, while risking one's life.
Hialeah: Beautiful prairie.
Kemosabe: One who does not understand or trusty scout.
Powwow: Native American conference that involves feasting, dancing and chanting.
Tepee: Portable dwelling.
Tonto: Sidekick to the Lone Ranger, might mean "idiot."
Totem: Symbolic or emblematic depiction representing a tribe or family.
Native American Indian Names for Small Girl Dogs
First Born Daughter
Native American Animal Names
Still Need Some Inspiration? Try These Ideas
- 40 Cute Names for Female Hunting Dogs
Cute name ideas for female hunting dogs, pointers, retrievers, spaniels and more, from history and mythology as well as film and literature.
- 20 Female Greek Names That Make Cool Dog Names
Greek Goddesses and Heroines have amazing powers and gifts that every good dog could use. This list contains meaningful names for your new female dog that will enhance her canine super-powers.
- 30 Cute Dog Names From Cartoon Characters
Looking for cute dog names? These cartoon characters elicit fond memories that will help you bond quickly with your new canine companion.
- Female Dog Names: 50 Most Popular Names for Female D...
The 50 most popular female dog names of the last 10 years and their meanings. Names may come and go in popularity, some are always in fashion; the meaning of some of these dog names may surprise you.
- Strong Dog Names – 18 Irish and Scottish Names for...
Looking for an unusual name for your new male dog? Celtic history and legend provide a rich pantheon of untapped dog names.
Native American Dog Gathering at Lake Selmac (No Barking!)
Kimberly on July 01, 2020:
I'm trying to find a female Indian names for a gray eyed puppy
Shay on January 05, 2020:
I spent almost an hour dreaming over this site. I have two male dogs and no plans for a girl.
Charlala on March 07, 2019:
We had a dog growing up already named Cheena (spelling could be wrong), supposedly named after a river or lake in Alaska.
chyenoa on January 21, 2019:
does anyone know the meaning and origin of the name chyenoa
Rafiki on December 08, 2018:
I am looking for a name for my female mini Heeler I am getting at the end of the month. She's a beautiful mottled red and brown with a mask and a beautiful white mark on her forehead. I'm moving to a farm so she will be my companion on the farm, in the house, the car ..... everywhere.
Okami on July 13, 2018:
I have a name meaning wolf but I am having twins and i want names that mean dog or wolf in someway but i can’t find ones I like though
Can someone help me please?
Patti on July 03, 2018:
Adopting a Reservation rescue. She's a cattle dog mix with white and blue eyes. Considering where she came from and her unusual eyes, I thought a Native American name would be nice. Any ideas? Maybe something to do with beautiful eyes....
Meg on May 25, 2018:
Looking for a Native name for a female husky. Lost my soul dog and looking after a year and a half for an addition to our family and having a very hard time in my heart because I miss my girl so much. We had a connection like no other ...my husband has Cherokee lineage and trying to find something unique.. right now her name from the resque is Siri but would like to see if we can get something that sounds similar with a beautiful and heartfelt meaning that speaks to me. Our other dog right now is names Matsi .. meaning Sweet and Brave I would greatly appreciate some suggestions .. thank you so so much in advance
Pam Zell on May 25, 2018:
Hi Solaras! I have read all of your puppy name suggestions and love all of them. I have a White Swiss Shepherd female puppy coming from Europe and I am looking for an unusual but also noble name for her. Thank you!
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on April 27, 2018:
Hi Melita: Basenjis are unusual dogs! Since they yodel instead of bark, "Kanti" might be a good kennel name. It is Algonquin for "Sings."
"Tesem" refers to the ancient dogs of the Pharaohs; they can be seen in hieroglyphs on the ancient pharaohs tombs, looking very much the same as the basenji does today. That would make a very noble name for a basenji kennel.
Melita Vela on April 26, 2018:
Hi I looking for good kennel name for breed Basenji they are very special breed who come from Congo. ( Swahili language) They are Wilde, clever and very old primitive breed who don't change at all.
Michelle MacLean on April 10, 2018:
Hi my Cane Corso. Duchess of York Region. Gave birth to 10 puppies 8 weeks ago. I have 1 left nice chunky girl. I wanted to keep one girl. As duchess had 8 girls 2 boys. One boy born without a tail. And walks a little funny. I call him Little Bear. But this one girl needs a good strong name. And I love native American names. Any suggestions?
mario molina on March 07, 2018:
i have a grey and blue eyes German shepherd female...i need a native American name please...
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on February 25, 2018:
It looks like a red merle border collie puppy.
Ashley Patteson on February 23, 2018:
Does anyone know what kind of dog that is in the pictures above, the one shown with this. My boyfriend and I have been tryin to figure out what kind it is so we could get our lil girl one. Pleasssse help haha thanks!
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on February 22, 2018:
Cattle dogs are tough little dogs: Hinto means Blue, Waneta means Charger and Kasa means dressed in furs. All pretty female names!
Analyse Connor Dasher on February 22, 2018:
love your dog!!! soooo beautiful!
Any who, we are thinking to get a blue cattle dog and i need a name. i am thinking about Dakota, but would love more ideas!!!
Analyse Connor Dasher on February 22, 2018:
we might get some dogs soon and i am trying to find a good female dog name!! i like the name Dakota meaning friend or ally. and the name Shadow, but i don't know the meaning for that name.
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on February 01, 2018:
Hi Natoma: The names Tala means wolf; Kasa means dressed in furs. I hope that is helpful!
Natoma on February 01, 2018:
I am looking for a name for my female wolf pup, would like it in American Indian and it's meaning. She is black tan and her silver is starting to come out across her shoulders.
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on January 18, 2018:
Stikini is the Seminole owl god or spirit. Mongwu is the Hopi Owl spirit. For more on owl eyes and legend, you can checkout this book: Owl's Eyes & Seeking a Spirit: Kootenai Indian Stories Paperback – January 1, 2000
by Kootenai Culture Committee (Author) from Flathead Reservation.
Ken on January 18, 2018:
My border collie has eyes like an owl,does anyone know how to say owl eyes in native American
Dennis McCormick on October 21, 2017:
Looking for a Cherokee name for a female bichon. She is very small and will only reach about 10 pounds when grown. Bichon's are small lap dogs and I’m am wanting a Cherokee name because my late wife was part Cherokee. Thanks!
Tina on August 21, 2017:
Have chosen the name Nina Kai. Which means Strong Willow Tree. I believe this is a perfect name for her.
Tina on August 21, 2017:
Looking for a name for a great dane great pyrenees mix female. She is kinda gold in color but she is going to be a gentle giant. I have been wanting a large dog for some time and finally found one. Could you help me.
Misfox on August 08, 2017:
Looking for a good name for our rescue boxer pup. She's 6 months old and solid white with a brown spot around her left eye.
becky g. on July 14, 2017:
my new german shepherd female was born a week ago, and she is all black. She is a strong powerful pup. I am wanting to give her a strong powerful name with a strong meaning.
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on June 10, 2017:
Hi Becki: Winona means first born daughter and weeko means pretty. Those could be nice names for a female springer spaniel. Good luck with your new pup!
Becki on June 08, 2017:
I am getting a female Springer Spaniel pup and I'm struggling with a name. I had Kenai picked out for a husky, but hubby said no to the breed, so now I'm lost.
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on June 08, 2017:
I used to date a fellow from Chippewa Falls! Chippewa is another pronunciation of Ojibwe. The Ojibwe people traditionally have spoken the Ojibwe language, a branch of the Algonquian language family. Here are some Algonquin words that might be useful for names. Miskwa means red, Makwa means bear, Atim means dog in Ojibwe, Kupi means yes, Menatona means one who listens well, Pyas means come here, and Tinda means fire. Hope that helps in finding a name for your service dog!
Kim on June 07, 2017:
I just received a "Red" laborador retriever that I need to name. She is 19 months old, and will be used as a service dog. I am looking for a unique Native American name, as I am part Chippewa. Can you help think of a fitting name?
Siouxsun on May 24, 2017:
Oh gosh, I'm going to be a spoil sport. I do not think it honors Native American cultures to name your pet from them. The Native cultural histories are in reality a very harsh story, nothing to be romanticized. What is left of Native cultures today is proud but struggling tribes. It's not fun. It's not cute. To top it off, you should know that some tribes feasted on dogs and puppies. Really.
Annetta on May 15, 2017:
We are meeting our new puppy in person for the first time this coming weekend. We have only seen adorable pictures. She is Husky mixed with wolf. She is also is a super special new addition to our family because she has a handicap. One of her front paws/leg is deformed. as soon as we heard about her we all were ready and willing to love and take on this responsibility immediately. Looking for THE PERFECT meaningful but also catchy name. Need help please thank you
stephanie on May 12, 2017:
Sadly our new sweet Rhodesian Ridgeback died from Parvo at only 9 weeks old. We will be getting another one in a few weeks so I would love a name for her. Something that might me Second chances or luck. Thanks for your help
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on April 13, 2017:
Hi Gillian: Koa is a good female name for brave, and Kekoa means The Brave or The Courageous in Hawaiian. Aloha!
Gillian on April 13, 2017:
I am bringing my rescue dog home next week who was found fending for herself and picked up by the SPCA. She is a terrier cross and is so ugly that it was love at first sight. I would love to give her a name that means brave.
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on March 24, 2017:
It's pronounced tip-ON-ey
Barry on March 24, 2017:
How do you pronounce Tiponi, from Hopi ?
Karla on February 24, 2017:
Hi, I have a beautiful female collie who runs and barks at the thunder and lightening. would you have a name that means "chases thunder"?
Linda on January 14, 2017:
Thank you very much.
Solaras on January 09, 2017:
Hi Linda: I believe are correct on the pronunciation of Mika. For the name Yazhi it is pronounced YA-zshee. I hope that helps.
Linda on January 08, 2017:
How do you pronounce Yazhi? And is Mika pronounced Mecca or Mika (long I)
I have boy and girl Yorkie. One looks like a raccoon face and one looks like a bear.
Glenda on December 29, 2016:
I have recently lost my tiny female Yorkie with the Baby Doll face. I have always had tiny Yorkies . I recently found out that I am 3/4 Cherokee on my Grandmothers side and that my Grandfather's grandmother was full blood Cherokee. I was hoping to find a Cherokee name for my new little puppy.
Could you help me please?
J on December 20, 2016:
Sorry - it's bugging me so much, but Sioux is spelt wrong in the tables - it's written "Souix" in quite a few bits
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on December 20, 2016:
Hi Veronica: I say the Hawaiian name: KOA which means strong and brave.
Veronica chong on December 15, 2016:
Hi, Please help me, is possible you find a native name for a female husky, she is very pretty, fluffy playful, affectionate, intelligent and strong are his most outstanding qualities. I would greatly appreciate your help. Thank you
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on November 30, 2016:
Hi Tammy: Yazhi means little one if your rescue is a chihuahua. Tiponi means child of importance. It's nice to give a dog who has had a rough life a name of importance!
Tammy on November 30, 2016:
Hi, i was wondering what would be a good name for a little girl dog that has had a rough life, iam going to rescue her, she a chichacha, sorry i messed up her breed name . ...thank you :)
Brandi on November 26, 2016:
Looking for a strong name for a blue female pit.
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on November 16, 2016:
Hi mamagoose: WHile these are not native american names, they do mean mans' defender and protector:
Lexie - Greek. Similar to Alexis, Lexie means "man's defender."
Minna - German. Man's defender.
Sasha - Russian. Derived from the Greek name, Sondra, Sasha means "man's defender."
mamagoose on November 16, 2016:
looking for a strong name for our new female Akita (bear dog) considering Nita - but would also like name for gaurdian, protector...that kind of thing. Any suggestions?
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on November 08, 2016:
Hi Doc: Thanks for the new Native American name for a foxy red dog, like a Basenji.
Doc on November 07, 2016:
Tsula = Pronounced (chew-lah) = Meaning (Red Fox or Fox)
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on October 12, 2016:
Hi Jammie: Aquene means peaceful - which would be a lovely name for a gentle pitbull puppy.
Jammie on October 10, 2016:
I need a name for a female pitbull she is very gentle and playful
camela on July 11, 2016:
im looking for a name for my new german shepard pup, i have a 17 yr old GSD n her name is wayla. plz help
Dawn on July 10, 2016:
I would like a name for my new cockapoo she is red in colour , springy , fun I already have another make cockapoo his name is Bear
Our family live in Canada we recently stayed in Rama which is from the Chippawa tribe but I'm happy with a nice cute name from any tribe x
Lisa on July 06, 2016:
I'm getting a shepard/wolf puppy female she is only a week old right now. She is what i have always wanted. She needs a special strong name. Any suggestions?
Suzi on July 02, 2016:
Hi, my husband and recently added a red heeler to our family. She is 3 months old, very energetic and loves to chase our German Shepherd Abigail. I need a name for her, she is very curious and energetic.
Heidi Hertig on July 02, 2016:
I'm looking for Native American names for our new black lab pup!! She's got very large ears & seems to get into EVERYTHING even at a year & 1/2 old, haha!! She came with the name Chloe but I'd like something more unique & she doesn't seem to care what we call her!! She follows my son everywhere he goes & loves to snuggle too!! Very inquisitive so anyway, anything you think may fit my description would be appreciated!! Thanks!! :-)
Coloradomama on June 23, 2016:
Hi! What a cool site! We are going to be the proud parents of a beautiful English Creme Golden Retriever puppy. We would love to name her Charlotte, but have her AKC name have a Native American theme. Any ideas that start with C that will work for our future princess? You're the best!
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on May 15, 2016:
Hi Natalie: Wyanet means beautiful and strong.
natalie on May 15, 2016:
hi ! so glad i found this page. I am getting my cane corso /black lab in June. I love native names and there meanings. I am looking for a name , that means beauty , strong , love and gift . Any help would be great. Thank you in advance.
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on May 02, 2016:
Hi Duhrel: Nova means chases butterflies and Kasa means dressed in furs, both would be cute names for your retriever mix! Thanks for visiting!
duhrel on May 01, 2016:
My girlfriend and I just adopted a small retriever mix rescue. What would a couple good names for her?
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on March 29, 2016:
Hi Travis: I am sorry to hear about the emergency c-section. I am glad you have a little fighter with spirit. Hototo is Hopi for "warrior spirit who sings." You can call her Toto for short!
Travis H Henk on March 29, 2016:
We just had our female have an emergency C-section and only one of her puppies survived we're going to have to bottle feed this puppy she's a little fighter with a strong Spirit do you have a recommendation thanks and thank you for this website I love it
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on March 17, 2016:
Hi Angie: You might consider the Choctaw name Nita - it means bear.
angie on March 16, 2016:
need a female name for a Newfoundland pup
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on October 31, 2015:
Hi Heather: Colestah was a real life Native American medicine woman. She was known as a medicine woman, psychic, and warrior.
Also, and I am not sure on the pronunciation, Changing Woman in Navajo is Asdzaa nádleehé. She brings order and life to mankind.
Heather on October 31, 2015:
I just recently lost my puppy and it has been 10 days and Im still mourning a great deal. Well because of this we decided to go get a female puppy. What my question is are there any names for females that mean healer or something along those lines?
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on October 13, 2015:
Thanks for dropping by! Achak is the Algonquin name for Spirit, and Aranck is the word for Stars.
Misty on October 13, 2015:
What is the name for Star or spirit , ty
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on July 29, 2015:
Hi Candace: Angeni means Indian spirit or angel. Thanks for visiting!
Candace on July 29, 2015:
I'm looking for a Name For My White Boxer (Female) Puppy, I Kinda Wanna Find Something That Means Angel.
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on July 13, 2015:
Hi Lysanne - The name Onida means "the one searched for" - that might make a pretty name for your new girl!
Lysanne Faith10 on July 12, 2015:
we are looking for a name for our new puppy. she is 80-90% Texas red wolf. She likes to howl and talk. We have looked along time for her, therefore she is very special to us!
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on April 25, 2015:
Hi Sandra: Azeban is the trickster raccoon in Native American legend, who plays tricks on people and other animals, but usually ends up learning a lesson as a result.. That might be a cute name for either a boy or a girl coon dog.
Sandra on April 24, 2015:
I'm a coon hunter is there words Native American that describes this
Kristi on March 13, 2015:
Thank you solaras, i like that name
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on March 13, 2015:
Hi Kristi: If she loves to play in water, Yoki is a cute name. It means rain!
Kristi on March 13, 2015:
I have a female red nosed pitt i am looking for a good name. She is smart and loving and loves to play in water
Melanie on November 30, 2014:
Hey , is there any female names meaning protector or child protector like that?
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on November 26, 2014:
Hi Taylor: Iolani is Hawaiian and female for Royal Hawk, and Cetan is a unisex name in Lakota for Hawk - I hope that helps!
taylor on November 26, 2014:
Is there any names meaning hawk or anything like that for a female?? I have a blue healer puppy and I don't know what to name her
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on September 12, 2014:
Hi alexadry - Thanks for dropping by! I love thinking of unique names for cats and dogs.
Adrienne Farricelli on September 12, 2014:
Nice collection of names here, will refer my clients who search for names.
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on September 12, 2014:
Hi Neon Wolf - Thanks for dropping by and reading. I am not sure what your question is.
Neon wolf on September 12, 2014:
Is there any names? (I sorry if is a dumb question)