Barbara Fitzgerald is an AKC Breeder of Merit and author of the column "Conversations with Champions" for the BCSA magazine, Borderlines.
Emotional Support, Therapy and Service Dog Benefits to Humans
Over the last two decades, dogs have been finding new ways to expand their role as man's best friend, helping us to enjoy life to its fullest extent. From guide dogs to trained "alert" canines, service dogs make it possible for their humans to proceed in life with greater confidence that they will be equipped to deal with the unexpected, thanks to the support of their four-legged companion.
Recent studies have shown that animal-assisted therapy has not only short-term benefits, but that long-term benefits exist through the reduction of cortisol levels from stress for victims of trauma. Those suffering from depression also experience benefits from the empathy provided by their emotional support companions. The presence of dogs not only lowers our blood pressure and stress levels, but their devotion also alleviates the effects of both physical and emotional pain.
These names for dogs celebrate the strength and quiet wisdom canines deliver through their loving comfort and support of their human companions.
Therapy Dog Names for Males
Aegis: Shield or armor.
Berwin: Welsh, meaning blessing.
Boon: A thing that is helpful.
Dillon: Irish, meaning "a ray of hope."
Foster: Encourage, cultivate and nurture.
Harbor: Shelter or sanctuary.
Haven: Safe place.
Nimbus: Circle of light or halo surrounding a holy entity.
Noble: Righteous, virtuous and worthy.
Worthy: Exemplary, ethical and principled.
Zane: Hebrew, meaning gift or prayed for.
Meaningful Therapy Dog Names for Females
Abigail: Hebrew for father's joy. Name your girl Abigail, and you can call her Abbie.
Ashia: Arabic, meaning life and hope.
Boost: Help or encourage.
Bounty: Help and support.
Corona: Circle of light, similar to a halo; tasty Mexican beer served with a wedge of lime.
Halo: Circle of light surrounding the head of a saint or holy person.
Jesse: Hebrew, meaning gift.
Kibou: Japanese, meaning hope.
Kit: Greek, Hope and carrier of Christ.
Makas: Hebrew, meaning Hope.
Merritt: Good deeds deserving of future reward.
Nadia: Russian, meaning hope.
Zita: Spanish, meaning little hope. A good name for a smaller female therapy dog.
Names for Dogs That Mean "Comfort"
Emotional support animals (ESA) may be prescribed for those with certified mental or emotional disabilities. These companion animals provide benefits to those afflicted with mental or emotional disorders. While not trained to perform specific tasks, their devotion and calm demeanor improve their human's quality of life.
These dogs are frequently seen wearing harnesses with the ESA patch, as well as "No Petting." While ESA animals do not have the same protections as service dogs in entrance to all public venues, requests for admission are frequently met with greater receptivity for those dogs wearing the labeled vest.
These kindly dog names celebrate the emotional support companion's role as comforter-in-chief.
Binkie: Childhood source of comfort, often a special blanket.
Bond: A force or feeling that unites people; 007 secret agent.
Cozy: A feeling of comfort and warmth.
Faith: Trust, belief and confidence.
Edge: Benefit or favored position; U2 guitarist, The Edge.
Grace: Free and unmerited favor of God.
Honor: A person or thing that brings credit; honest or held in high esteem.
Hope: A person or thing that may save someone.
Mercy: Compassion or forgiveness.
Paccie: Short for pacifier.
Pacific: Calm or tranquil.
Quell: to calm or quiet.
Shine: Very talented; glowing and beaming.
Spirit: Soul, psyche or supernatural being.
Meaningful Names for Male Service Dogs
Service dogs may be trained to perform in over a dozen specializations to assist those of us with special needs, from guide dog service to seizure, diabetic and allergy alert dogs. These dogs can be identified with harnesses emblazoned with the Service Dog Patch, which grants admission to all public places.
Each canine service specialization requires the companion to learn a series of specific responses to our requirements with indefatigable dependability. Watchfulness, strength and bravery are hallmarks of the reliable service dog. These names for dogs are inspired by the requisite strength and endless support these companions provide to their human partner.
Angus: Celtic god, meaning one strength.
Aaron: Means mountain of strength.
Boris: Russian, meaning fighter.
Charger: A horse trained for battle.
Ethan: Means strong and firm.
Extra: Something in addition to what is strictly necessary.
Gallant: Brave and heroic.
Garreth: Meaning strong with spears.
Gusto: Extreme enjoyment in doing something.
Kai: Hawaiian, meaning brave and strong.
Kalmin: Means manly and strong.
Keen: Acute, astute and perceptive.
Kerr: Man of strength.
Jedi: Intuitive warrior.
Liam: Irish, meaning strong-willed warrior.
Oscar: Meaning divine strength.
Owen: Welsh, meaning noble warrior.
Renny: Meaning compact strength.
Sulley: Irish, derived from the name Sullivan, which means hawk-eyed. The name of President George Herbert Walker Bush's service dog.
Tyrus: meaning rock strong.
Names for Strong Female Service Dogs
Bree: Irish, meaning strong.
Briana: Irish, strong, virtuous and honorable.
Bridget: Irish, meaning strong.
Constance: Latin, meaning constant, persistent and sustained. Name your girl Constance, and you can call her Connie.
Epic: Heroic or grand in scale or character.
Kaya: Hopi, meaning elder sister and wise child.
Milly: Strong in work and strong-willed.
Nike: Greek goddess of victory, Nike is a winged goddess who soars over battlefields, bestowing glory and laurels on the victors.
Pallas: Greek heroine and best friend of Athena, goddess of wisdom. When Athena accidentally killed her best friend, Pallas, during a mock fight, Athena took on her companion's name to immortalize her as Pallas Athena.
Prudence: Wisdom, common sense and good judgement; name your girl Prudence, and you can call her Pru.
Sage: Wise and knowing.
Saffi: Greek, meaning wisdom.
Sophia: Greek, meaning wisdom.
Tilda: Strong in war.
Veda: Sanskrit, meaning wise.
Wow: To impress or excite greatly.
Names for Dogs That Mean "Love"
Aloha: Hawaiian, means "hello, goodbye and I love you."
Ardour: French, passionate love.
Fancy: To admire.
Flame: Holding a torch for another.
Fling: Brief, intense romance.
Honey: Term of endearment.
Koi: Japanese, noun meaning "love."
Liebe: German, meaning love.
Lufu: Old English, meaning love, affection and friendliness.
Philia: Greek, meaning dispassionate love, loyalty and affection.
Suki: Japanese, meaning love.
Swain: Male admirer.
Xenia: Greek, meaning love.
Yen: Desire or yearning.
Names for Supportive Superhero Sidekicks
Batgirl: Barbara Gordon, daughter of Commissioner Gordon, shows up as Batgirl to save the day whenever both Batman and Robin find themselves in a pickle.
Dino: Flintstone's canine and Jerry Lewis' counterpart, Dean Martin.
Gogo: Sidekick to O-Ren Ishii in Kill Bill.
Kato: The Green Hornet's sidekick.
Krypto: Also known as Superdog, Krypto hails from Krypton and assists Superman with his super canine abilities.
Olsen: Jimmy Olsen, friend of Clark Kent, is Superman's constant companion and a favorite subject for rescue.
Robin: Batman's young ward, Dick Grayson, and fellow caped crusader.
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on September 08, 2020:
Hi Koi commenter. Here is the low down on the word koi in Japanese, as well as the fish you are thinking of:
In Japanese, both "ai （愛）" and "koi （恋）" can be roughly translated as "love" in English. However, the two characters have a slightly different nuance.
The Koi Fish represents, in Japanese culture, good fortune or luck; they also are associated with perseverance in adversity and strength of purpose. Therefore the Koi fish symbolizes good luck, abundance and perseverance. Symbolically, in Buddhism, the Koi fish represents courage.
Koi makes a great dog name for a companion who offers love, and supports his owner in perseverance in the face of adversity.
Thanks for visiting and commenting.
"koi" doesn't mean love in Japanese on September 07, 2020:
It means fish.
Mamarazor on August 29, 2020:
I wanted to name my next mobility service dog razor she will be a rottweiler but i want to know does the name seem to intimidating and i should pick another i love the name cause its after my character i work as
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on May 14, 2020:
Hi Service Dog Handler: Service vests are not required, but can be helpful to keep people from petting or distracting dogs while at work. A badge that says "Service Dog, Please Do Not Pet" lets people know not to offer treats or attention.
Service dog handler on May 13, 2020:
Service dogs don't need a vest to go in public.
DOUG on May 07, 2020:
I can't even know what to choose from!
no on April 07, 2020:
i dont think corona is a good name
Barbara Fitzgerald (author) from Georgia on December 05, 2018:
Thanks Liz: Feel free to suggest any names you think would be appropriate for Therapy and Service dogs!
Liz Westwood from UK on December 05, 2018:
This is a great list of names for man's best friends.