Training your puppy or kitten to recognise their name will be one of the most important things you do for them, experts say.
Training your puppy or kitten to recognise their name will be one of the most important things you do for them, experts say. Contributed

Northern River owners barking mad for Bonnie and Pixie

BONNIE for dogs and Pixie for cats - these are the most popular canine and feline names in the Northern Rivers.

Pet Insurance Australia's top 2016 animal names for our region also show pooch lovers embraced Charlie, Missy, Gracie and Angel for their dish-lickers while Ralph, Suki, Amy and Apollo were the city's favoured kitten monikers.

The region's top 10 dog and cat names are short, sharp and simple, reflecting pet owners' innate ability to choose labels that pets will easily recognise and respond to.

Ocean Shores resident Lissie Walton has trained about 200 tail-waggers over the past 15 years.

Ms Walton said getting a pet to understand their name was one of the most important steps in training.

It was also vital to ensure the name did not sound like common commands such as no, sit, stay, come, down or fetch as animals sometimes struggled to tell the difference between similar sounding words.

"Think about the impression other people around you are going to get from the name you choose,” the Happy Leader Dog Training owner said.

"For example, if you buy a Rottweiler and call it Hunter or a fierce sounding name, people will instantly feel scared when you call its name.

"If you have a dog that looks fierce give it a soft name and people's perceptions of it will be positive.

"To teach your dog say their name and the moment they look at you pop a treat into their mouth.

"Use a friendly happy soft voice.

"When you feed the dog say their name, when you pat the dog say their name and what will happen is the association of the name with good outcomes will become so strong that when they hear their name they will race over to you.”

You can use dog name training techniques to teach cats to respond when called.

NORTHERN RIVERS' TOP 10 PET NAMES

DOGS, CATS

Bonnie, Pixie

Charlie, Ralph

Missy, Suki

Gracie, Amy

Angel, Apollo

Bear, Ariel

Buddy, Bluey

Chanel, Buddy

Chop, Caspian

Daisy, Cleo

Source: Pet Insurance Australia.

- ARM NEWSDESK



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