Scottish Names for Dogs - With Meanings

By Jane Bertin, Journalist specialized in animal welfare. Updated: June 17, 2018
Scottish Names for Dogs - With Meanings

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Adopting a dog can be the best choice you ever make: No matter the breed or type, dogs are incredibly clever and caring animals that can form deep bonds with their human companions.

However, getting a dog is not a choice that to be taken lightly. As an owner, you'll have the responsibility of covering all their needs, training and socializing them properly. The first step to start training your new dog is giving them a name, but there are so many possibilities out there that coming across the perfect name for your dog can be a difficult task.

This is why here at AnimalWised we've compiled a list of Scottish names for dogs, including unisex, male and female names and their meanings.

You may also be interested in: Finnish Names for Dogs - With Meanings
Steps to follow:

How to choose the perfect name for your dog:

First and foremost, you must choose a name that you truly like. Some people name their pets after jokes, memes or popular culture references, but they get dated pretty fast and renaming a dog takes quite a lot of effort.

Some things you should take into account before choosing a name for your dog include:

  • It shouldn't be too long or too short: Experts recommend names that are two syllables long, three at the most. This way, you avoid confusing your dog and making the training more difficult than it needs to be.
  • You should never use the dog's name when scolding it. If you do, your dog might thing the name is a bad word that you use to punish them, and respond negatively whenever you call it.
  • The dog's name shouldn't sound similar to orders or words you use on a daily basis, as it would confuse them. For instance, Mo and "No" sound too similar.

We also recommend knowing the meaning of the name that you choose. This way, you will make sure that it fits your dog's personality, appearance, or the sort of relationship you have with them. Every pet deserves a unique, dignified and beautiful name, so why not choose a Scottish name for dogs?

Scottish Names for Dogs - With Meanings - Step 1

Why should you choose a Scottish name for your dog?

Most of the names we have compiled in our list of Scottish names for dogs come from Scottish Gaelic. This language, also called Gàidhlig, Scots Gaelic, or just Gaelic, is a Celtic language from the same family as Irish (Gaeilge) and Manx (Gaelg).

While it is a native language of Scotland, only a 1.1% of the population speaks it, mostly in the Outer Hebrides, the island chain in the northwestern coast. There have been efforts and policies to revive it; while choosing a Scottish Gaelic name for your dog will not preserve the language, it will awaken interest in it from everyone around you.

Scottish names are influenced by the general trends of English-speaking countries, but the most traditional names show the influence of other languages due to geographical or historical proximity like Irish, French and Old Norse.

Scots is another of the native languages of Scotland. It's a Germanic language that has been recognized as such and that is spoken in the south and east of Scotland and some parts of Ulster, Ireland.

There are many reasons to choose a Scottish name for your dog; they have beautiful sounds and meanings, they refer to well-known historical figures. They are a perfect choice if you have Scottish ancestry or if your dog belongs to a Scottish breed. Scottish dog breeds include:

  • Bearded Collie
  • Border Collie
  • Border Terrier
  • Cairn Terrier
  • Dandie Dinmont
  • Golden Retriever
  • Rough Collie
  • Scottish Deerhound
  • Scottish Terrier
  • Shetland Sheepdog (Sheltie)
  • Skye Terrier
  • Smooth Collie
  • West Highland White Terrier (Westie)

Sadly, some of these breeds are in the list of Vulnerable Native Breeds in the UK, as less than 300 puppies are registered every year and are considered at risk of disappearing.

You could also consider this list for your cat, especially if it's a Scottish Fold.

Scottish Names for Dogs - With Meanings - Step 2

Scottish names for female dogs:

Names according to appearance:

  • Aila: Oak tree
  • Barabal: Foreign
  • Cailean: Dove
  • Edna: Kernel
  • Eimhir: Swift
  • Fenella: White shoulder
  • Fergie: Man of vigor
  • Fiona: White
  • Grizel: Griselda; gray battle
  • Lassie: Young woman; name of a famous Rough Collie
  • Lileas: Lily
  • Liùsaidh: Light
  • Mór: Great
  • Morag: Diminutive of Mór
  • Morven: Big gap
  • Oighrig: Speckled one
  • Senga: Slender
  • Sorcha: Radiant

Names according to personality:

  • Aifric: Pleasant
  • Beitris: Traveler
  • Caitriona: Pure
  • Caoimhe: Gentle
  • Ealair: Cheerful
  • Gormlaith: Illustrious lady
  • Lorna: Victorious
  • Marsaili: Mars
  • Morna: Festive
  • Murdag: Sea warrior
  • Rona: Counselor
  • Slàine: Health

Historical or fictional Scottish women's names:

  • Abi: My father is joy
  • Aileen: Desired
  • Alba: Scotland
  • Brodie: After the character Jean Brodie
  • Caledonia: Rocky land
  • Effie: Well-spoken
  • Elspeth: My God is an oath
  • Flora: After Flora Macdonald, Jacobite heroine
  • Glenna: Valley
  • Inglis: After Elsie Inglis, doctor and suffragette
  • Iona: Island
  • Isobel: My God is an oath
  • Jean: God is gracious
  • Jessie: Diminutive of Jean
  • Kenna: Born of fire
  • Kirstin: Christian
  • Mairead: Margaret; daisy
  • Màiri: Mary
  • Maisie: Diminutive of Mairead
  • Malvina: Heroine of the Ossian cycle
  • Maura: Mary; great
  • McGonagall: After Minerva McGonagall, a character in Harry Potter
  • Moira: Mary; fate
  • Piper: Pipe player
  • Rhona: Island
  • Sheena: God is gracious
  • Tara: Crag
Scottish Names for Dogs - With Meanings - Step 3

Scottish names for male dogs:

Names according to appearance:

  • Alpin: White
  • Artair: Bear
  • Cailean: Young dog
  • Calum: Dove
  • Coinneach: Handsome
  • Conall: Strong wolf
  • Dougal: Dark stranger
  • Duff: Dark
  • Duncan: Brown warrior
  • Eachann: Brown horse
  • Fergus: Man of vigor
  • Finlay: White warrior
  • Grant: Great
  • Laddie: Young man
  • Rorie: Red king
  • Ruadh: Red
  • Tasgall: God's helmet

Names according to personality:

  • Aidan: Fire
  • Aindrea: Manly
  • Angus: One strength
  • Archibald: Bold master
  • Bhaltair: Ruler of the army
  • Fearchar: Dear man
  • Heckie: Hector; holding fast
  • Mungo: Gentle
  • Murdo: Sea warrior
  • Naomhán: Little saint
  • Neil: Champion
  • Stuart: Steward, guardian
  • Sweeney: Well-going
  • Tadg: Poet

Historical or fictional Scottish men's names:

  • Alan: Rock
  • Alasdair: Leader of men
  • Aneirin: Brythonic poet of the 6th Century
  • Balfour: Surname of the hero of Kidnapped
  • Beathan: Life
  • Bruce: Surname of the king Robert the Bruce
  • Burns: After Robert Burns, Scottish poet
  • Cináed: Born of fire
  • Craig: Crag
  • Deacon: After Deacon Brodie, part-time burglar
  • Deòrsa: Farmer
  • Desmond: After Desmond Hume, a character in Lost
  • Ewan: Born from the yew tree
  • Fingal: Hero of the Ossian cycle
  • Forbes: Field
  • Fraser: Surname
  • Gavin: From Gawain, legendary knight
  • Glen: Valley
  • Graham: Homestead; surname
  • Greyfriars Bobby: Name of a famous Skye Terrier
  • Hamish: Jacob; supplanter
  • Hume: After David Hume, philosopher
  • Iain: God is gracious
  • Ivor: Archer
  • Keir: Surname
  • Keith: Wood; surname
  • Lachlan: Norwegian
  • Macbeth: Scottish king immortalized by Shakespeare
  • Malcolm: Disciple of St Columba
  • McGonagall: Notably terrible Scottish poet
  • Montgomery: After Montgomery Scott, a character in Star Trek
  • Muir: Moor, sea; surname
  • Murray: Settlement by the sea; surname
  • Nicol: Victory of the people
  • Ninian: Saint who converted the Picts
  • Pàdraig: Patrick; nobleman
  • Rabbie: Diminutive of Robert; bright fame
  • Rob Roy: Folk hero immortalized by Walter Scott
  • Tam Lin: Hero of Scottish Border ballads
  • Wallace: Foreigner, after William Wallace
Scottish Names for Dogs - With Meanings - Step 4

Unisex Scottish names for dogs and puppies:

  • Ainsley: Solitary woodland; surname
  • Arran: Island in Scotland
  • Athol: Region in Scotland
  • Bairn: Baby
  • Barclay: Birch wood; surname
  • Blair: Battlefield; surname
  • Bonnie: Beautiful
  • Cameron: Crooked nose; surname
  • Campbell: Crooked mouth; surname
  • Cannie: Smart, clever
  • Dafty: Silly
  • Embra: Nickname of Edinburgh
  • Greer: Alert
  • Haggis: Traditional Scottish food
  • Highlander: From the Scottish Highlands
  • Lennox: Surname
  • Lindsay: Region in
  • Logan: Little hollow; surname
  • Lomond: A loch in Scotland
  • Nessie: Nickname of the Loch Ness monster
  • Scotch: Malt or grain whisky made in Scotland
  • Skye: Island in Scotland
  • Stirling: City in Scotland
  • Tartan: Traditional Scottish pattern
  • Thistle: National flower of Scotland
  • Tweed: River in Scotland
Scottish Names for Dogs - With Meanings - Step 5

Have you found the right name among our Scottish names for dogs? Do you have more ideas? Tell us in the comments section!

If you still haven't found the perfect name for your dog, take a look at our other lists:

Scottish Names for Dogs - With Meanings - Step 6

If you want to read similar articles to Scottish Names for Dogs - With Meanings, we recommend you visit our Names category.

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