Feline Friday: The nicknaming of cats

by Kimberly on September 22, 2006

in Cats

3660-sasha

When we brought him home with us four years ago, we knew him only as Sasha. His foster mom gave him that name, and his brother another Russian name, Sergei.

Thanks to TS Elliott, we know that Sasha, like all cats, has a couple of names to which we’ll never be privy. That doesn’t stop us from guessing, and giving him lots of nicknames in the process: Mr. Stripe. Bearface. Rufty Tufty. Fluffhead. Mrrrrup (for the trilling sound he makes). Tufty-toes. Captain McKitten (for the superhero tabby M on his forehead). Sasha Bear Stripey Hair Fuzziest Kitty Anywhere. Oh, and Fang.

Do you give your cat(s) nicknames? Do you think they know?

The McKittens don’t care what we call them, as long as we take them for a ride on the Friday Ark. They might share their names with the felines at the House of Chaos, which hosts the Carnival of the Cats on Sunday. Weekend Cat Blogging #68 is at ChefSarahJane this weekend.

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

1 joanna September 22, 2006 at 3:25 am

Oh, sure they know. Snickerdoodle has about a hundred nicknames based on his name alone–Snick, Dude, Nickers, Snicholas Von Strudel, Doodster and Doozie. He knows. Better yet, he takes it in stride.

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2 Babeth September 22, 2006 at 8:23 am

Oh sure I do… mostly in my native Dutch, to name just a few:
* Zorro: Blafkat (barking cat)
* Loup-Garou: Mafkat (sleepy cat, also crazy cat)
* Bean Sidhe: Mormel (small monster)
* Caramel: de Roaring Rosse (language mix here… the roaring redhead)
* and the winner is…: the unlamented Rataplan Frankenstein The Mobile Disaster Area, Horsehunter, Master Barfer, Walking Cesspit And Bloody Awkward Nuisance On Paws. All at once. (translated for your convenience… in original Dutch: Rataplan Frankenstein Het Mobiele Rampgebied, Paardenjager, Meesterbraker, Wandelende Beerput En Verdomd Rottige Laspak Op Pootjes)

They also all answer to the nick-name: .

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3 Babeth September 22, 2006 at 8:24 am

oops, editing error… the nick-name that sounds like

“sound of a can being opened”

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4 Debra September 22, 2006 at 8:38 am

I think that they do know all of their nicknames…in fact I think that they can ‘read us like a book’ and probably know us better than we know ourselves sometimes.

Debra

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5 C.B. September 22, 2006 at 8:48 am

I really think my cat thought her name was, “Heeeeeey!” (said in a high-pitched and happy “oh, aren’t you sweet?” kind of way). Saying it would usually result in her trotting quickly from wherever she was hanging out, and arriving in my lap!

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6 lindy September 22, 2006 at 9:57 am

I’m getting up my nerve to post a picture of my cats- the only one so far that is not a total whirr. You will be able to tell which one is sometimes called “blondie bear”. The other nicknames are even more embarassing.I try to remember to limit my use of the truly awful ones when other people are present, but they sometimes slip out.

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7 michelle September 22, 2006 at 4:25 pm

Ruby – Ruby Mama, Ruby Dee, Ruby Keeler, littles

Bella – Large Marge, Waddle, bigs

I would list the rest but those are mostly expletives

oh, and my friend has a cat named Steve who’s nickname is Stevetard. :)

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8 lynne September 22, 2006 at 6:03 pm

When I was struggling to name my kitty I thought that he would have many nicknames but now that you have me thinking about it I don’t think I have any aside from Jazzy Boy! (official name is Jazz) and things related to kitty and cat. Also “my little panther”.
And to answer your question I do think they know when we are referring to them. I am always saying “Jazzy boy and Layla girl, Layla girl and Jazzy boy”, I swear they know who is who even though my voice is in the same tone.

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9 srp September 22, 2006 at 7:18 pm

They must know their nicknames: Lady Wilhelmenia Abigail, aka Willow, aka Willowbean; Sir Nicholas Alexander, aka Nicky, aka Nickerdoodle.

Mom’s cat Magnolia Blossom, aka Maggie, aka The Maggot. (When Dad is not particularly happy with her)

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10 aria September 24, 2006 at 10:53 pm

heeeheee we do that too. omg, sasha is majorly cute!

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11 Rosa September 24, 2006 at 11:51 pm

How cute…
Our cats have many nicknames and they understand that they are their’s!

Fridolin: Kiki, König Der Dritte, Fledchen, Nesquik, Keks, The Affe, Wistiti, Herr Kiki…

Maruschka: Bouboule, Panzerfaust, The Ball, Fresssack, Bärli, Blubel, The Bat,…

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12 serial catowner September 25, 2006 at 6:27 am

After some experimentation, I’m convinced they know their names, even when the names are quite similar, like Libby and Liddy. If you own ‘a lot’ of cats, it becomes very convenient to be able to address one in a conversational tone without alarming or attracting the others.

So I never use a nickname, but sometimes I use the full name, for example, Toby is actually named Tobias Toebiter, etc.

I will admit that, in my mind only, one cat is nicknamed ‘Two Ton’.

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13 patricia September 27, 2006 at 6:22 pm

Good question! And yes, our kitties have nicknames. How could they possibly survive with just one name?

Hamish — Bucky, Buckaluck, Chubbs, Boy-o, Numbnuts

Maggie — Mags, MooMoo, Babygirl, Miggie-Maggie

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