Now that you’ve brought your new pet home, it’s time to choose a name that fits them perfectly. Don’t feel you need to rush into a choice. Take a few days with your new pet and get to know them. You may decide to name them for a strong personality or physical trait. Or you may draw inspiration from historical or modern characters. Whether you choose to stick with one of the classics or embrace your creativity, there are a few points to keep in mind.

Make it short and easy to say: One or two syllables is best. Or if you really love the name Master Professor Finneus T. Higginbotham, maybe call them Professor for short.

Keep it clean: It may seem funny to name your pet something inappropriate, but remember that you’ll the one having to call out their name in public. Don’t ever use profanity or something that you wouldn’t want your grandmother to hear you say.

Avoid names that sound like “no”: No is the most common word we use to express anger or displeasure with our pets’ behavior. If you name them Bono or No-No, they’re going to think they’re always in trouble when you call them.

Make a good impression: Don’t choose names like Danger, Psycho or Bad Dog. Non-pet lovers are quick to judge, especially large breeds, so don’t add to it by implying your pet is vicious, crazy or out of control.