11 June 2018

Choosing a name

You took a dog in off the streets and decided to take care of it for a few days. You figure the usual commands you use for the other dog in the family should work for the new one as well. Ok, good. But then you need to use a name before the command, so that the dogs know who is supposed to follow it. What do you name a "temporary pet"?

I called her Girl a lot at first, as well as Negruta (Romanian for Blackie) because she reminded me of another black dog called Negruta. The people at the vet clinic called her Blackie. Then we realised we would be keeping her for longer, so we sat down to think about the name properly.

Of course, Negruta and Blackie are all valid regular names for a female black dog, right? Nope, my husband doesn't do regular pet names. His two cats (now his mother's cats) are called DJ (short for Destroyer of toys, but in Romanian) because he always broke his toys and Pitica (the English equivalent would be Tiny one) because he rescued her as a kitten and she was very small and frightened. Our first dog is called Aschiuta (which means Little splinter) because she chewed on wooden table legs until splinters came off. So the new dog also needed a special name.

He must have been brewing his idea for a while, because he immediately said we should call her Nightmare. Why Nightmare? Because the first few nights that she was with us we were so worried about her that we lost a lot of sleep. So she was our little nightmare.

I was reluctant at first, because I was still biased on Negruta, but he convinced me. Now I am very comfortable going around calling her Nightmare and she also seems to have learned it is her name. Of course, people were surprised when they found out about the name (one of our neighbours said to me "Sure, your husband is a rocker, what else do you expect?") - especially the ones who knew how gentle she was - but our friends got used to it as well.

I must say, even if she looks a bit scary, she is the loveliest nightmare we have ever had!

She is a real sweetheart, but people who meet her for the first time are prone to believe she has a nightmarish temper!