Ruby’s Reflections: what’s in a name?

tortoiseshell cat in pink cat bed

Did you know that I’m a trendsetter? I didn’t, either, until one day last week, when I was sitting on Mom’s lap while she was reading a press release about the Top 10 Trendiest Cat and Dog Names. I couldn’t believe my eyes. What? You think I can’t read? Think again! Anyway, here it was, in black and white: the name Ruby made the top 10.

At first I was a little miffed. Don’t get me wrong, I love my name, but I thought I was unique and special and that no other cat in the whole world has such a beautiful name! I know Mom didn’t pick my name because it was trendy. Mom is too cool for that – she doesn’t do things just because they’re “in.” But then I thought it’s actually kind of flattering that so many other people named their cats Ruby. Just because of me! How amazing is that!

Mom said that that’s probably not why these other people named their cats Ruby, but what does she know. But since we were talking about my name, I asked Mom to tell me the story about how she picked it again. I love that story, it’s so special and it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

Mom said that she wanted to name me after a gemstone, because she knew I was going to be precious to her. At first she was going to name me Topaz because of the color of my eyes, but she thought that sounded too masculine. Then she thought about how much she already loved me, even though I hadn’t even come home with her, and that’s when she picked Ruby. She says Ruby is a heart chakra stone. I don’t really know what that means, but it sounds pretty. Mom says it means that it symbolizes love. She says it also has a vivid and intense energy. Yup, that’s me: vivid and intense!

Mom says that Ruby brings light and wisdom into one’s world and teaches a person how precious they are. It also heightens love for life and provides motivation and inspiration to be the person one’s heart desires to be. I like that! I know I bring light and love into Mom’s life every day, and I try to teach her to love life every day!

And if that doesn’t make me special, I don’t know what does.

How did your cats get their names?

39 Comments on Ruby’s Reflections: what’s in a name?

  1. Bernie
    March 26, 2013 at 9:37 am (7 years ago)

    As Ingrid knows I named my newbies (last June) ferals, Liberty, Justice and Freedom, in honor of my son Then a few week later here comes a little Tortie from the shrubbery. At the vet’s they needed a name for their file. Not knowing if I were keeping her I said call her dajudge. Well she stayed and it stuck. Now they hold their own court and if trouble had been brewing, dajudge exonerates them of all wrong doing and off they go for more mischief.

    Reply
  2. Vex
    March 15, 2012 at 7:37 pm (8 years ago)

    We have three special kitties: two 8 year old brothers that are both all black and our 3 year old dilute tortie. And she is the true epitome of “tortitude”.

    Weiland is our big boy who loves everything. He’s named after Scott Weiland, one of my hubby’s favourite musicians. He’s more commonly called “Wee” or “Mr Snugglebum”.

    Then there’s Onyx who is a bit smaller than his brother, but constantly picks on him anyways. One day my hubby called him “O-face”, and the name just stuck. I don’t even remember the last time I called him Onyx.

    Lucy is our hyper little princess. I wanted to name her something Beatles related (I’m a huge fan) and Lucy just seemed to fit her. She loves playing fetch and leaving her toys in the water cups (did I mention they all prefer cups over bowls?). I have too many nicknames for her to list and she comes to all of them. She’s so silly!

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 15, 2012 at 8:07 pm (8 years ago)

      Great names, Vex.

      Reply
  3. Cynthia Southern
    March 15, 2012 at 12:50 am (8 years ago)

    I meant to say Princess was up for adoption at the vet’s office. It has been a LONG day.

    Reply
  4. Cynthia Southern
    March 15, 2012 at 12:48 am (8 years ago)

    I love the name Ruby as it is my birthstone for July. Ingrid, how did Allegra get her name? I can’t imagine she is named after the allergy medication. 🙂

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 15, 2012 at 5:31 am (8 years ago)

      Allegra came with her name. The musical term “allegro” stands for “quickly, cheerful, lively, jaunty,” and I thought that fit her joyful personality perfectly.

      Reply
  5. Cynthia Southern
    March 15, 2012 at 12:46 am (8 years ago)

    Queenie, my 12 year old brown spotted tabby, was adopted from the Denver Dumb Friends League in 2001. The dog of my husband’s Mother had just passed away and her name was Queenie. We were adopting our second cat at the time to be a companion to Puff who passed away in 2005. As we were walking by the cat cages we passed one with the name Queenie on it and the rest is History.

    Princess, my sex year old calico, adopted us on the day Puff went to the Rainbow Bridge. I was in the back to help Puff on her journey at the vet’s office. Princess was known as Sabrina at the time and was up from adoption at the vet’s office. She said hello to my husband and then climbed thru the arm of my coat and cuddled with him. We decided to adopt her. Another customer there suggested she be named Princess because she was so special. Since we already had Queenie Princess was the perfect name for our kitty royalty!

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 15, 2012 at 5:33 am (8 years ago)

      I think Queenie and Princess are perfect names for cats, Cynthia – after all, that’s how cats expect to be treated: like royalty!

      Reply
  6. Ann
    March 14, 2012 at 8:41 pm (8 years ago)

    Parker – Parker is my first cat. My sister works at a very large, very busy hospital in the Chicago suburbs and he was living in the parking lot. She rescued him and named him Parker.

    Scout – My second cat, Scout, is named after a character in my favorite book, To Kill a Mockingbird.

    Erin – Erin is an orange Tabby. She is one of four kittens that were born umder my deck last spring. I fostered the kittens until they were big enough to go to the animal shelter where I am a volunteer. I named them but the people at the shelter did not trust my ability to determine the gender of the kittens, and because Erin is orange, they felt sure that it was a male. I picked Erin because if “she” was actually a “he” I could just change the spelling to Aaron. The other three kittens were adopted immediately and it made me sad to see Erin in the shelter by herself, so a week later she was back home with Parker, Scout, and I.

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 15, 2012 at 5:32 am (8 years ago)

      Great names, Ann – and I love the story of how Erin was determined to live with you.

      Reply
  7. Elizabeth
    March 14, 2012 at 6:52 pm (8 years ago)

    Well, Batman got her name thanks in part to that charming Christian Bale type glare she gives to anyone who upsets her. Her alter ego name, Beatrice Wayne (I call her that when she’s done something naughty!), is just a girly version of Bruce Wayne.

    Batman’s sister Two Face got her name, naturally, from her two colored face. Apart from that, she has two very different sides to her. Her sneaky “I can get away with anything cause daddy will let me” side, and her “I will cut you” type side. Her alter ego name is Harley Dent. It’s the girly version of Harvey Dent, and the Harley bit comes from the Joker’s sidekick Harley Quinn.

    My girls have VERY interesting names haha.

    Reply
  8. Linda
    March 14, 2012 at 5:40 pm (8 years ago)

    This coming Friday is the one year anniversary of when I adopted my two 4-legged kids from the Humane Society of Tampa Bay. They still have the “names they came with”, because I thought they were very appropriate.

    Pepper is my baby girl, a medium-haired tortie wh0se coloring makes me think of a bottle of 5 peppercorn blend! We think she is about 3 years old. She had been adopted from the Humane Society about a year prior, but her family had brought her back to the shelter, supposedly because of allergies. I’d have been buying a lifetime supply of Claritin. I tell her she’s stuck with me as her forever mom now, so she better get used to hugs and kisses, which she is learning to tolerate!

    Dublin is my little rambunctious man. He is an orange and white domestic short-hair with loads of personality. I was visiting the humane society on March 16th, the day before St. Patrick’s Day, and in 2009 I had spent St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland. He was extremely friendly and clamoring for attention. It seemed like fate for me to take him home. He’s about a year and a half.

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:11 pm (8 years ago)

      Sometimes, cats just come to us with the perfect names, Linda. That certainly sounds like it’s the case with Pepper and Dublin.

      Reply
  9. Ingrid
    March 14, 2012 at 1:39 pm (8 years ago)

    Thanks for sharing all these stories about how you named your cats – they’re wonderful!

    Reply
  10. Caren Gittleman
    March 14, 2012 at 1:20 pm (8 years ago)

    this was delightful!!!

    Before I tell you, Ruby the way your Mama named you is just too sweet…but…I agree with you. All of the other kitties are named Ruby because of YOU!

    Ok, here we go:
    Bobo-my first cat. He was found as a stray. I was married to my first husband at the time when we found him. He said that Bobo looked identical to a cat that he had growing up that had been killed by a car, and his name was Bobo. It devastated him when the “original Bobo” (as we called him) passed. I saw photos of him after we had found my Bobo and nearly died. They WERE identical. I told him that Bobo came back to him, reincarnated. Now I feel guilty because when we divorced…Bobo was MINE!!

    Cody-when I adopted Cody his name was “Prince”. I often call him the cat “formerly known as Prince” lol. My husband feels we should have left his name as “Prince” because he is drawn to our regal-looking dining room chairs and loves to sit up high surveying his domain. I had always loved the name “Cody” and I wanted a “C” name to go with mine (why I don’t know!) I decided on “Cody” When I told the woman at the adoption drive I was going to name him “Cody” she shrieked…”nooooooo!! please don’t!! All of the “Cody’s” that I have known and fostered have been CRAZY!!” I also am one to not do what others tell me to do. I went ahead and named him “Cody” and YES….HE IS CRAZZZZZY!!!! But I adore him 🙂

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:10 pm (8 years ago)

      I’m glad you enjoyed the story of how Ruby got her name, Caren – and I love how you named Bobo and Cody!

      Reply
  11. tracey coleman
    March 14, 2012 at 11:13 am (8 years ago)

    Mia- named after the then famous womens soccer player Mia Hamm because of her “skills”. (We lost this amazing beauty in December. I miss my sweet torti everyday. She was simply amazing.)

    Liberty- we took her in for foster care on 9/11/01 and she never left. Her name speaks of the day.

    Lola- our newest girl. A long haired black beauty. My great-grandmother’s name was Lola and she was classy, fancy and really funny, just like our new cat. (Is it strange to name a cat after a great-grandmother?)

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:10 pm (8 years ago)

      I’m sorry about your Mia, Tracey, and I’m glad you now have Liberty and Lola in your life.

      Reply
  12. Rebecca
    March 14, 2012 at 11:05 am (8 years ago)

    p.s. My boyfriend always calls Heidi “Fuzzbutt.” For obvious reasons! We also call her “Fastpaw,” also for obvious reasons.

    Reply
  13. Rebecca
    March 14, 2012 at 11:01 am (8 years ago)

    My cat Heidi got her name because when we brought her home from the shelter, we discovered that she would hide when we left the house and only come out when we came home. Then we noticed that she would run and hide when other people so much as walked past the front door. We didn’t even know she was shy when we adopted her, since she loved us so much from the moment we met her. They were calling her Abigail at the shelter and we weren’t sure what name we wanted for her… I made a joke about her hiding and said, “She’s really hide-y, we could call her Heidi.” Then I tried it out and called her with that name, and she was so ready for us to call her something, anything, that she came running to me right away, going, “Okay sure, Heidi, that’s my name now? Okay!! Here I come!” She was just super excited to be our cat! So the name, which started out as just a silly joke, stuck.

    Shortly after we brought home Heidi we adopted a male cat we named Genghis for his fearlessness – the day I saw that tiny kitten walking upstairs to introduce himself to the dog that lived up there, I knew he was a conqueror at heart.

    We later had Mitsu, so named for her three black spots on a white background (it means three when counting in Japanese), and Cassius, named after Cassius Clay because he had quite a swing. Cassius was a feral cat we tamed, and he had big, huge paws with big, huge claws in them. At one stage my boyfriend was holding out spoonfuls of wet food for him… Cassius ate from the spoon once or twice and then discovered that if he just smacked the spoon really hard, he could eat the food from the floor like he wanted to. He later decided that he wanted to be domesticated, and like flipping a switch he suddenly became tame. He was a friendly, lazy, floppy sweetheart of a cat but he retained the name… I put a tag on his collar that said, under his name, “I’m retired.”

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:09 pm (8 years ago)

      All of the stories behind your cats’ names are wonderful, Rebecca, but I think Heidi’s is my favorite.

      Reply
  14. Melanie
    March 14, 2012 at 10:48 am (8 years ago)

    I have four wonderful furbabies and a couple names have a story.

    TC – my first baby came to me when he was tiny enough to fit in the palm of my hand. I kept trying to think of a name but couldn’t come up with one. I just kept telling him he was Too Cute – so TC stuck (because Too Cute is just too silly and long).

    Sir Ozwald Furwalken – my birthday present from my son. I wanted to give him a nerdy name and Ozwald kept popping in my head – spelling it with a “z” so I could call him Ozzy for short. His hind legs have white socks – my dad said “these boots were made for walking…” and he is fur walking… 🙂 The Sir was added because it sounds right. As for calling him Ozzy – no can do, he prefers Ozwald.

    George is my sweet stray and all I could think of is “I’m gonna love him and hug him and squeeze him and call him George.”

    Ricki Bobbi – my beautiful little girl was rescued from the local shelter – my son named her after Will Farrell’s character in Talladega Nights. She prefers to be called Baby Girl. 🙂

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:08 pm (8 years ago)

      Sir Ozwald Furwalken – now that’s a big name for a kitty. Love it!

      Reply
  15. Vicky
    March 14, 2012 at 10:34 am (8 years ago)

    Velcro – as a 5 or 6 week old kitten she came out and latched on to my hand and clung there

    Toots – is what my grandma called me, thought it was the perfect name for a soft little kitten, pronounced with the long o sound like “Hiya Toots” or tootsie roll. Not pronounced toots like the sound a horn makes which is what the Vet calls her, much to her annoyance.

    Inky – who started out life as Waffles but was not fond of the name, oh the nasty looks I got when I called her Waffles. So we went through the process of finding her a new name. She is all black so I started with Cinder, Shadow, Coal, Mocha and when I tried Inky, she jumped in my lap and purred, so Inky it was.

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:08 pm (8 years ago)

      I love all three names, and I love the story of how Inky responded to her name, Vicky!

      Reply
  16. NewGrayMare
    March 14, 2012 at 9:48 am (8 years ago)

    Mist Luin (aka, Misty) came to me as a tiny, sick, blue eyed kitten. She followed me out to my car on my lunch break at work and jumped in before I could get the door closed! I marveled at her beautiful blue eyes and petted her and tried to set her outside again. But, that little stinker, she got in the car again! She’s a snowshoe Siamese and those little white paws combined with the icy blue eyes just melted my heart. I ended up taking her home and hubby suggested Mist Luin as her name. It’s an elvish name that translates as “Lost Blue.” She was a little lost kitten, but now she’s a beautiful cat with a loving home.

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:07 pm (8 years ago)

      Sounds like Mist Luin was determined to be with you!

      Reply
  17. Rita Dean
    March 14, 2012 at 9:21 am (8 years ago)

    Carrot Cate (Cate for everyday) is creamy white with flame point ears and tail. Someone threw her out in a cardboard box in a February Ohio snowstorm. Two days of searching later, the cat rescue folks finally spotted her ears amidst all the deep snow and they looked like a couple of carrots sticking up, so when she was listed on Petfinder, she was called Princess Snow Carrot with this story. She was so new they had not had time to get her picture or to assess her personality. But the story stole my heart and I went to see her and adopted her. Why someone would do that, I cannot imagine. She entertains herself playing batting the ball inside the blue donut toy, she even brought another ball to me and I learned that she plays fetch better than any old dog! She is the light of my life. Princess Snow Carrot is now Carrot Cate. I tell her everyday that she’s my favorite, and it’s true.

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:06 pm (8 years ago)

      What a great name and story, Rita!

      Reply
  18. Bernadette
    March 14, 2012 at 7:28 am (8 years ago)

    Ruby, does your mom know a song with these lyrics:

    They say, Ruby you’re like a song
    You just don’t know right from wrong
    And in your eyes I see heartaches for me
    Right from the start, who stole my heart?
    Ruby, it’s you

    She might know it was sung by a cat named Ray Charles, among others (just to be legal, here’s the rest of the info http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/r/ray_charles/ruby.html).

    My famous tortie Kelly came with her name and no one knows where she got it! All the rest, well, the stories for each one go on and on…

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:05 pm (8 years ago)

      I did not know this song, Bernadette. Ruby definitely stole my heart right from the start!

      Reply
  19. Stacie
    March 14, 2012 at 6:28 am (8 years ago)

    Stella -just because I thought it would be a little different for a cat’s name.
    Oreo – because she looks like an Oreo cookie black head white body ad a black back side

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:05 pm (8 years ago)

      Stella is a cute name, and Oreo’s name sounds perfect for her, Stacie!

      Reply
  20. Marg
    March 14, 2012 at 7:23 am (8 years ago)

    Ruby, that is a wonderful story. We like that. We can’t repeat our names because they are all a little on the weird side. Hope all of you have a great day.

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:05 pm (8 years ago)

      Weird is good, Marg!

      Reply
  21. Ed Trumbo
    March 14, 2012 at 6:18 am (8 years ago)

    Ah, cat names. My wife and I have a big clowder, so bear with me.

    Basia = named for one of my favorite singers;
    Dubya = adopted on election night of 2000;
    Jewel = retained her shelter name;
    Tiger = named for her mackeral tabby stripes;
    Cosmo = retained his shelter name;
    Alison = a dual-purpose name, partly for another favorite singer and partly after a shelter cat I almost adopted;
    Stewie = named (prophetically) for the evil genius baby on “Family Guy”;
    Beethoven = retained his shelter name;
    Ninja = name suggested by a shelter volunteer;
    Charlie = named to reflect his casual and gentle nature;
    Neko = the Japanese word for ‘cat’; 😉
    Turbo = an old family nickname;
    Snickers = retained her name from her previous caretakers;
    Nikita = named for a passing resemblance to Neko.

    Whew! 😀

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:04 pm (8 years ago)

      Wonderful names, Ed! Sometimes, the name they come with just fits perfectly.

      Reply
  22. Spunky Doodle and Manny
    March 14, 2012 at 5:46 am (8 years ago)

    I think my name is self-explanatory–I’m Spunky! My nickname is the Spunkster because I have a knack for getting into some fun adventures. My mom gave me that name but my dad called me Doodle so they combined both names into one: thus I am Spunky Doodle.

    Believe it or not, my name used to be FooFee. My mom and dad wanted to give me a manly name when I came to live with them so they re-named me Manny! I am so glad!

    Reply
    • Ingrid
      March 14, 2012 at 6:03 pm (8 years ago)

      I sure am glad that you didn’t have to go through life with a name like FooFee, Manny!

      Reply

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