Despite their large and imposing look, large breed dogs like the Great Dane, Newfoundlands, Mastiffs and Irish Wolfhounds are really just big softies, good humored and well-behaved pups.
Choosing a name for your large canine companion can be quite a tall order (pun intended!). The name you finally decide on should reflect your dog’s unique traits and characteristics.
Take the Great Dane for instance, he is a giant in appearance but a gentle one at that. They radiate elegance yet have an athletic physique and their temperament is calm and collected. The name chosen should highlight their strength and enormity.
Alternatively, you can forego the physical and hone in on your pup’s behavior instead. Is he/she shy or reserved? Any odd traits? These too should be taken into consideration when choosing a name.
We have a list of categories comprising of over 227 names suitable for big or large breed dogs, drawing inspiration from pop culture, mythology, weather, geography, cartoons and much more!
Let’s check it out!
Top 10 Gentle Giant Dog Names
We'll start off with this year's top 10 large dog names, their origin and meaning.
Knox ~ Scottish meaning "round hill", an imposing name for a large guard dog
Duke ~ English meaning "rank of nobility", fitting for a Dogue De Bordeaux
Diesel ~ German origin, fitting for a Great Pyrenees male dog
Indie ~ short form of India.
Grace ~ English meaning "virtue"
Molly - a cute name for fitting for a female large dog
Ruby ~ Latin meaning "deep red precious stone"
Bella ~ Italian meaning "beautiful" , a lovely dog name
Zoe ~ Greek meaning "life" fitting name for a dog with a lot of energy
Big Male Dog Names
Big Girl Dog names
Giant dog names inspired by NFL
There’s no better inspiration than the world of NFL and great athletes to look for when choosing a fitting name for your new furry pal.
We turn to the most athletic “big men” in history for this section who might be considered “overweight” yet were unbelievably athletic both in terms of agility and mobility for their size.
Here’s our top favorites dog names if you have a large and athletic dog.
- Vince or Wilfork: a New England Patriots defensive tackle athlete, fitting name for a large guard dog
- Jared: as in Jared Lorenzon of the New York Giants in NFL
- Bartolo: refers to Bartolo Colon, fitting for a strong dog
- Prince: as in Prince Fielder, fitting for a Great Dane with a royal attitude
- Leon: refers to Leon White, aka Big Van Vader, a big time professional wrestler
- Shaquille: as in Shaquille O’Neal, NBA basketball legend.
- Heyward: Craig Heyward, a massive NFL player.
- Aaron: Aaron Gibson, the first 400 pound man in NFL.
- Art: Art Donovan, was an NFL defensive tackle from 1950-1961 (his nickname was “Fatso”) weighing close to 300 lbs - a great name for a Bernese Mountain dog
- Pablo: Pablo Sandoval, a skilled defender
- Willie: Willie Roaf had a "freakishly athletic" quality about him thorough his NFL career
Big dog names inspired by weather
Weather terms are by far the most creative when it comes to picking an appropriate name for your big dog.
The choice of names for a large breed dog is extensive.
Here’s a comprehensive list of the most commonly used weather terms that make for great dog names for your big pooch.
- El Niño
- Mist (Misty)
[ Also related: Tough Dog Names ]
Creative big dog names inspired by geography
Geography is a rich topic full of great name ideas for your big pooch. Here are our favorite ones for you to consider.
- Everest: biggest mountain range in Nepal/China, a strong name for a large fluffy dog like an Afghan Hound
- Summit: a summit is the highest point on a mountain. A great name for a big puppy.
- Massif: French originated, refers to a “mass” of peaks or mountains - perfect moniker for your new Mastiff
- K2: highest mountain in Pakistan.
- Denali: highest mountain in North America
- Ararat: highest mountain in Turkey.
- Blackburn: highest mountain in Alaska
- Alaska: largest state in the United States
- Bengal: world’s largest bay
- Brutus: latin for “heavy”, an imposing name for a Shar-Pei
- Sahara: the biggest desert in the world
- Eiffel: the famous tall tower in Paris, France
- Snowden: highest mountain in Wales, England
- Caspian: the Caspian Sea, the world’s largest lake.
- Crater: Crater Lake is the deepest lake in the United States
- Hoba: world’s largest meteorite, for a fast moving dog
- Pacific: the deepest ocean in the world
- Asia: the world’s largest continent
- Amazon: the world’s largest river
- Tokyo: the world’s biggest city
Cartoon inspired names for big dogs
Giving your family dog a name after your favorite cartoon character or your kid’s favorite cartoon characters is a great idea. Many people want their new dog's name to reflect those happy and nostalgic times of the past.
We can all remember Snoopy the lovable Beagle dog or Astro, the Great Dane of the Jetsons - it certainly brings back a lot of good memories for me.
Here’s our top favorite cartoon names for large breed dogs.
- Astro: The Jetson’s Great Dane
- Beast: Princess from Beauty and the Beast
- Flash: as in Flash Gordon the hero of a space opera adventure comic strip
- Marvin: The Martian and Pug-like in appearance
- Spike: the gentle giant character from The Land Before Time
- Scooby: the talking brown Great Dane named Scooby-Doo
- Ranger: a fictional character in the Yogi Bear cartoon series.
- Bolt: the canine action hero in Disney’s Bolt
- Stitch: the mischievous canine friend of a girl named Lilo in Disney’s Lilo & Stich
- Pongo: the lovable Dalmation Pongo in 101 Dalmations
- Ariel: Disney’s mermaid princess
- Merida: the impetuous but courageous Princess of a Scottish King father in Disney’s “Brave”
- Poppy: Another memorable Princess from Trolls cartoon
- Elsa: the ice princess from “Frozen"
- Wilma: fictional cartoon character from the Flintstones
- Dutchess: female protagonist cartoon character of Disney's The Aristocats.
- Moana: another popular Disney Princess
- Penny: regarded as one of Disney's bravest characters
- Dixie: The Fox and the Hound's beautiful “singing stray dog”
- Hulk: A comic character with superhuman strength
TV series inspired big dog names
- Walter: main character lead in Breaking Bad, he was a chemist and a former teacher.
- Heisenberg: Walter’s alter ego as a meth kingpin.
- Jesse: Walter’s former partner in the meth operation
- Hank: Assistant special agent in charge and Walter’s brother in law
- Flynn: Walter’s son
- Skyler: Walter’s wife
- Holly: Walter’s infant daughter
- Gretchen: Walter’s old college chemistry partner
- Kaylee: Mike Ehrmantraut's granddaughter whom he shared a strong bond
- Gil: The lead character in CSI, a brilliant forensic entomologist and CSI Supervisor
- Grissom: Gil’s surname, that would also make for a great male name for a big dog such as a Irish Wolfhound or a Mastiff.
- Sidle: refers to Sara Sidle and forensic investigator who later married Grissom
- Stokes: refers to Nick Stokes, a forensic investigator.
- Rye: location where CSI was shot at, Rye Canyon campus
- Willows: refers to Catherine Willows, the night shift supervisor for the Las Vegas Crime Lab
- Sara: refers to Sara Sidle
- Miami: CSI Miami, another brilliant name for a dog.
- Sofia: worked as a day shift supervisor before being forced to join the night shift as a CSI working for Gil Grissom.
Big dog names inspired by Mythology
Mythology has long had influence on pop and contemporary culture and in that mythology allows for plenty of dog name choices.
Mythology is fascinating and naming your dog after a figure, place or concept derived from myths will provide interesting and unconventional naming options for your doggo.
Remember though, the moniker you choose should reflect the qualities of the large canine companion you're going to share your life with. Here’s a list of here of some of the more intriguing male and female characters of Greek mythology with their meanings.
Mythology male big dog names
- Thor: famous and well-known Norse god
- Brutus: latin for “heavy”
- Thunder: in Baltic mythology, what Perkūnas, god of Thunder reigned over
- Zeus: the king of the Olympian gods, god of sky and thunder, and rules over the Heavens and Earth in Greek Mythology.
- Loki: another well-known Norse god.
- Atlas: In Greek mythology, Atlas was one of the most famous Titans
- Goliath: the most well-known giant in the Bible
- Apollo: In Greek mythology, Apollo is the Olympian god of the sun, healing and prophecy.
- Hercules: in Roman mythology Hercules was a god famous for his strength
- Samson: a Biblical character known for his supernatural strength
- Arthur: the legendary British King Arthur
- Khaos: the Primordial Greek god.
- Zelos: is the god of envy, competition and contest in Greek mythology.
- Argos: Odysseus' faithful dog in Greek mythology.
Mythology female big dog names
- Dalia: In Baltic mythology, she was the Lithuanian goddess of faith
- Fae: from Baltic mythology, a spirit that helps people
- Saga: from Norse mythology, a Norse goddess of poetry, poetic arts, and history
- Var: the Norse goddess of Agreements and Promises
- Freya: meaning “lady” and is the goddess of Love, Death, Beauty and War in Norse mythology
- Athena: In Greek mythology, she was the daughter of Zeus and goddess of love
- Diana: Goddess of the hunt in Roman mythology
- Valkyrie: Female warriors in Norse mythology
- Priscilla: Latin origin meaning "ancient".
- Venus: goddess of love
- Kyleigh: from Celtic mythology meaning “graceful”
- Caitlin: Celtic mythology origin meaning “purity”, great choice of name for a white big dog.
- Moira: Celtic mythology origin meaning “star of the sea”
- Juno: Roman queen of the gods
- Pandora: Greek origin, meaning “all gifted”
- Rhea: the Greek mythological earth mother of all the gods
Now that you’ve gone through our comprehensive list of big dog names, your search for the perfect name will be a lot easier.
Remember that whatever name you give your dog, it will be the one he or she will be using throughout their lifespan. So, it is best to give your canine companion a great name that matches their unique personality.