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Top 10 pet dog names in Spain include Luna for girls and Toby for boys
thinkSPAIN , Wednesday, May 29, 2013

LUNA, Linda, Laika, Rocky and Toby are among the most popular names for pet dogs in Spain.

And the most common 'breed' is a mongrel, says the Spanish Pet Identification Network (REIAC).

A total of nine million dogs are registered in Spain, and in Valencia, Madrid, Catalunya and the Canary Islands, around a third are a mixture of various breeds.

The region with the most pet dogs is Andalucía, with 1.86 million, of which 27 per cent are mongrels.

Outside the top 10 most popular dog names, those of fictitious canines are among the most prolific and include Frodo, Goofy and Rex, but Luna claims the number one spot as Spain's favourite name for its pet pooches – albeit mostly for girls.

Second place is Laika, in tribute to the Russian dog sent up into space in 1957, who became the first living being to orbit the Earth, although she only survived a few hours.

The rest of the top 10 names are Linda – which means 'beautiful' or 'lovely' in Spanish; Rocky; Toby; Chispa – meaning 'spark'; Kira; Lola; Canela – meaning 'cinnamon' – and Chiqui.

Popular pet dog names vary by region, with Andalucía in the south seeing plenty of four-legged friends named Tina, Paloma, Rubia and Careta, and in the Canary Islands, Niã.

A common dog name in Asturias is Zar – Spanish for 'Tsar' – and Cuqui in Madrid and Castilla-La Mancha.

One of Valencia's favourite names is Lluna, which is the regional language variation of Luna.

With the widespread use of the co-official language euskera, Navarra and the Basque Country see regular occurrences of names such as Beltza, Zuri, Bizkor, Argi and Neska, and in fact the top two names in the Basque Country are Txiki and Lagun.

In all 17 federal regions in Spain, it is obligatory for dog-owners to have their pets microchipped and entered on a central register.

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