12 Bang On Irish Cat Names

You’ve made the big decision to get a cat – or you have decided to expand your kitty family. You’ve chosen the breed or decided on a moggy – and now comes the hardest decision of them all – what will you call your new feline? There are Disney cat names, Greek cat names, Egyptian Cat Names – how about some Irish Cat Names?

Irish cat names are a terrific option – cats have long been revered in Ireland and are seen by many Irish people as magical. In Ireland, cats are at the heights of their magical powers – good and bad – at Halloween.

And in Ireland many see a black cat crossing their path as good news rather than bad news.

The good news is that I have done some of the hard work for you and have reduced the number of potential Irish cat names down based on some sound criteria about what can make for a good cat name.

Plus I’ll take you through some things to think about to help you decide which of those names is the best one for your new kitty.

cat in a green hat and a butterfly tie

Irish Cat Names – Will my cat even notice?

Sure humans get excited about cat names – but does our kitty even know its own name let alone care? Research shows that domesticated cats do know and recognise their names.

The research was appropriately carried out by the University of Tokyo (home to many cat cafes which were actually used in this study) and was published in the well-reputed journal Nature.

It had been well known that domesticated cats were more vocal than wild cats and that a domesticated cat’s behaviour is influenced by their owners’ mood and facial expressions.

But considering that humans began domesticating cats about 9,500 years ago it is about time a more in-depth study was done about whether our cats even knew their own names.

cat in a field with a wooden gate irish cat names

The study worked with 78 different cats across single and multi cat homes as well as in cat cafes. The study found that most cats are able to distinguish their names from similar sounding words and from other cat names.

The evidence of this was that the cats perked up when they heard their names and responded by moving their heads, meowing and wiggling their ears.

This result was witnessed when both their owners and strangers used their names. And the results were similar in multi-cat households where cats didn’t react to the names of other cats in their homes but did when their name was used.

Naming a cat gives it an individual identity and helps to build a relationship between cat and owner. And you can help your cat to learn its own name by avoiding using too many nicknames, particularly when they are younger.

tabby cat with green eyes with greenery behind

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Key Things to Think About when Naming your Cat

1. Your Cat’s Appearance

The color of your cat or its markings can help you make a choice. Irish cat names are fantastic for matching with the color of your cat. Kieran and Darcy both mean dark so suit black cats. Kira is black for girls and Ciara is a female name meaning dark-haired.

If your cat is a lighter colour then consider Finley which means fair or Finn which is small blond soldier.

If you have a ginger cat Rory means Red King or for a shiny tabby try Orla which means Golden Princess.

black traditional bombay cat on nuts background
Bombay Cat

Look at your kitty’s shape as well – is he sleek or solid? Pointy ears or flat back ears? Fluffy or sleek? Think about the concept of Onomatopoeia. This is when a word looks like what it describes.

2. The Personality of your Cat

A great cat name may reflect your cat’s personality. This can be difficult with a new cat as of course you haven’t gotten to know them yet and your cat may be very young so its personality is still developing. Take a few days to observe your new kitty and see what it is like.

Aidan means little fire so is perfect for an active and curious cat.

3. Your Cat’s Breed

If your cat is a Siberian or a Maine Coon and very fluffy it may well suit a name like Conan which means little wolf.

black persian cat
Persian Cat

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4. Keep the name Short

You will use your cat’s name an awful lot – so the fewer the syllables the better. Also, this will be easier for your cat to absorb and remember. Plus it is likely that you will be introducing your cat to friends, family, vets and others so a shorter name is easier for everyone to understand and remember.

5. Don’t choose a name that is bigger than your cat

In Ireland it doesn’t get much bigger than Bono! I feel this could be a little unfair for your kitty. Same with The Edge.

6. The name should have longevity

It may seem hilarious to give your cat a lengthy name when you first get it but you may well tire of calling this name out and sharing it with others.

several cats in a window sill of a pink hat with a red frame

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Blarney could seem like a hilarious name when you first get your cat but you may well tire of using it and explaining to others that whilst you love your kitty you have given him a name suggesting that he is a blatant liar.

7. Be nice

Mosach is Gaelic for hairy but is that really right for a beautiful kitty? Nessa is Gaelic for NOT gentle. Cillian means bitter. I think you see what I mean.

8. Make sure it fits with other cats in your household

The key thing here is to avoid choosing a cat name that sounds too much like the name of another cat in your household as this may lead to confusion eg Sven and Ben.

What if I choose the wrong name?

I know I let you know that your cat does learn its name but if you choose to change your cat’s name after a few weeks it shouldn’t be too much of an issue.

cat on a bus in ireland

⇒ About to become a fur parent? Check out my Complete Guide to How to Look After a Kitten.

There is no evidence one way or the other as to what happens when a new owner changes the name of an older cat eg if you were to get a rescue kitty who was already several years old. I would suggest trying your name of choice and giving it a few months to stick and then making a decision from there.

How did some famous cats get their names?

The Grumpy Cat only became The Grumpy Cat after an image of her frown went bananas on social media. Her real name was Tartar Sauce.

Garfield was based on cats that creator Jim Davis grew up around. The actual name and personality came from Jim Davis’ grandfather, James A Garfield Davis. Davis described his grandfather as “a large, cantankerous man”.

Choupette Lagerfeld was given to Karl Lagerfeld by French model Baptiste Giabiconi when the kitten was 10 weeks old. Choupette is a common nickname in French for cute girls.

12 Best Irish Cat Names

Pangur

The most famous cat name in Ireland is Pangur. Pangur is mentioned in a poem which was written by a monk in the 9th century called Pangur Ban. And the Gaelic word for cat is actually “cot” which of course causes considerable kitty confusion!

Blue eyed snow marbled bengal cat in green top hat Irish Cat nam

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2. Wicklow

The famous beautiful mountains near Dublin.

3. Cabbage

Did you know that little cabbage is a term of endearment in French? (Mon petit chou).

4. Conan

Pefect for the furriest cats as it means little wolf.

5. Kirby

A rather odd one – it means from a church farm – but super cute

ginger cat in green irish hat

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6. Sheena

God is gracious – perfect for a serene female kitty

7. Conor

Lover of hounds. Well suited to a kitty who shares its home with dogs

8. Aidan

Little fire – perfect for cats with attitude

9. Kira

Perfect for a female black cat

black siberian cat in tree

⇒ For all things fun with your kitty check out my guides to clothing for cats, the best toys for cats, great gifts for cats and my annual cat planner for kitty photo opportunities across the year.

10. Darcy

For a male black cat

11. Orla

Golden Princess – perfect for a pretty female tabby

12. Paddy

Patrick shortened – a name that always sounds like someone who loves to drink a beer and put on a bet. Perfect for a fun loving male cat.

architectural design architecture brick wall bricks
Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com

⇒ For everything you need to know about taking care of your finicky feline check out my guide to How to Groom a Cat, Ultimate Persian Cat Grooming Guide, the Best Cat Brush, Caring for Cats guide and my quick cat check up guide.

Irish Cat Names from Places in Ireland

Galway
Dublin
Cork
Blarney
Bray
Ennis
Sligo
Wicklow

Irish Cat Names from Irish Food and Drinks

Guinness
Jameson
Bailey or Baileys
Cabbage
Tayto – Irish potato chip
Colcannon – mashed potato with kale or cabbage
Coddle – layers of sausages and bacon with slices of potato and onions

Irish Cat Names from Gaellic Words

Pusheen – a term of endearment for a cat
Craic – having a great time
Dillon – flash of lightening
Quinn – Wisdom

assorted liquor bottles
Photo by Lucian Petronel Potlog on Pexels.com

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Male Irish Names

Conan – little wolf
Kieran – little dark one
Finley – fair hero
Kirby – from the church farm
Ronan – little seal
Liam – strong warrior
Cormac – son
Darcy – dark
Finn – small blond soldier
Quinn – wise
Rory – red king
Aidan – little fire
Conor – lover of hounds
Fergal – brave
Murphy – from a great warrior
Dempsey – pride
Dugan – dark or black

Female Irish Names

Kira – black
Sheena – god is gracious
Orla – golden princess
Lia – bearer of good news
Breana – strong and virtuous
Sybil – fortune teller
Ciara – dark-haired
Iona – purple jewel

Classic Irish Words and names

Leprechaun
Patrick
Paddy
Shamrock
Clover
Molly
Bono

wood dawn holiday caffeine
Photo by Jill Wellington on Pexels.com

Please Note: This Irish cat names post contains affiliate links. That means if you click through on most of the links and end up making a purchase I will receive a small commission. This will not affect the price that you pay. I wanted to make sure that you were aware of this.

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