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RISMEDIA, January 5, 2011—Call it the “Twilight Effect.” In 2010, Bella retained its position as the most popular dog name for the second year in a row, and surpassed Chloe to assume the second most popular name for cats. Veterinary Pet Insurance Co. (VPI), one of the nation’s oldest and largest providers of pet health insurance, sorted its database of more than 485,000 insured pets to determine last year’s most popular pet names. In addition to the top 10 dog and cat names, VPI for the first time has included the top 10 exotic pet names in its annual pet names analysis. Although Charlie may have ranked lower for dogs (No. 9) and cats (No. 10) last year, the name takes the top spot for birds, lizards, gerbils, rabbits and other assorted exotic pets.

Top 10 dog names of 2010
1. Bella
2. Bailey
3. Max
4. Lucy
5. Molly
6. Buddy
7. Maggie
8. Daisy
9. Charlie
10. Sophie

Top 10 cat names of 2010
1. Max
2. Bella
3. Chloe
4. Oliver
5. Lucy
6. Smokey
7. Shadow
8. Tiger
9. Tigger
10. Charlie

Top 10 exotic pet names of 2010
1. Charlie
2. Baby
3. Sunny
4. Jack
5. Kiwi
6. Bandit
7. Bella
8. Max
9. Sammy
10. Gizmo

Of the nearly half a million pets insured by VPI, only 13 were named Fido, reflecting the current trend of owners giving their pets human names. Nearly every dog name on VPI’s top ten pet names list doubles as a popular human name, and several of the more traditional feline names—Tiger and Tigger—decreased in popularity between 2009 and 2010.

“We know that nearly half of pet owners today view their pets as a part of their family,” said Curtis Steinhoff, director of Corporate Communications at VPI. “Given that pets are considered family members, it makes sense that pet owners are selecting human-oriented names like Max or Charlie.”

For more information, visit www.petinsurance.com.

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