Finding The Name

4 minutes long – click here to hear how we went about finding the name for our new puppy.

Bruce and I have raised four puppies, and we just picked up our fifth pup three days ago in Boise, Idaho.


As usual we search to pick just the right name for the new dog. Each time we go through a similar process.  List one. List two. And the impromptu names arriving after we have picked the puppy up.


List One.



Discount Carbon and CO2.  Global warming is such a heavy and frequently discussed subject in this house, I can’t bear to name a new dog anything to do with “climate change,” otherwise I’d never get a break from the toiling bell of doom.  And Rover reminds me of the 1950s-chapter book featuring Dick and Jane and the little black and white spotted mutt that follows them home. The name Taboo spins Edgar Alan Poe’s Fall of the House of Usher. A brother, a sister. Taboo may sound and feel great to say.  “Taboo—oo–oo,” but wow there’s a name with a load of baggage.  I can’t escape being reminded of the forbidden. The apple and more.


List 1 involves practicing.  I’ll hear Bruce call “here Banjo” or “Carbon come!” He’ll hear me yell “El-Ziiiiiick!”  “Red Rover, Red Rover, get your butt here right over!” Then a peal of laughter—as we keep searching for a good fit.


Then, while we drive to pick up our new puppy, we start list two in the car.


List Two.



I use my cellphone to find the origin of the names Rounder, Toady, and Jambo?


Rounder is a game, a rotund person, and a man that makes the circuit – either from cocktail lounge to bar room, or prison to prison. And Toady is fun to say, but Toady is basically a flatterer, someone who hopes to gain favor. Nobody wants a dog that runs around with his tail between his legs all the time. And Jambo, Bruce’s international suggestion, well, it has many meanings depending on the country the name is used in. It could mean “sparkle in your eye,” “heel-grabber,” a greeting, follow me, …. Just too many possibilities, and when we pulled in at a rest stop, Bruce got out of my truck and called to the garbage can, “Jambo come here.”


By the time we pull up in front of the kennel, we still have no name.


A few hours later, I have the puppy on my lap, and Bruce is driving to a reservoir outside Baker City, Oregon where we will spend a few days camping and getting to know our newest friend.


The last two names. Not on either list. Lupine, a spiky blue wildflower is one of our favorites and several species of lupine grow on our farm.  But, our friends text: “Lupine is a girl’s name, and ah gawd Lupine is a hippie name.”


Well, Bruce says, “what about Chinook, Chinook Winds?” A Chinook wind means the ducks are gonna fly, and to run like the Chinook wind means blowing warm and sliding free over land and lake. We practice, “Chinook? Chinook,” and we chose Chinook! Finally, we have found his name.


Cedarwoods Chinook Winds, pudelpointer, gun dog, born March 21st, 2019. He became part of our family when he turned seven weeks old.

Chinook portrait second day

12 thoughts on “Finding The Name

    1. Ha Ha! Bruce– Skookum’s son is named Diesel, and Diesel is a very popular hunting dog name. Maybe next time. We probably have a few more pups left in us. Toro is cool too! Thanks. I hope you and Ruth are well. 🙂

  1. I certainly like Chinook the best of all of the suggestions on both lists. Can’t wait to hear how it goes when he meets the other household pets! I leave tomorrow (Wed.) to go to Tucson, AZ and then drive with a long time friend to OR where she spends the summer. We have made the trip several times before and always have a good time with laughs and sharing of life experiences. I will be in The Dalles for a couple of days before flying back to Minnesota. I just mention this so you don’t do a double take in the event that you think you see me around town. It may well be me. Paula

    1. Thank you Paula. Enjoy your road trip with your friend. A precious time indeed. I just made a long trip to and from California with a dear friend. Great memories.

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