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A lot of people write to us asking for American Indian names for their dogs, cats, horses, boats, houses, role-playing characters,
and so forth. After turning down so many requests, we have decided it might make a nice fundraiser. So if you donate $10 to our
non-profit organization (which will then be used to preserve and promote
endangered Indian languages), our volunteers will now suggest
three possible Native American names from a language of your choice, along with the meaning and pronunciation of each name.
Languages we can currently use for translations include Abenaki, Algonquin, Apache, Athabaskan, Bella Coola, Blackfoot, Caddo, Cherokee, Cheyenne,
Chipewyan, Chippewa, Choctaw, Comanche, Cree, Creek, Crow, Dakota Sioux, Dene, Delaware, Haida, Hopi, Inuktitut, Kiowa, Lakota, Lenape,
Maliseet-Passamaquoddy, Mesquakie, Mohawk, Mojave, Munsee, Muskogee, Navajo, Nez Perce, Nuxalk, Ojibway, Oneida, Osage, Pima, Potawatomi,
Salish, Sauk, Seneca, Shawnee, Shoshone, Tohono O'odham, Tlingit, and Yaqui. We may also be able to provide Indian names from other languages;
please inquire first if you have a different language in mind.
Please note that suggesting Native American animal names is only a fun way to raise money for a good cause. We will not give you or anyone else a "spirit name," nor will we bless you, the name, or your dog. These requests are offensive to Orrin; please respect his beliefs and do not misrepresent him or our role in suggesting these names. The names we suggest are no different, spiritually speaking, than American Indian names you found in a naming book or looked up in a language dictionary. If you are looking for an American Indian name with spiritual significance for yourself or for a child's naming ceremony, please talk to an elder in your community. The giving and receiving of medicine names is a serious religious tradition and really can't be done over the Internet any more than a baptism could. If you are looking for secular Native American names for a new baby, then see our page on American Indian baby names for more information and suggestions.
On the other hand, if you're looking for a Native American name for your pet, boat, small business, fictional character, house, or some other creative but non-religious purpose, then please fill out the form below. After you send it you will be prompted to make a $10 donation. If you prefer, you can also write down this information and send it along with cash or a check (made out to Native Languages of the Americas) to our postal address:
Native Languages of the Americas
8400 Normandale Lake Boulevard, Suite 920
Minneapolis MN 55437
We will email you three possible American Indian names that match your criteria, along with their meaning, language, and pronunciation, and you can pick the name that appeals to you the most. It normally takes us at least a week to suggest Indian names and meanings, since we need to get in touch with speakers of a few different languages to make the best name suggestions. Please realize that some native Indian names may be difficult for you to pronounce, since tribal languages are so different from English. We can try to give you short animal names to make it easiest for you, but if you don't like or can't pronounce the names we suggest, you may have to adapt one of these words into a more pronounceable dog name and simply say it was inspired by a Native American word. That is how half the rivers in America got named, after all.
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