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T-shirts wear out. Face-paint washes away, but one expression of team loyalty lasts long after the last buzzer of the season sounds. Pet names!
Some offices gear up for the NCAA Tournament with brackets and bets, but at PetFirst Pet Insurance the office looks instead for signs of fan enthusiasm by measuring which schools and mascots inspire the most pet names.
PetFirst analyzed its nationwide database of tens of thousands of insured cats and dogs and found that the Duke Blue Devils may be a number one seed in the tournament, but they don’t lead the pack in pet names. The data shows people are nearly three times as likely to have a pet named after the Nevada Wolf Pack, compared to the Duke Blue Devils. There are 320 dogs and cats named Luna, the most popular of the three Wolf Pack names, as well as several named Alphie and Wolfie. PetFirst covers 127 pets named Duke, the second most popular mascot name.
“Rooting for a team is fun, but when you name your beloved dog or cat after them it’s a true commitment,” said Katie Blakeley, CEO of PetFirst. “Every year during the NCAA tournament, we like to measure basketball fans’ devotion by comparing mascots.”
There were also 117 nods to underdog Gardner-Webb University. Though the population of Boiling Springs, South Carolina hovers around 5,000 people, the national database showed 36 Macs and 81 Lulus, the male and female bulldogs of Gardner-Webb.
The nearly 100 different Blues could have been named in homage to Old Dominion or Utah State’s Big Blue or the Duke Blue Devils.
There were nearly 100 pets credited to Sparky of Arizona State and Liberty University, 53 to Smokey of the University of Tennessee, and 40 to the Tigers of Louisiana State and Auburn. There were 39 dogs and cats named Boomer for Oklahoma, 34 named Willie for Kansas State, 11 named Bucky for Wisconsin, 17 named Otto for Syracuse and 15 named Goldy for Minnesota.
Top dog breeds in the PetFirst database parallel top NCAA teams, among them Bulldogs and Huskies, much like the Yale, Gonzaga and Mississippi State Bulldogs and the Washington Huskies. Cats of various types – Tigers, Bearcats, Panthers, Cougars, even three different teams of Wildcats also make their presence known in the brackets as well as the PetFirst database.
Regardless of how your team finishes in the Big Dance, naming your pet after your favorite teams continues to be a winning choice!
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