Korean Dog Names with Meaning

Written by Arrian Lim

Co-founded Pawdel to be at the forefront of this crazy emerging trend of pet humanization by creating wearable pieces of love for our pet companion.


안녕 | Annyeong! 🇰🇷
We presented earlier how Japanese-inspired dog names have taken a stride in the country. Interestingly, Japan’s east Asian neighbor comes second in Filipinos’ affinity to name their dogs and cats with names of foreign origin.
These are our top 12 Korean-inspired pet names of the month.

1. Kimchi

It is a traditional Korean side dish of salted and fermented vegetables, such as napa cabbage and Korean radish. A wide selection of seasonings is used, including gochugaru (Korean chili powder), spring onions, garlic, ginger, and jeotgal (salted seafood). Kimchi is also used in a variety of soups and stews. As a staple food in Korean cuisine that is palatable even to non-Koreans, it is inevitable that a PawParent would name a pet their favorite side dish.

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2. Jin

A well-loved Korean name for boys meaning “precious” or “truth.”.

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3. Jeju

An island that is one of the chief tourist spots in South Korea. It became subject to the Goryeo Dynasty, and its name was eventually changed to its present name Jeju; meaning “a big province across the sea.” Its name is also meant to be sacred wine or drink-offering.

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4. Soju

It is a distilled spirit from Korea that’s traditionally made from rice. It may be made from sweet potato, barley, tapioca, wheat, or any combination of the ingredients. The clear alcoholic beverage is sometimes called Korean vodka because of its neutral flavor. Soju means “burnt liquor”, with the first syllable “so” referring to the heat of distillation, and the second syllable “ju” referring to “alcoholic drink”. Outside of Korea, it can be found in select convenience stores owing to its popularity among non-Korean alcohol consumers. It is therefore not surprising that we see a lot of dogs and cats named after this alcoholic drink.

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5. Mijoo

Aptly spelled Mi-joo, its popularity as a pet name can largely be attributed to the K-Pop girl group Lovelyz. It achieved a breakthrough with international audiences from 2016 to 2019 before it disbanded in 2021.

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6. Haru

Although more popularly associated with Japan, in Japanese it translates to ‘the season of spring’ or ‘born in the season of spring’. In Korean, this name means ‘day’.

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7. Jihoo

It is alternately spelled Jihu. Although it’s unisex, its predominantly masculine nature is more popular with larger breeds of dogs. The name means wisdom or intellect.

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8. Won

It is a single-syllable Korean given name, and an element in many two-syllable Korean given names. Such two-syllable names with “won” are Joo-won, Kyung-won, and Won-shik.

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9. Malli

This is a Korean name that is rare and unique. Unlike many of the common and popular Korean names in this list, the name is trending in Korean baby births last year. It’s a feminine name meaning “jasmine”.

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10. Misu

This is a beverage made from Korean traditional grain powder, misu-garu (misutgaru; “misu powder”) which is a combination of 7–10 different grains.

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11. Moon

Unlike many names in this list, Moon is a Korean family name. The 2000 South Korean census found a total of 426,927 people and 132,881 households with this family name.

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12. Keopi

a Japanese word for ‘small’ or ‘little’ and implies cuteness

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These Korean-inspired names are another set in our series of Dog and Cat names of the month. Personally, I would pick the name Keopi – its origin would keep another person guessing and is a nice conversation starter in a pet park.

Moon and Jihoo round up my top 3 for the same reasons it’s unique and has more story to them.

How about you? Which among these 12 Korean pet names would you pick for your dog or cat? We would love to know!

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