Many great brand names have been built around animals, such as Puma, Jaguar, RedBull, FireFox, DuckDuckGo and many others. The animal provides a concrete image on which to build the logo and brand. Many times some aspect off the name hints at characteristics of the brand. Foxes are known to be agile, speedy and possibly sly, applicable to web browsing. The bull is known for strength and stamina, relevant to RedBull products. In 2019 James Iles took a look at how animal names are used. He summarizes the case this way: In this article I look at some tools you can use to determine relative popularity of different animals. You can readily use these tools to do investigations on animal names of interest to you. Common Animal Names Used In Brands Primary Names started a basic list of popular animals in 2018, extended by others since that time. The list contains names such as fox, bull, bear, cat, dog, dove, falcon, panda, lion, tiger, owl and shark. A Look At Sales Data You can use NameBio to readily find sales including animal names by using the Niche category and then Animals as subcategory. The top sales are in fly.com that sold three times, for $2.89, $1.76 and $1.50 million. While a fly is definitely an animal, it also has other meanings. Similarly land.com, impala.com and mara.com are on animal list, although most probably don’t first associate them with animal names. After excluding these types of names, here is a list of animal names with NameBio-recorded sales at $15,000 or more. Animal is used in the biological sense, including birds, insects, marine life, etc. If you want the complete list of all animal sales, here is the NameBio link. gorilla.com, $496,320 (2019) bird.com, $200,000 (2005) snake.com, $135,000 (2019) crab.com, $92,000 (2008) coyote.com, $63,000 (2011) crow.com, $48,300 (2007) dolphin.co, $48,000 (2012) coyotte.org, $45,000 (2014) crocodile.com, $45,000 (2008) bedbug.com, $40,000 (2008) impala.com, $30,000 (2017) tiger.io, $28,888 (2020) badger.com, $27,400 (2011) monkey.co.uk, $22,400 (2012) buck.co, $19,888 (2019) fox.net, $19,000 (2007) possum.com, $18,250 (2012) PolarBear.org, $17,825 (2011) dog.de, $15,935 (2006) BlackBuck.com, $15,000 (2015) dog.net, $15,000 (2005) I was surprised that many of the more desired animal names are not in the sales list. Some are in use and were sold privately. Another reason, though, is that many superb animal names remain in domain investor hands, waiting for the right buyer. Keep in mind that NameBio does not include sales from the brandable marketplaces. I also looked at some extensions other than .com. There were 25 .org sales with a total dollar volume of $90,000, half coming from the dolphin.org sale. A total of 52 .net sales, accounting for $138,500. The .io extension has 33 animal-related sales for $88,600. The tiger.io sale last year accounted for almost one-third of the total. There were 31 .co sales, with $138,800 total. $48,000 of that came from the dolphin.co sale. While there were 40 new extension animal sales, $90,100 total, the highest was $10,000 for ox.club that sold this month. The .ai extension has sold 38 times in animal names for $31,900, although none are over $5000 yet. Popularity Of Animals In Company Names I had a look at how often animal names are used in business and organization names using the OpenCorporates database. I included only names from active listings. Some animals are difficult, for example bear may be used in contexts that are unrelated to the animal name, and searching for ox will be dominated by alternative meanings in longer words. The results below indicate that most animal names find use in hundreds of business names, and that dog, bear, fox and cat are all very popular. Keep in mind that the OpenCorporates directory lists both businesses and organizations, and some of these are nonprofit organizations. OpenCorporates data can be sorted by industry classification. For example, it is possible to determine if a particular animal finds use in names for retail or wholesale trade, finance, or the construction industry. Popularity Of Animals In BrandBucket Listings Another way to gauge popularity is to look at how many names are based on a certain animal in popular brandable marketplaces. You can use the Refine search on BrandBucket to do this by then selecting Contains rather than the default broad search. Keep in mind that even doing that will not eliminate all names unrelated to the animal. For example, FlowLoad includes the word owl, but is not inspired by the word owl. At BrandBucket names including owl, rabbit and fox are particularly popular. It seemed to me that names well known only in certain regions don’t appear often on BrandBucket. For example moose and beaver are both well known animals in Canada, and some other countries, and they are used in 6455 and 8237 business names on OpenCorporates. However, on BrandBucket there are just 7 names with moose and 1 with beaver. Popularity Of Animals At SquadHelp One can’t readily do searches at SquadHelp that exactly includes a term. SquadHelp searches include domain names that are inspired or broadly similar. For example, a full SquadHelp search on duck yields 505 listings, but only 36 actually contained the word duck on the day I searched. Here are the results of my hand-checked searches at SquadHelp on some of the more popular animal names, including only listings with that animal name. Chinese Zodiac Animals I have wondered if the animals of the Chinese zodiac, rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, goat, monkey, rooster, dog and pig, get a boost in use as business names. We are currently in the year of the ox, which will be followed by tiger, rabbit and dragon. All of these are attractive branding names for other reasons, and it will be interesting to see if there are more sales in these names. Animal Brand Meanings I found this article helpful in suggesting animal symbolism in logo design and branding. Here is an example of the sort of information offered: Final Thoughts James Iles wrote an interesting article Animals All The Rage in 2018 that covered both acquisitions and a selection of recent sales. As well as the tools indicated earlier, a simple Google search can give you a feeling for how different animal names are used. Searching trademark databases are another way to gauge interest in a name, as well as to make sure your proposed acquisition is not infringing. One can research trademarks at Trademark247 or at the USPTO, among other places. Not infrequently, two-word domain names combine a color with an animal, such as RedBull. Sometimes this is an obvious pairing, like BlueBird, while other times it is an unnatural, but memorable, combination, such as PinkElephant. I hope users will comment on what animals they think make particularly strong brands. While please don’t post your entire set of animal names, it would be appropriate, if readers desire, to post the one favourite animal domain name you currently hold. Thanks to NameBio, OpenCorporates, BrandBucket and SquadHelp for databases that were used for this research.