The Ultimate Guide to Pet Names


It’s not easy, but it’s necessary.

Pet names, or terms of endearment, seem to be an essential part of a relationship between a couple. While they may seem annoying, it’s almost as if pet names provide an extra layer of security in a relationship. While they may seem uncomfortable, you’ve gotta use them. And if you’ve gotta use them, you might as well use them well. It’s taken me 4 and a half years, but I think I’ve gotten pretty good at it. Here are some tips and helpful advice for those who are amateurs in the field of terms of endearment.

It’s got to SEEM natural.

Pet names are never natural, even if you’ve been married for many years, but don’t tell your significant other that. Vary both the words and the pitch of your voice in order to deliver the winning lines effectively. You want to sound like you’re talking to your Baby like a baby.

…but not too much like a baby. That’d just be condescending.

The more unnatural sounding the phrase, the better.

In seemingly direct contrast to my last point, for some reason or another couples like to call each other really awkward things. It helps create a unique identity for the relationship. You almost MUST refer to food on a constant basis, from Cutie-Pie to Baby-Cakes.

Oh, and seriously don’t take too long to mentally envision the idea of a “baby-cake.”

I’ve also heard couples call each other things that refer to fat or things that make you that way. Things like “Chunky Monkey” and “Cupcake.”

Select your words with precision.

I always follow this simple rule of thumb. Never use a pet name that deviates two syllables or more from your previous word. For example, you never want follow the word “you” with “Cuddly-Wubbly.” Short words produce short pet names, and long words set up for effective long names.


This one is tough. When using pet names in texts or letters, do you capitalize the first letter or not? After all, you are substituting their name for this piece of affectionate fluff. Wouldn’t it make since to capitalize out of respect for the relationship. In the other hand, it looks really really awkward. I mean, of the following, which really looks better?

“I love you, Sweetie.”
“I love you, sweetie.”

This is worth contemplating. I suppose you could circumvent the problem by using all capitol letters, but I mean really…

“I LOVE YOU BABY!!!” makes you sound like an overexuberant freak.

I don’t know what to tell you, but I use capitol letters for every pet name. But that’s my inner grammar nerd talking. .


Yes, please use hyphens. Also, for the love of attractive letters, capitalize every word of the hyphenated compound. Kissy-Face looks WAY better than Kissy-face, kissy-Face, or kissy-face.

People love to be reminded of their eye color.

Brown-Eyes, Blue-Eyes, Green-Eyes. I mean, how can you get more affectionate than that?

You must have at least one made up name.

By the order of the gods of inside jokes, you must have that one special term of endearment for that one special someone. Calling your respective lover that is like wrapping a warm, protective blanket around them in the middle of winter. So unleash your inner desire to call your girlfriend Fruity Loop or your boyfriend Goober-Butt.

But what do I know. I suck at pet names. That’s why I wrote this blog post about it.



Matthew Estes

Matthew Estes currently exists in the ether between graudate student and full-time worker. One day he hopes to be a full-time novelist and blogger, but until that day comes he spends his time playing video games, eating pizza, and being with his soon-to-be wife. However, he has yet to do all three at the same time. Bucket list stuff, you know.

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