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What Is a Male Dog Called?

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OK, I have to admit that I call our male dog Barli a “boy”–but that’s not the “official” terminology for a male dog! If you’re wondering what a male dog is called, there are different terms for a male that cover your dog from puppyhood and into adulthood. Let’s dig in and have a look.

What Is a Male Dog Called?

What do you call a male dog?

A male dog is called a dog! The term dog refers both to the species canis familiaris as well as the male members of the species.

In the dog breeding world, a male is a dog and a female dog is a bitch–but those terms are primarily used by dog breeders and in the dog show world.

In the everyday world, different terms are used and dogs are typically called a “male dog” — but don’t feel that is a redundancy. If we were to make a vet appointment for Barli and were asked to describe him, we’d say he’s a male or boy dog (or a “neutered dog.”)

And if you’re wondering about the origin of the word dog, well, it’s a bit of a mystery. It is derived from the Middle English dogge which came from the Old English docga but these terms first referred to not-so-nice dogs (and not-so-nice people).

Terms for Males Used for Breeding

Just like “dam” is used for a female dog who is used for breeding, you’ll find that there are special terms for males involved in breeding.

A male that’s used for breeding is a “stud” while a dog who has fathered a litter is a “sire.”

The sire and the dam are the parents of a litter of puppies.

And those puppies? When they’re newborns, they are “whelps.” Whelping is the act of the dog giving birth so the newborn puppies are whelps.

What do you call a dog that has been neutered?

A neutered dog is called simply a “neutered dog” or colloquially a “dog who has been fixed.” (The casual term “fixed” is used to refer to both male and female dogs who have been de-sexed.)

You don’t need to say a “neutered male dog” since only males are neutered; a de-sexed female dog is a “spayed dog.”

What is a grandfather dog called?

We’ve never known the parents or the grandparents of our dogs since they’re all from shelters but breeders have records on the lineage of puppies, including the grandfathers of the puppies.

There are two terms to identify the “grandfather” of puppies.

  • The “damsire” is the sire (father) of the dam (the mother of the puppies) so he’s the dog grandfather on the mother’s side.
  • The term Grand Sire can be used to mean the grandfather on either the female or male side.

So there you have it! Whether you are talking about a dog, a dog who has fathered puppies–or grandfathered puppies–or a neutered dog, you now know all the terminology!

When it comes to terminology, I know the one our Barli most likes to hear: good boy!

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What is a male dog called?
Paris Permenter
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