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HIT AND RUN–VOTE NOW for Name That Dog & Name That Cat Contest for New Thriller

by | Apr 12, 2020 | Cat Behavior & Care, Contest, Dog Training & Care, Fiction | 15 comments

NOMINATIONS & VOTING CLOSED: As of April 19, there are 158 cat names and 172 dog names nominated, woot!

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Those who have followed the September & Shadow pet-centric thriller series know that with each book I’ve held a contest to NAME THAT DOG and NAME THAT CAT character in the stories. In fact, the winning canine or feline not only gets named but often the pet’s foibles are incorporated in the story.

HIT AND RUN, Name That Pet!

Now it’s your turn to NAME THAT DOG and NAME THAT CAT!

A dog trainer with hidden secrets. A dead body with the keys to the past. Sniffing out the truth could get them all killed.

I sent out my Pet Peeves newsletter announcing this to my subscribers (they will always get the news first! have YOU subscribed yet?). I’ve already received more than 330 suggestions (some folks submitted many names) but always share on my blog, too.

A message from the grave propels September on a mission to answer shocking questions about her past. But one by one, her sources die before she can reach them. Now death stalks September to silence her as well. Can Shadow thwart the killer? Will Macy-Cat sniff out the key to unmask a decades-old horror?

For those who have NOT read my thrillers, rest assured that I hate stories where animals are killed for shock value. While my books are suspenseful and thrilling, that is a line I don’t ever cross.

writing advice


There were so many brilliant suggestions and names, MANY with gorgeous photos plus moving “gotcha-day” or other stories, that y’all inspired me to add a couple more pet heroes to the story. I’ll probably be sharing some of those pictures and stories in future newsletters–you won’t want to miss that! So instead of one dog and one cat, there will be TWO of each.


The winning names not only will be included in the book, but your name and real pet’s description will be added to the “fact or fiction” acknowledgments in the book, and I’ll send you a paw-tographed physical copy of the book as soon as it comes out.

The top two names in each poll will win the contest. You can vote as many times as you wish, and share the poll with your friends.


Both cats are PROBABLY Maine Coons, as s/he belongs to Macy-Cat’s breeder. However, often professional catteries also have non-pedigreed kitty companions, too, so I’m open.

One cat has bonded with a young girl “helper” at the cattery. The girl runs, with the cat, when confronted by the killer. The other cat has bonded with the breeder and protects her from all perceived threats–human or canine.


One dog any age, any breed, any size. This mysterious dog appears out of a snowstorm. The dog probably belongs to a local farmer. The same young girl mentioned above runs from the killer and gets run off the road and trapped in her car. The dog climbs through the broken car window to keep the driver warm, and later, blocks a police car passing on the road to alert to the accident.

The second dog, any age, any breed, any size, ends up with Theodore “Teddy” Williams (from previous books). I’m still not sure his dog fits into the story so the inspiration will come from which dog wins the contest.


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I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered? Do you have a new kitten and need answers? NOTE: Some links to books or other products may be to affiliates, from which I may earn a small percentage of sales, but I do not recommend anything unless I feel it would benefit readers. Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter. Stay up to date with the latest book give aways and appearances related to my September Day pet-centric THRILLERS WITH BITE!


  1. Crystal

    I made a few a few suggestions even sent you a story. I hope I win. I love your site.

  2. jim Duncan

    I think the name of the dog should be Pretty Boy, He is a younger collie that worked the farm as a herder/guard dog. He gets the name because the girl when she wakes up calls him “such a pretty boy” and the dog responds with a tail wag and a nuzzle rub snuggle.

    The cat could be named Cuddles since it is so bonded with the girl.

  3. Theresa Littlefield

    Of course I have to recommend Oliver. He is not a Maine Coon as a matter of fact he is a red tabby, but he is the sweetest kitty and has a lot of dog qualities. I adopted him after a friend saw the car in front of him toss a kitten out of the window of a moving car. My friend stopped and rescued the kitty who then found his way I to my heart and home. He is very cuddly, plays fetch better than my dog, comes when I call him (90% of the time…after all he is a cat), he is talkative, and he is a very loud purr-er.

  4. Paula Gregg

    I’m submitting my first Persian named Sweet Praline. Praline was a tortoiseshell Persian with a Phantom if the Opera masked face. She was beaut and she knew it and she was a diva with an attitude.

  5. Karin Stoil

    My Maine Coon was named Haley , she was such a smart and sassy cat. She would use her paw to show where she wanted someone to go. My favorite dog was Corky , he was such a devoted dog. Also used to bring home baby rabbits and acted like their mother.

  6. Joy kuhnke

    Dogs name, Montana. I am a trainer, and Montana trained in search and rescue, and cadaver work for a while. So much of your description, says my dog Montana.

  7. Amy Hoffman-Shehan

    I’m suggesting 2 cats from my past. Octavius was a family cat growing up. He was a large beautiful orange tabby with distinct markings. He was a man’s man, kept everyone in the household in line by nipping at ankles and tripping us if we didn’t please him. Our family home was on a busy corner, and he manipulated traffic by lying out in the middle of the street. When a car approached, he would slowly pick himself up and stroll across the street to let the car pass.
    Scooter was my first dog in my adult life. He was a blue healer who was found as a stray puppy. He was the most intelligent dog I’ve ever been around. He was constantly on point, looking for a job to do, super serious about playing ball until he couldn’t stand. He loved to drink from the garden hose and understood complicated commands. I could tell him to get the newspaper from one neighbor’s yard and take it to another neighbor’s yard!

    • Amy Hoffman-Shehan

      Oops! I meant to type 2 pets, not 2 cats.

  8. Victoria Vidal-Ribas

    Submitting a suggestion for the dog character.

    Suggested name – Grail. He is a six years old, tall lanky black Labrador retriever who loves snow and water He is gentle and loving with all people and animals but is focussed and driven when he is on a job. He is a good problem solver and lives to solve scent detection problems. He is an elite level scent detection dog in real life and will work with whomever needs him.

  9. Piper Bayard

    The Maine Coon — Giacomo Casanova is his name, because he’s just too cool, and everyone loves him. Giacco for short, he brought in his first bird at 10 weeks old. He wakes up dogs to glare at them. He opens cupboards to get to the catnip and then rolls in it right on the counter. He runs through the house, jumps on the bathroom rug, and surfs it up against the far wall. He loves to be spun around in the clothes basket. Being a free spirit, a collar and leash are out of the question, but he follows at her heel on walks because he loves her, and he loves adventures together. He is a gray tabby with a white nose, white-tipped ears, a white belly, and white toes on three feet. And those toes! He is polydactyl, having twenty-seven toes with an extra foot pad on his front left. She did not choose him. When she picked him up the first time, he gazed up at her with his clear blue eyes and held her finger, using his extra toes like an opposing thumb. She knew he had chosen her. His big heart, fearless nature, and resilience give her the courage to try new things in a big and uncertain world.

  10. Amy Shojai

    Okay, I allowed one last nomination on Saturday April 18, but additional nominations are CLOSED. Please vote in the poll (once they post) for your favorites — share the poll, vote as often as you like, the polls will close on May 1st.

  11. Piper Bayard

    Sorry. I’m not smarter than your website, and I’m not finding the link to vote.

      • Piper Bayard

        Thank you. Not sure why I’m not seeing that.

        • Amy Shojai

          You might have to clear your cookies, it might be showing the older version rather than updated post.



  1. HIT AND RUN--6 WINNERS for Name That Dog & Name That Cat Contest - […] Holy WOW, so many votes for the nominations for HIT AND RUN contest winner for dog and cat characters.…

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