Last year, after years of not having any cats, my family welcomed two rescue kittens into the mix. Neither adoption was planned, but sometimes the best pets are the ones that simply find us and let us know it's time to go home.  

Our first cat came to us when my daughters and I headed to the local farmers market to purchase tomatoes. Unbeknownst to me, there was also a kitten adoption drive going on. And as soon as my girls laid eyes on the little black ball of fur with the exact some coloring as the sweet lab we had just lost to old age, they were lost — and so was I. My youngest daughter named our new family member Mickey, after the lead character in the book, "The Cat Who Thought He Was A Mouse." I don't know that Mickey ever thought he was a mouse, but I do know that he was 100-percent sure that he was a member of our family from day one.

We hadn't planned on adding a cat to our family. And we were even less prepared to add another one to the mix just three days later. But when the girls found a tiny stray kitten near the trash can during a Girl Scout event at our local park, we knew there was no way we could leave her behind. We named her — obviously — Scout.

So that's how our cats — and cat names — came to be. I like to think their monikers fall someone around a 6 or 7 on the originality scale. But I can also admit that as a kid I have had pets with at least three of the names on ASPCA Pet Health Insurance's list of most common cat names of all time: Max, Smokey and Shadow. (Does it count that I originally wanted to name my youngest daughter Lucy?)

Can you find your cat's name on the list?

1. Max
2. Lucy
3. Smokey
4. Shadow
5. Charlie

On the other end of the spectrum, ASPCA also keeps track of some of the most original cat names to come across their desks. Here is their list of the top eight most unusual cat names:

  1. Purrsia
  2. Stevie Thunder
  3. Princess Lollipop
  4. Catmandue
  5. Lady Marmalade
  6. Peter the Great
  7. Halley Beri Flufferton III
  8. Candy Corn
So let's hear it. Does your cat have an original name? Or do you have a little Charlie or Smokey kitten? Let us know your cat's name — and the name's origins — in the comments below.

Related posts on MNN:

5 most popular cat names of all time
8 of the friskiest feline names ever recorded at the animal shelter.