Hawaiian Cat Names: Soothing Island Names

Hawaiian cat wearing sunglasses and having rest
Martha Harvey
Written by Martha Harvey

Hawaii is one of those places in the world that has a distinct love of cats. Did you know that there’s even an island in Hawaii where you can hang out with hundreds of cats? But that’s not the only thing that makes Hawaiian cat names apt and relevant.

Aside from the love that Hawaiians have for our feline friends, other reasons why you should consider giving a Hawaiian cat name to your pet include the fact that these island names sound very beautiful and exotic. There’s only a slim chance that any other cats in the neighborhood would have the same name as your cat.

Moreover, Hawaiian names exude a feeling of peace and tropical comfort—not to mention the fact that most Hawaiian names have a very positive and uplifting meaning.

In this post, you will learn some of the best Hawaiian names you can give to your cat. We’ve separated this huge and comprehensive list into several sections—by gender, by physical traits, by behavioral traits, and we’ve also included a list of Hawaiian terms of endearments.

Hawaiian Cat Names by Gender

British cat wearing hawaiian shirt

Male and female Hawaiian names can seem quite similar because they both sound beautiful, but there’s a certain gender distinction between the two of them. Although, even if you have a female cat, you won’t want to miss out on the list of names for male cats either because just maybe the perfect name is waiting there.

#1: Male Hawaiian Cat Names

If you have a male cat and you still don’t have a moniker for him, you can choose from these cool Hawaiian masculine names:

  • Akamai: pronounced “ah-KAH-mie,” this is a Hawaiian name that means ‘intelligent and clever.’ This is a great name for an intelligent cat like a Bengal or a Cornish Rex.

  • Akoni: pronounced “ah-KOH-nee” this is the Hawaiian version of the name Anthony. The latter is the modern-day equivalent of the Roman name Antonius. All of the names mean ‘worthy of praise.’

  • Alika: like Akoni, this name has European roots. It is the Hawaiian form of the Greek name Alexander. It has numerous meanings like ‘defender and guardian of the people.’ It is pronounced “ah-LEE-kah.”

  • Ano: a shorter name compared to the three previous choices, this word has Finnish roots. It means ‘immaculate.’ You may want to use this on a white-colored male cat given its connotation.

  • Aoloa: in Hawaii, this word is often used to refer to cirrus clouds. But there’s a figurative meaning to this word. It also means ‘distinguished individual.’ The correct way of pronouncing this name is “ah-oh-LAW-ah.”

  • Haku: if you watched wrestling in the ‘80s, then you may remember that there was a wrestler who used this name. The name has also been used in some Japanese TV series, as it is a cool term that means ‘white’ in Japanese. In Hawaiian, the name means ‘overseer.’

  • Hani: short, catchy, and easy to remember; this name simply means ‘happy’ in Hawaiian. It is a name you would want to use on a fun-loving feline.

  • Haulani: this name is pronounced ‘how-LAH-nee’ and means ‘imperial ruler.’ It is an appropriate name for a royal cat breed such as the Khao Manee.

  • Kaholo: do you have an agile cat? Then we suggest that you name him Kaholo, which means ‘nimble’ in Hawaiian. The name is also derived from one of the steps in the popular Hula dance.

  • Kaiko: pronounced ‘kah-EE-koh,” this is a Hawaiian name meaning ‘sea with a strong current.’ It comes from two Hawaiian words—kai meaning ‘sea’ and ‘ko’ meaning ‘strong current.’ It could be a great name for a strong and hyperactive pet.

#2: Female Hawaiian Cat Names

There are also plenty of choices if you have a female cat. A few of the best ones would be:

  • Kala: short and sweet, it is the Hawaiian variant of the Hebrew name “Sarah,” which means ‘lady-like.’ In the scriptures, Sarah was the wife of Abraham and was described to be a great beauty.

  • Kekepania: it is a bit long for a cat name but what we love about this name is its connotation. It is the Hawaiian version of the Greek name Stephanie which means ‘woman with a crown.’ Pronounced “keh-keh-pah-NEE-yah,” this is a unique and meaningful name you would want to give to a female cat.

  • Lani: another short, sweet, and meaningful name, this Hawaiian word is pronounced “LAY-nee.” It means ‘heavenly woman.’

  • Mele: pronounced “MEH-leh,” it is the Hawaiian variant of the Hebrew name Miryam. Interestingly, it was also the name of the mother of Jesus, Virgin Mary. Miryam has many meanings like ‘long-awaited child’ and ‘rebellious.’ If you just got a female cat after years of waiting, or your female pet is quite hardheaded, then you might want to use this name.

  • Nalani: this name means ‘quiet skies’ in Hawaiian. It is a nice name for a kind and obedient female cat.

  • Puanani: this Hawaiian name is quite meaningful. It means ‘gorgeous flower.’ We suggest you use this on a cat who’s stunningly beautiful. By the way, the correct pronunciation of this name is “poo-ah-NAH-nee.”

#3: Unisex Hawaiian Cat Names

tabby cat having rest on beach

The Hawaiian culture has also given birth to plenty of unisex names. Here are some names you may want to use:

  • Kai: while many people think that this is a masculine name, it is actually a unisex name in Hawaii. It means ‘from the sea.’

  • Kaipo: another unisex name, it means “darling” in Hawaiian. It was more widely used for females in the 19th century.

  • Kaliko: another easy-to-remember name, this one means ‘beautiful flower bud.’ You would want to give this name to any beautiful cat. Although, in actuality, any cat can become beautiful if you’d just invest some time and energy into some proper cat grooming.

  • Kalua: pronounced “kah-LOH-ah,” this name translates to ‘the second child’ in Hawaiian. It is an appropriate moniker for your second cat.

  • Kamaka: a simple and easy to remember the name, this one translates to ‘child.’

  • Kekoa: this name means ‘courageous.’ It is pronounced ‘keh-KOH-ah.’ If you are old enough to remember, this name was featured on the TV series Baywatch.

  • Leialoha: this one means “darling child” in Hawaiian. It used to be a feminine name, but it has also been given to males, too.

  • Moana: this may surprise you especially after the Disney movie of the same name that was released some time ago, however, Moana is actually a name that can be given to either sex, not just females. It means ‘from the ocean.’

Names Based on Physical Traits

beautiful gray kitten sitting on coach

There are also several Hawaiian names that you can use to describe the physical traits of your pet. A few of our favorites are:

  • Haukea: an appropriate name for a white cat. hau means ‘snow’ while kea means ‘white.’

  • Haunani: do you have a white-coated female cat who’s just too beautiful to be given an ordinary name? Then give her the name “Haunani.” This name comes from two Hawaiian words: hau which means ‘snow’ and nani which means ‘beauty.’ It literally translates to ‘beautiful snow.’ The name is pronounced “how-NA-nee.”

  • Hina: a beautiful, gray coated cat deserves a cute and short name like “Hina.” This word literally means ‘gray.’ There is also a Hawaiian moon goddess named Hina, by the way. You can find many other name suggestions for gray cats here.

  • Hiwakea: don’t have a name for a black and white cat? Try this word which is pronounced “hee vah keh yah.” This Hawaiian name means ‘black and white.’ If you have a tuxedo cat, you’ll be glad to know that we’ve got a whole article dedicated to name suggestions for that particular coat pattern here.

  • Ikaika: this is a very catchy name that you can give to a male cat. It has many positive connotations such as ‘strong and powerful.’ This is a nice name for strong and big cat breeds such as the Savannah.

  • Konani: this is another name for a white-coated cat. It means ‘bright’ in Hawaiian. It can be given to both male and female cats.

  • Nohea: this is a unisex cat name which means ‘beautiful.’ It is pronounced ‘noh-HEH-ah.’

  • Polo: a name that means ‘fat.’ You can also repeat the name (Polo-Polo) just for fun. Don’t let your cat stay overweight for too long, though, as it can be very unhealthy. Learn how to make a cat lose weight now.

  • Ula: a Hawaiian word that means ‘red.’ It may be a good choice if you have a red-haired cat such as a Somali.

  • Uli: rounding out our list of Hawaiian names pertaining to the physical traits of cats is the word Uli. This Hawaiian word means ‘dark.’ It is traditionally used to describe dark colors like black eyes and dark clouds. You can also repeat the word (Uli-Uli) which is a more direct way of referring to the color black. For other black cat names, visit this link.

Names Based on a Cat’s Behavior

cool and calm white cat

Cats can be outgoing, friendly, reserved, and funny. No matter which behavioral trait stands out in your cat, there are plenty of Hawaiian names or words that can describe it. Here’s a list of good Hawaiian names to describe your cat’s behavior:

  • Eleu: pronounced “eh leu,” this is a Hawaiian name that means ‘alert and lively.’ You can name your cat Eleu if he or she is energetic, agile, spry, and nimble.

  • Hau’oli: pronounced “hau oh’ lee,” this name means ‘happy.’ It is an apt name for a cat who’s a bundle of joy.

  • Holo Nui: this word is often used to describe any person that runs fast. Pronounced “hoh loh nui,” it’s the perfect name for your energetic cat.

  • Iolana: this Hawaiian word means ‘to soar.’ It is traditionally given to females. However, it also makes a great name for a male cat who’s hyperactive and loves jumping around. It is pronounced “io-la-na.”

  • Kupa’a: pronounced “KOO pah ah,” this Hawaiian word means ‘loyal.’

  • Lae’ula: this one means ‘clever.’ You should name a well-trained cat “Lae’ula,” which is pronounced “lae oo’ lah.”

  • Laka: do you have a cat who’s as meek as a lamb? You can name him/her “Laka.” The name means ‘gentle or tame’ in Hawaiian.

  • Lalama: this word means ‘fearless or daring.’

  • Malie: do you have a female cat who’s cool and calm no matter how chaotic the household can get? Then why don’t give her this name? It translates to ‘calm’ in Hawaiian.

  • Nahoa: pronounced ‘nah hoh wah,’ this name means ‘defiant and bold.’ A cat who’s a bit hardheaded certainly deserves this moniker.

Hawaiian Endearments

boy embracing orange cat

If you are still unsure of which name to give your pet, here you’ll find a list of Hawaiian terms of endearments that make great options for any cat:

  • Halia: this term signifies ‘remembrance of a loved one.’

  • Hiwahiwa: this one has plenty of positive connotations like ‘precious, darling, and beloved.’ It is a good name to give to your favorite cat.

  • Ipo: it means ‘sweetheart.’ A cute name for any cat regardless of gender.

  • Kei: it is a short name with plenty of positive connotations. It can mean ‘dignified or glorious.’ If you are to call your cat this name, it means your feline friend is your pride and glory.

  • Ku u Maka: this one means “apple of my eye.” It should be a great and fitting name for a pet you simply can’t get enough of. The name is pronounced “koo oo mah kah.”

  • Ku’u Hoaloaha Oi: not exactly the shortest word on this list but it is very meaningful. It means “my best friend.” If you’re wondering how to pronounce it, this word should be uttered as “koo ooh oh wah lol hah oi.”

  • Maka: another short and easy to remember moniker, Maka means ‘favorite.’ Need we say more?

Wrap Up

cat having rest on beach

From names that describe your cat’s color to his/her demeanor and other physical attributes, there are simply too many Hawaiian names that can be perfect for your cat. You will also like the fact that Hawaiian names have a distinct sound. Your cat will likely appreciate being given a Hawaiian name because these names are easy to pick out

Have you picked a Hawaiian name for your feline friend? What is your choice? You can share it with others by writing in the comments section below. If you have yet to find a suitable name for your cat, but you know for sure that you want a fun name that has a positive, happy connotation, check out our list of alcohol-related cat names.

About the author
Martha Harvey
Martha Harvey

Martha Harvey is a skilled veterinarian and a member of American Veterinary Medical Association from Greeley, Colorado. She has 20 years experience of working in Animal Hospital. Martha loves all of her patients, but her favorite one is the Russian Blue cat Stitch, who lives with her.