Do you love lions and cats but can’t care for the former due to obvious reasons? Then why don’t you christen your feline friend with a cool lion-inspired name? Lions and cats are alike in many ways, and they belong to the same family, so it makes a lot of sense to choose lion names for cats.
Other than the fact that cats and lions are alike in many ways, there are many other reasons why you should consider giving a lion-inspired name to your cat. Lion-inspired names often sound brave and regal. Lion-inspired names are also not as commonly given to cats as you might think, so you won’t need to worry about other cats in the neighborhood bearing the same name as your cat.
Continue reading as we run down some of the best lion names for cats. We have lion names divided by gender, lion names from movies, as well as exotic African and Asian names associated with lions. We will also give you the meanings behind these names. We’re confident that you will take a liking to at least one of the names discussed below.
Lion Names for Cats by Gender
Whether your cat is male or female, if he/she is brave, strong, and prideful, then he/she deserves to be christened with a lion-inspired name.
#1: Male Names
Male lions symbolize bravery and strength. It is only apt that you give a masculine lion name to an equally brave and powerful male cat. Here are some of the names that could be a good fit for your male cat:
Abbas: this is an Arabic word which means ‘stern and somber.’ It is also loosely used to refer to lions similar to the way “Leo” is used to describe the king of the beasts.
Aridai: this name comes from the Hebrew word ariyday, which translates to ‘lion is enough.’
Ariel: this is a name that we don’t usually associate with lions, but actually means‘ lion of God.’ It is a masculine name with Hebrew roots.
Asad: it is an Arabic name which translates to ‘lion.’ It is also associated with other qualities such as loyalty, strength, pride, and courage—traits which can also describe your cat.
Babur: it is the Mughul variant of the Persian name Babar. It means ‘lion.’
Cecil: this is in honor of Cecil the lion who was shot and killed by an American hunter in 2015. The death of Cecil made headlines because of his popularity among scientists and travelers in Zimbabwe.
Dillon: it is an Irish name which means ‘like a lion.’ It can also mean ‘loyal,’ which is a trait more frequently associated with dogs, but actually perfectly describes cats as well. It is pronounced DIL-un. Click here to find many other unique-sounding Irish cat names.
Gur: it is a Hebrew name which translates to ‘a young lion.’ In the Bible, the word means ‘the young of a beast.’
Haydar: an Arabic given name often used for boys, it has other variations such as Haidar, Heidar, and Haider. It is one of the many Arabic names for lion. It can also mean ‘brave.’
Jerome: this is a Greek name which means ‘sacred.’ It is also the name of a fourth-century scholar and saint, Jerome, who is often portrayed with a lion. It is said that he was able to remove a thorn from the pad of the animal, winning the lifelong loyalty of the beast in the process.
Kefir: a Hebrew name which means ‘baby lion.’ It is an appropriate moniker for male kittens. It’s exotic but quite easy to remember.
Leandro: this is the Spanish form of the Latin word leander, which means ‘lion-man.’
Leo: this is a no-brainer. Perhaps the most commonly-given lion name not only for cats but also for humans. Leo is the Latin word for ‘lion.’ The name is also the short variant of Leopold, which means ‘brave’ in German. Here’s another bit of trivia—this is also the name of the lion that appears in the MGM logo.
Leonidas: this is a Greek name which means ‘lion.’ It’s also a name that rings a bell to most people. It was the name of a Spartan hero-king who was immortalized in the movie ‘300.’
Levent: a Turkish given name which comes from the marines that served the Ottoman empire (called Leventler). The name means ‘the lions.’
Lewenhart: we like this name because it is very meaningful. It is an old German name that comes from two words: lewo which means ‘lion’ and hard which means ‘strong.’ It practically means ‘strong lion.’
Lionel: another Latin word which means ‘lion.’ It is believed to have been the French pet form of the Latin word leo. It is a name which was widely used in the Middle Ages.
Maximilian: it is a name which doesn’t have anything to do with lions but we feel is too strong to be left out of this list. It is a powerful name that connotes greatness and royalty; two traits we can associate with lions. If you find it too long, then you can simply call your cat Max.
Napoleone: an Italian given name which translates into ‘lion of Naples.’
Xerxes: this is the Greek variant of the Persian word or given name Xsayarsa, which means ‘lion king.’ It also refers to the king of Persia.
Zeus: it is the name of the Greek god who was considered the highest of all gods. It’s a name that is commonly associated with someone who’s on top of the food chain just like lions.
#2: Female Names
There’s no shortage of feminine lion names for our furry friends as well. These names connotate the beauty, elegance, bravery, and the hardworking nature of a lioness:
Aaliyah: this is a Hebrew name which means ‘ascending.’ Another variation is Aliyah. Does your cat like to climb? Consider building a DIY cat bridge for her.
Aria: a feminine name of Hebrew origin, it means ‘lioness.’ Here’s another bit of trivia: in music, the word ‘aria’ pertains to the leading character in an opera.
Ariela: the feminine version of the name Ariel, it also means ‘lioness of God.’ There are other variations such as Ariellel.
Hafsah: an Arabic name which means ‘young lioness.’ It is short, sweet, and meaningful. It could be the best name for a female kitten.
Leola: an Italian name which means ‘lion.’ In French, the name is also associated with qualities such as loyalty and faithfulness.
Leonie: this comes from the masculine Latin word leo which means ‘lion.’ It is a feminine given name that means ‘lioness.’
Loni: pronounced ‘Lah-nee,’ this is a name with Latin and Hebrew origins. The name refers to both ‘an oak tree’ and ‘a lion.’
Nalea: we like this name because it is short and exotic-sounding. It is of African and Hawaiian origins. In Africa, it means ‘queen’ or ‘lioness’ whereas in Hawaii, it means ‘lei of love.’
Savannah: as you know, lions live in savannahs. The word refers to ‘a treeless plain.’
Tawny: pronounced ‘Taw-nee,’ this is a name of Old English origins. It means ‘green field.’ It is believed that the name came from the word tanya, which refers to the warm and sandy color of the coat of a lion.
Lion Names from Movies and TV Shows
Lion characters from the movies and television shows can also be a good source of inspiration for lion names for your cat. We list down some of the more popular lion names from the movies and TV shows below:
Alex: it may sound like an ordinary name at first, but it is also the name of the lion in the Madagascar movie franchise. In the movies, he is described as the self-proclaimed ruler of the New York central zoo. He’s also very popular and lovable.
Aslan: this is the lead character in The Chronicles of Narnia series. He is depicted as a great lion. The name comes from the Turkish word for lion. In the books and the movies, he is characterized as a talking lion. He is also wise, compassionate, and strong.
Brave Heart: if you were old enough to catch Care Bears on television, then you may remember Brave Heart as the lion character in the group. Brave Heart is the orange lion with a very thick mane. This is also one of the most appropriate lion names because lions are always associated with exceptional courage.
Kimba: this is another character from an old TV series. Kimba is the lead character in a Japanese adventure series. He is a white lion who is courageous and noble. The perfect name for a white cat. Here’s another article filled with great name suggestions for white cats.
Mufasa: a character from The Lion King, Mufasa is the father of Simba. In the movie, he is presented as being noble, wise, and courageous: qualities that may remind you of your favorite cat.
Nala: she is the wife of Simba in The Lion King franchise. She is the mother of Kopa and Kiara and considered to be the Queen of Pride Rock. Her name has African roots and means ‘beloved.’
Scar: the name is derived from the main antagonist in The Lion King franchise. Scar is the brother of Mufasa and the uncle of Simba who plots against him.
Simba: who doesn’t know Simba from The Lion King? The character’s name came from the Swahili word for ‘lion.’ The name Simba also has other definitions like ‘king.’
African Lion Names for Cats
Since most lions are native to Africa, it only makes sense to give your cat a lion name inspired by African words. Here are our top choices for the best African lion names for cats:
Ade: short and easy to remember, this is a Nigerian word which means ‘royalty.’ Lions are considered the king of the jungle. Hence this name is apt for them, as well as for your feline friend.
Fahari: pronounced fah-HAH-ree, it is a Swahili word which means ‘magnificent.’ It is a unisex name that you can give to any cat regardless of gender.
Kamili: this is a feminine given name which we feel can also be versatile enough to be used on a male cat. It is a Kenyan word which means ‘perfect.’
Kehlan: Kehlan is a Nigerian word which means ‘powerful.’
Unika: pronounced oo-NEE-kah, this is a name which is more appropriate for female cats. It means ‘shine,’ thus you can give this name to a cat who’s outshining other pets in the household!
Zane: another word from the Swahili language, it means ‘well-born or noble.’
Zuri: it is a feminine name. The word has Swahilian origins and means ‘beautiful.’
See Also: African Cat Names
Asian Lion Names for Cats
Lions also roam parts of Asia, especially in India. It is thus not a surprise that many Asian countries have different names or words for lions. You may find any of these names appropriate for your cat:
Kesar: this is a Bengali word for ‘lioness.’ Although it is more of a feminine name, you may also use it on a male cat. The name also suggests positive traits like strength and prosperity.
Shishi: there are several meanings and stories about this word. In Chinese, it is said to refer to a guardian lion. The name also appears in Japanese and can mean different things such as strength and courage.
Simha/Singa: this is a Sanskrit word which means ‘lion.’ In fact, the city-state of Singapore got its name from it. This also explains why Singapore is often called ‘the Lion City.’
Singh: the name is a variation of Simha and obviously means ‘lion’ as well.
See Also: Asian Cat Names
Lions and cats come from the same family. They are both excellent hunters—both are also agile and strong. With these similarities, giving your cat a lion name really makes sense. As you have learned from reading this article, there is no shortage of lion names you can give to your pet cat.
Do you have a favorite from among the names we listed above? Have you come up with some great lion-inspired naming ideas of your own? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below. Talk soon! If you haven’t found the perfect name for your leonine cat, do check out our elegant cat names article.