I'm writing a plugin for adding a Custom Post called"Dog". The core of the plugin is strictly based on this one https://github.com/RescueThemes/Rescue-Animal-Custom-Posts

I prefer to add predefined sexes after the plugin activation, I would like to add "Male", "Female", "Unapplicable" from the start.

So, based on other resources I wrote that in the same .php plugin file

Consider that I changed the taxonomy name from "Genders" to "Sexes" from the original plugin.

add_action( 'init', 'create_dog_taxonomies', 0 );

function create_dog_taxonomies() {

// Sex taxonomy
    $labels = array( 
    'name' => _x( 'Sexes', 'shelter-dogs' ),

    $args = array( 
        'labels' => $labels,
        'public' => true,
        'show_in_nav_menus' => true,
        'show_ui' => true,
        'show_tagcloud' => true,
        'hierarchical' => false,
        'rewrite' => true,
        'query_var' => true

    register_taxonomy( 'dog_sex', array('shelter_dogs'), $args );

add_action('init', 'add_sexes', 100);

function add_sexes()
      'Male', // the term 
      'Sexes', // the taxonomy
        'slug' => 'Male'

I get the Sexes taxonomy, but no predefined values. Where's the problem?

1 Answer 1


Maybe try wp_insert_term once the plugin has been enabled: https://codex.wordpress.org/Function_Reference/wp_insert_term


  'Male', // the term 
  'dog_sex', // the taxonomy
    'slug' => 'male',
  • where should I put it?
    – lucgenti
    Jun 8, 2016 at 21:29
  • 1
    It needs to be called after the taxonomy has been registered (and only called once). Also your taxonomy in the example above is actually dog_sex therefore in my example sexes needs to be updated to dog_sex
    – emily
    Jun 8, 2016 at 21:45
  • Oh my god. That was the problem: I shouldn't put the name label, but the actual string I use for registering the taxonomy, dog_sex. Thank you, now it adds terms successfully! What's the way you suggest to run it once but integrate it in a good fashion inside a plugin? Via the plugin_activation hook?
    – lucgenti
    Jun 9, 2016 at 14:51
  • Seems like I have another problem: terms are in the database and are visible from the Taxonomy menu "Sex", but they're not visible on the metabox that appears when adding a custom post. But that happens only if the taxonomy is not hierarchical.
    – lucgenti
    Jun 9, 2016 at 15:38

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