Definition of dingo in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈdɪŋɡəʊ/

noun (plural dingoes or dingos)

1A wild or half-domesticated dog with a sandy-coloured coat, found in Australia.
  • Canis dingo, family Canidae.
Example sentences
  • Because they prey on calves and sheep, dingoes and wild dogs are viewed as a threat to livestock.
  • The dingo, a wild dog, is thought to have contributed to the tiger's demise on mainland Australia and in Papua New Guinea.
  • Australia has long battled its native wild dog the dingo, but now domestic hunting dogs have bred with dingoes to produce a larger, aggressive feral dog.
2Australian informal A cowardly or treacherous person.

verb (dingoes, dingoing; past dingoed)

[no object]
Australian /NZ informal Behave in a cowardly manner: he dingoed out because he did not have the nerve [with object]: you have dingoed it on every occasion
More example sentences
  • I complied with their decision, but I have always felt that I dingoed it.
  • It would look like we'd dingoed it if we transferred now.
  • You ain't dingoing it, are you? You can't toss in the towel now.


dingo's breakfast

Australian informal No breakfast at all: after a dingo’s breakfast he set off back to Adelaide
More example sentences
  • He shook his head, “Had me a dingo's breakfast.”
  • The next morning I went for my usual Australian dingo's breakfast and noticed the loo wouldn't flush.
  • We resorted to a dingo's breakfast, before continuing on our passage north.


Late 18th century: from Dharuk din-gu 'domesticated dingo'; sense 2 of the noun dates from the mid 19th century and alludes to the treachery popularly associated with the dingo.

Words that rhyme with dingo

bingo, Domingo, flamingo, gringo, jingo, lingo

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: dingo

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