Definition of dog in English:

dog

Syllabification: dog
Pronunciation: /dôɡ
 
/

noun

1A domesticated carnivorous mammal that typically has a long snout, an acute sense of smell, and a barking, howling, or whining voice. It is widely kept as a pet or for work or field sports.
  • Canis familiaris, family Canidae (the dog family); probably domesticated from the wolf in the Mesolithic period. The dog family also includes the wolves, coyotes, jackals, and foxes
More example sentences
  • Shouts mingle with the barking and howling of dogs.
  • ‘All dogs have an intense sense of smell, and every dog likes to sniff,’ Smith said.
  • Her size makes it impractical to use her as a patrol dog, but her sense of smell is so keen she can detect even trace amounts of drugs.
Synonyms
hound, canine; mongrel, mutt, cur; pup, puppy
informal doggy/doggie, pooch, furball, man's best friend
1.1A wild animal of the dog family.
More example sentences
  • We watched the wild cats and dogs frolicking in the winter sunlight.
  • Teufel-hunden were originally known as the wild, ferocious mountain dogs of Bavarian folklore.
  • In most mammals, adult play is rare, but it is common in dolphins, members of the dog family, great apes and, of course, humans.
1.2The male of an animal of the dog family, or of some other mammals such as the otter: [as modifier]: a dog fox
More example sentences
  • The male dog otter measured 41.5 inches in length with a girth of 26 inches.
  • A male, or dog, otter can range over six to eight miles, far further than a female.
  • A member of the waterworks department shot a fine dog otter on the lower Rivington reservoir.
2 informal A person regarded as unpleasant, contemptible, or wicked (used as a term of abuse): come out, Michael, you dog!
More example sentences
  • By the way, you can keep the pun you wretched journalistic dogs.
2.1 [with adjective] dated Used to refer to a person of a specified kind in a tone of playful reproof, commiseration, or congratulation: you lucky dog!
More example sentences
  • He got up with his hand wrapped around her little waist… that lucky dog!
  • If that next race is the bottom of the new grade, this lucky dog might have a chance of stumbling into the money again.
  • It's true - I'm a lucky dog.
2.2Used in various phrases to refer to someone who is abject or miserable, especially because they have been treated harshly: I make him work like a dog Rob was treated like a dog
More example sentences
  • The schools are good so there's no need to work like a dog to pay school fees.
  • Do you think this helps explain why today's corporate bosses are treating American workers like dogs?
  • They were treated as dogs, they were hungry, and the goddess of justice refused to review their plight.
2.3 informal derogatory A woman regarded as unattractive.
2.4 informal , chiefly North American A thing of poor quality; a failure: a dog of a movie
More example sentences
  • Move too early, and you might end up backing a dog of a technology.
  • If he understands that it's a dog of a deal, why do you think he'd consider supporting it?
  • With a lead clenched less than firmly in his sweaty palm, he then contrived to play a dog of a game in the middle of the second set.
3 short for firedog.
4A mechanical device for gripping.
More example sentences
  • The firm have been making grips for years and these dogs here felt so soft and comfortable.
5 (dogs) North American informal Feet: if only I could sit down and rest my tired dogs

verb (dogs, dogging, dogged)

[with object] Back to top  
1Follow (someone or their movements) closely and persistently: photographers seemed to dog her every step
More example sentences
  • When you have a leader of his passion and effectiveness, you have a media that's very much tracking him and dogging him and trying to find what they can about him.
  • He laughs about how the police are still - and probably forever - on his tail, even dogging him on his recent US book tour.
  • Since Sally was the only member of the group who would acknowledge Yap's existence, the little gnome dogged her every step, chattering excitedly.
Synonyms
1.1(Of a problem) cause continual trouble for: their finance committee has been dogged by controversy
More example sentences
  • For the last 5-1/2 years this process has been dogged by problem after problem.
  • The school - which has a police officer stationed on site - has been on special measures for five years and has been dogged by problems.
  • The system has been dogged with problems since it came on line in 1999.
Synonyms
2 (dog it) informal , chiefly North American Act lazily; fail to try one’s hardest.
More example sentences
  • He entered the season with a reputation for dogging it when he wasn't the primary receiver.
  • He loved the game and didn't mind ragging on the players when they were dogging it.
  • The Americans actually were dogging it late in the third as the Germans led 67-65, but Pierce sank a 10-spot on their heads as a part of a 12-0 run to close the quarter.
3Grip (something) with a mechanical device: [with object and complement]: she has dogged the door shut
More example sentences
  • Its convex shape and dogging mechanism made it look as though it were an enlarged part of a submarine, scavenged from some terrestrial scrap yard and grafted onto the bulkhead.
  • There was a muted boom as the Captain closed and dogged the ships inner lock shut behind us.
  • She places the child inside the engineering space before stepping through herself and dogging the hatch behind her.

Origin

Old English docga, of unknown origin.

Phrases

dog eat dog

Used to refer to a situation of fierce competition in which people are willing to harm each other in order to succeed: in this business, it’s always dog eat dog popular music is a dog-eat-dog industry
More example sentences
  • So there's a harsh side to the real world of competition; where competition's fierce, it can be dog eat dog.
  • ‘It's very quiet, the standard is unbelievably high and it's dog eat dog,’ says Maguire.
  • It's a dog eat dog situation even in the law enforcers' world.

a dog's age

North American informal A very long time: the best I’ve seen in a dog’s age
More example sentences
  • Later that same Sunday, I went to the first major comix/sci-fi convention to come to Boston in a dog's age.
  • I'd known him for a dog's age but a little bit of Jer went a long way.
  • It was some of the funniest stuff I'd seen in a dog's age.

a dog's life

An unhappy existence, full of problems or unfair treatment.
More example sentences
  • And the man on street (literally and figuratively) has a dog's life.
  • He is leading a dog's life at the moment.
  • The self-evident fact that the numbers applying for asylum correlate precisely with countries where a dog's life would be a step up is of no account.

the dogs of war

literary The havoc accompanying military conflict.
[from Shakespeare's Julius Caesar ( iii. 1. 274)]
More example sentences
  • They hate having to break from a comfortable routine and they will cry havoc and loose the dogs of war on anybody who tries to take something from them.
  • He has no reason to let loose the dogs of war on his neighbours.
  • One problem with loosing the dogs of war is that sometimes it's hard to get them back on the leash.

every dog has its day

proverb Everyone will have good luck or success at some point in their lives.
More example sentences
  • There comes a time to stop, every dog has its day, and I think I have had mine.
  • In parallel with his ascendancy to the top of the NFL tree went his present team, their unlikely transformation from zeroes to heroes last season illustrating that every dog has its day.
  • It's not nice to keep losing but every dog has its day.

go to the dogs

informal Deteriorate shockingly: the country is going to the dogs
More example sentences
  • When the factories closed, everything went to the dogs.
  • Law and order went to the dogs after the Whitlam social experiments of excessive welfare, booming populations of single mothers, poor discipline in schools.
  • Everybody had to run hard to keep up the real level of their own earnings, while the country went to the dogs.

hair of the dog

see hair.

let sleeping dogs lie

see sleep.

not a dog's chance

No chance at all.
More example sentences
  • There is not a dog's chance of that happening.
  • He says, ‘They are not to blame, they have not a dog's chance - we should be like them if we settled here.’
  • There is not a dog's chance of the country recovering to the top half of the organisation within a decade.

put on the dog

North American informal Behave in a pretentious or ostentatious way: we have to put on the dog for Anne Marie
More example sentences
  • Al, with his short curly hair greased back, was putting on the dog and crooning a ballad into a microphone.
  • The CEO put on the dog today as he welcomed customers to the enterprise software company's annual users' conference.
  • Because the companies usually have inked deals before the show with key licensees, why drag the whole staff and put on the dog for three dizzying days?

rain cats and dogs

see rain.

(as) sick as a dog

see sick1.

throw someone to the dogs

Discard someone as worthless: the weak and oppressed must not be thrown to the dogs
More example sentences
  • Then the punters, who have encouraged every vice or flaw, hold up their hands in mock outrage and throw them to the dogs.
  • I'm willing to throw him to the dogs for leaking about our listening in on the terrorist's satellite phones.
  • The clear inference was that the Island authorities got wind of the investigation and decided to throw him to the dogs.

you can't teach an old dog new tricks

proverb You cannot make people change their established patterns of opinion and behavior.
More example sentences
  • I wonder if sometimes doctors think it's unsuitable because they think you can't teach an old dog new tricks.
  • But I say that you can't teach an old dog new tricks.
  • Like they say, you can't teach an old dog new tricks.

Derivatives

doglike

adjective
More example sentences
  • Today the slender doglike creatures with pointy ears and bushy tails can be found in every state except Hawaii.
  • Somewhat doglike in appearance, he had greyish-brown fur, a short, boxy muzzle, and a tiny stub of a tail, but also had long, pointy ears, a small button nose, and royal blue hair on his head.
  • He snarled, showing off his doglike fangs in a rage.

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