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Line breaks: pup
Pronunciation: /pʌp

Definition of pup in English:


1A young dog.
Example sentences
  • Kate, who owns Parker, the youngest of the pups, has made the same mistake I made with Poppy when she was little - namely not understanding how much food you have to give them.
  • Among popular indigenous breeds such as the Rampur and the Mudhol hounds, the male pups are fancied, leaving only a few males to breed.
  • I thought of the prayer I had said when I asked God to help me get two hound pups.
1.1A young wolf, seal, rat, or other mammal.
Example sentences
  • In spring, the seals' breeding season, mother seals and their pups take refuge in agloos - little snow lairs atop the sea ice.
  • Leopard seals typically feed on penguins and the pups of other seal species but will eat ‘just about everything they come across,’ Rogers said.
  • In 1987 decades of protest culminated in a ban on the clubbing of white-furred harp seal pups in Canada.
1.2 dated A cheeky or arrogant boy or young man: you saucy young pup!
More example sentences
  • Regular readers will know the frustration I have felt at being beaten by this arrogant young pup on previous occasions.
  • The young pup railed against the ‘purist’ who apparently believe that profit is a dirty word and felt that making money somehow corrupted their ‘craft’.
  • Then a young pup of a deputy sports editor ordered me to leave the comfort of my sofa and actually go to Muirfield to experience the golf in the raw.

verb (pups, pupping, pupped)

[no object] Back to top  
(Of bitches and certain other female animals) give birth to young: our Doberman just pupped (as adjective pupping) pupping females
More example sentences
  • Could these be the same birds that every year turn up hundreds of miles away along the desert coast just in time for the sea lion pupping season?
  • Bearded seals and walrus, feed in relatively shallow waters and rely on benthic prey associated with continental shelf areas and rely on annual sea ice for pupping.
  • We have assumed that a reduction in sea ice area is largely detrimental to icebreeding seals but it is conceivable that, similar to their more temperate relatives, they may move to landbased haul-outs, moulting, and pupping areas.


late 16th century (in the sense 'arrogant young man'): back-formation from puppy, interpreted as a diminutive.


in pup

(Of a bitch) pregnant: a bitch in pup, due to whelp soon
More example sentences
  • In the case of a bitch she may turn out to be in pup and you will find yourself saddled with rather more dogs than you can manage.
  • Now that the reality of Millie being in pup has sunk in, we have been considering the possible combinations and permutations of potential litters.

sell someone a pup

British informal Swindle someone by selling them something worthless: people don’t want to go into these places because they’re afraid they’ll be sold a pup
More example sentences
  • It is a difficult process, but it is possible to win compensation if you were sold a pup.
  • ‘If we had put them to the membership, they would have thought they had been sold a pup,’ he said.
  • The talk is that Ford was sold a pup when it bought the British brands - an accusation Dover dismisses.

Definition of pup in:

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