Try Our Apps


Avoid these words. Seriously.


[key-nahyn] /ˈkeɪ naɪn/
of or like a dog; relating to or characteristic of dogs:
canine loyalty.
Anatomy, Zoology. of or relating to the four pointed teeth, especially prominent in dogs, situated one on each side of each jaw, next to the incisors.
a canid, or member of the dog family Canidae.
a dog.
a canine tooth; cuspid.
Origin of canine
1350-1400; Middle English canine canine tooth (< Middle French) < Latin canīnus, equivalent to can(is) dog + -īnus -ine1
Related forms
[key-nin-i-tee] /keɪˈnɪn ɪ ti/ (Show IPA),
supercanine, adjective, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for canines
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • In other cases there is extraordinary development of the canines.

    Criminal Man Gina Lombroso-Ferrero
  • When the dog attacks the other, down go the ears, and the canines are uncovered.

  • And the order has gone forth that hereafter no canines are to sleep in this house.

    The Prairie Child Arthur Stringer
  • He would lead the way to where three canines were chained in the junkyard.

    In Pawn Ellis Parker Butler
  • The children might be relegated to the nursery but the canines had the run of the boudoir.

    Nothing But the Truth Frederic S. Isham
  • In all except man also the canines are enlarged, especially in the males.

    The Vertebrate Skeleton Sidney H. Reynolds
  • The canines are larger than the incisors, and the molars have sharp cusps.

    The Vertebrate Skeleton Sidney H. Reynolds
  • The teeth are always rooted, except in the case of the canines of the Walrus.

    The Vertebrate Skeleton Sidney H. Reynolds
  • The canines are greatly developed, and the incisors are small.

    The Vertebrate Skeleton Sidney H. Reynolds
British Dictionary definitions for canines


/ˈkeɪnaɪn; ˈkæn-/
of or resembling a dog; doglike
of, relating to, or belonging to the Canidae, a family of mammals, including dogs, jackals, wolves, and foxes, typically having a bushy tail, erect ears, and a long muzzle: order Carnivora (carnivores)
of or relating to any of the four teeth, two in each jaw, situated between the incisors and the premolars
any animal of the family Canidae
a canine tooth
Word Origin
C17: from Latin canīnus, from canis dog
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for canines



c.1600, of teeth, from canine (n.) or Latin caninus. Meaning "pertaining to a dog or dogs" is from 1620s.



"pointed tooth," late 14c., from Latin caninus "of the dog," genitive of canis "dog" (source of Italian cane, French chien), from PIE root *kwon- "dog" (cf. Greek kyon, Old English hund, Old High German hunt, Old Irish cu, Welsh ci, Sanskrit svan-, Avestan spa, Russian sobaka (apparently from an Iranian source, e.g. Median spaka), Armenian shun, Lithuanian šuo). The noun meaning "dog" is first recorded 1869.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
canines in Medicine

canine ca·nine (kā'nīn)

  1. Of, relating to, or characteristic of members of the family Canidae.

  2. Of, relating to, or being one of the pointed conical teeth located between the incisors and the first bicuspids.

  1. An animal of the family Canidae, especially a dog.

  2. A canine tooth.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source
canines in Science
  1. Characteristic of or resembling dogs, wolves, or related animals.

  2. Relating to any of the four pointed teeth located behind the incisors in most mammals. In carnivores, the canine teeth are adapted for cutting and tearing meat.

Noun  A canine tooth.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
canines in Culture
canines [(kay-neyenz)]

The pointed teeth in the front of the mouth (two on the top and two on the bottom) next to the incisors. These teeth are also known as the eyeteeth.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for canines

Difficulty index for canine

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for canines

Scrabble Words With Friends