Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know

lap dog

a small pet dog that can easily be held in the lap.
Origin of lap dog
First recorded in 1635-45 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for lapdog
Historical Examples
  • Of course it is all ineffably absurd, but the mania for dress extends even to the lapdog in Paris.

    In Vanity Fair Eleanor Hoyt Brainerd
  • She carries dormice in her pocket, and keeps a lapdog and a squirrel.

    The Maidens' Lodge Emily Sarah Holt
  • Why, you can't get at me, and I can tease you from here as though you were Julie's lapdog.

    Short Stories Fiodor Dostoievski
  • I'd quite as soon be changed into a lapdog, and led along by a string.

    Agatha's Husband Dinah Maria Craik (AKA: Dinah Maria Mulock)
  • He must remain coy in his nook within the wall till he might see the lady's lapdog run across the orchard.

  • The enmity between the lapdog and the mastiff is an old story.

  • The King awoke in great anxiety, and called out, "My kingdom is lost, and my dwarf and my lapdog are killed!"

  • A lapdog slept on her knee, a parrot and a monkey were on perches by her side, the litter was followed by servants and by guards.

    The Romance of Leonardo da Vinci Dmitry Sergeyevich Merezhkovsky
  • And the Mexican lapdog barked all the time, till the church bells tinkled, and the chimney of the apple factory rocked again.

    The Book of Dragons Edith Nesbit
  • As he went, his eyes caught the armies of the ivory chessmen; they stood under glass, and had not been broken by her lapdog.

    Under Two Flags Ouida [Louise de la Ramee]
British Dictionary definitions for lapdog


a pet dog small and docile enough to be cuddled in the lap
(informal) a person who attaches himself to someone in admiration or infatuation
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 lapdog

also lap-dog, 1640s, from lap (n.) + dog (n.); figurative sense of "subservient person" is by 1950.

Senator McCarthy (R-Wis) renewed his Communists-in-Government charges today and called Senator Tydings (D-Md) the Truman administration's "whimpering lap dog." [AP news story, Aug. 7, 1950]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for lapdog



A subservient person; eager sycophant: The leading Singapore newspaper, the Straits Times, enthusiastically fills the role of government lapdog/employee committees that labor leaders charge will be lapdogs of management (1980s+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for lap dog

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for lapdog

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for lapdog