- something worthless or of extremely poor quality: That used car you bought is a dog.
- an utter failure; flop: Critics say his new play is a dog.
- any of various mechanical devices, as for gripping or holding something.
- a projection on a moving part for moving steadily or for tripping another part with which it engages.
verb (used with object), dogged, dog·ging.
VIDEO FOR DOG
WATCH NOW: Do You Know How To Speak DoggoLingo?
In DoggoLingo, a puppy is called a pupper. A teeny doggo is called smol. A big one is a woofer. Did you follow all that?
QUIZ YOURSELF ON "WAS" VS. "WERE"!
Idioms for dog
- to shirk one's responsibility; loaf on the job.
- to retreat, flee, renege, etc.: a sponsor who dogged it when needed most.
Origin of dog
OTHER WORDS FROM dogdogless, adjectivedoglike, adjective
Words nearby dog
BEHIND THE WORD
Where does the word dog come from?
How did man’s best friend fetch the name dog? This is actually one of English’s toughest headscratchers.
While dog is an extremely common word, its origin hounds us. Until around the 1500s, the go-to term for dog, was hund, which developed into hound. Fun fact: the Latin word for dog, canis, is the origin of the word canine and is, in fact, etymologically related to hound.
But scholars can’t quite put their paws on where the word dog came from. All we know is that it comes from the rare Old English word docga. But where did this word dog come from? Theories have been offered, but etymologists are left chasing their tails. As it happens, the Spanish word for dog, perro, is also of obscure origin.
So, we guess we’ll let this sleeping dog lie for now.
Dog isn’t alone: it finds lots of company in other English words that seem simple but whose origins are not. Discover more in our slideshow “‘Dog,’ ‘Boy,’ And Other Words That We Don’t Know Where They Came From.”
Did you know … ?
There is a good reason that a dog is considered man’s best friend: it’s believed humans domesticated dogs over 10,000 years ago and have been part of our lives ever since. Dogs split off from their genetic cousins, wolves, tens of thousands of years ago, but you can see that some dogs have kept the family resemblance. The word dog is a collective name for the species Canis familiaris, of which there are nearly 200 breeds that range from dalmatians to pugs.
There are also numerous, metaphorical ways you can use the English word dog. It can be used to describe a regular person (a lucky dog), a loathsome man (a dirty dog), or even your feet (my dogs are sore). There are plenty more idioms and other expressions that use dog, such as you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, or that reference the behavior of dogs as in bite the hand that feeds you.
Example sentences from the Web for dog
One step at a time, clumsily restraining an overexcited dog, we lowered ourselves into the valley.A day’s drive from Chicago, exploring a very different Illinois|Carson Vaughan|February 12, 2021|Washington Post
“Susan even asked if she could bring pet food for our dog, when she heard him barking through the door,” she added.
Some people walk dogs out of love, or duty, or because their parents make them.
I take my dog on hikes and when the world isn’t in shambles, I love traveling.
As I walked the dog the other morning, I tried to remember the last time My Lovely Wife and I overslept and didn’t get the trash out in time.When you walk a dog, your mind is as likely to wander as the dog is|John Kelly|February 10, 2021|Washington Post
Indeed, although he works here in the old town, he lives in the new part of the city where he walks his dog in the morning.The Photographer Who Gave Up Manhattan for Marrakech|Liza Foreman|January 6, 2015|DAILY BEAST
Up till then I was just a dog-assed heavy, one of the posse.The Story Behind Lee Marvin’s Liberty Valance Smile|Robert Ward|January 3, 2015|DAILY BEAST
Hangover Rx: “The old ‘hair of the dog’ is pretty much just a myth,” says White.
His latest book is a short story collection, Even a Street Dog: Las Vegas Stories.Will Hyman Roth Return to Havana With Normalized Relations?|John L. Smith|December 18, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Among the evidence recovered: A videotape of two Sena children having sex with the family dog.
A little boy of four was moved to passionate grief at the sight of a dead dog taken from a pond.Children's Ways|James Sully
A was an Archer, who shot at a frog; B was a Butcher, and had a great dog.
The dog stood with hanging head and tail, as if ashamed he had let so many of his enemies get away unharmed.
These words were uttered in a guarded whisper by a boy about seventeen years of age, to a great dog that stood by his side.
At the word of command, the dog crouched down, his whole body quivering with excitement.
British Dictionary definitions for dog
- a domesticated canine mammal, Canis familiaris, occurring in many breeds that show a great variety in size and form
- (as modifier)dog biscuit
- any other carnivore of the family Canidae, such as the dingo and coyote
- (as modifier)the dog family Related adjective: canine
- the male of animals of the dog family
- (as modifier)a dog fox
- spurious, inferior, or uselessdog Latin
- (in combination)dogberry
verb dogs, dogging or dogged (tr)
Derived forms of dogdoglike, adjective
Word Origin for dog
Idioms and Phrases with dog
In addition to the idioms beginning with dog
- dog days
- dog eat dog
- dog in the manger
- dog it
- coon's (dog's) age
- every dog has its day
- go to pot (the dogs)
- hair of the dog
- hot dog
- in the doghouse
- let sleeping dogs lie
- put on the dog
- rain cats and dogs
- see a man about a dog
- shaggy dog story
- sick as a dog
- tail wagging the dog
- teach an old dog new tricks
- throw to the wolves (dogs)
- top banana (dog)