See more synonyms for kennel on
  1. a house or shelter for a dog or a cat.
  2. Often kennels. an establishment where dogs or cats are bred, raised, trained, or boarded.
  3. the hole or lair of an animal, especially a fox.
  4. a wretched abode likened to a doghouse.
  5. a pack of dogs.
verb (used with object), ken·neled, ken·nel·ing or (especially British) ken·nelled, ken·nel·ling.
  1. to put into or keep in a kennel: to kennel a dog for a week.
verb (used without object), ken·neled, ken·nel·ing or (especially British) ken·nelled, ken·nel·ling.
  1. to take shelter or lodge in a kennel.

Origin of kennel

1300–50; Middle English kenel < Anglo-French *kenil (French chenil) < Vulgar Latin *canīle (Latin can(is) dog + -īle suffix of place)


  1. an open drain or sewer; gutter.

Origin of kennel

1575–85; variant of cannel, Middle English canel channel1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for kennel

enclosure, gutter, lair, shelter, drain, pound, den, flock, doghouse

Examples from the Web for kennel

Contemporary Examples of kennel

Historical Examples of kennel

  • Oscar was a colley (sheep dog) which slept in a kennel in the cornyard.

  • When they've done with you at Government House, they may find a kennel for you there until morning.

    Captain Blood

    Rafael Sabatini

  • He placed me in this kennel, vanished, and left me to my fate.

    The Strollers

    Frederic S. Isham

  • His word was law in the stables, the kennel, the plantations, and the boat-quay.

    Tony Butler

    Charles James Lever

  • He was huddled in the back of his kennel, with his nose jammed down into the corner.

    The House in the Water

    Charles G. D. Roberts

British Dictionary definitions for kennel


  1. a hutlike shelter for a dogUS name: doghouse
  2. (usually plural) an establishment where dogs are bred, trained, boarded, etc
  3. the lair of a fox or other animal
  4. a ramshackle house; hovel
  5. a pack of hounds
verb -nels, -nelling or -nelled or US -nels, -neling or -neled
  1. to put or go into a kennel; keep or stay in a kennel

Word Origin for kennel

C14: from Old French chenil, from Vulgar Latin canīle (unattested), from Latin canis dog


  1. archaic an open sewer or street gutter

Word Origin for kennel

C16: variant of cannel channel 1
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

Word Origin and History for kennel

c.1300, from Anglo-French *kenil, Old French chenil, from Vulgar Latin *canile, from Latin canem (nominative canis) "dog" (see canine (n.)), "with suffix as in ovile sheepfold" [OED]. As a verb, 1550s, from the noun.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper