American English

Definition of dog noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    , NAmE//dɑɡ//
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  1. 1[countable] an animal with four legs and a tail, often kept as a pet or trained for work, for example hunting or guarding buildings. There are many types of dogs, some of which are wild I took the dog for a walk. I could hear a dog barking. dog food guard dogs a dog and her puppies see also guide dog, gun dog, hearing dog, lapdog, prairie dog, sheepdog
  2. 2[countable] a male dog, fox or wolf compare bitch
  3. 3[countable] (informal) a thing of low quality; a failure Her last movie was an absolute dog.
  4. 4[countable] (informal) an offensive way of describing a woman who is not considered attractive
  5. 5[countable] (informal) (disapproving) used, especially after an adjective, to describe a man who has done something bad You dirty dog! see also hot dog, shaggy-dog story, top dog, watchdog
  6. Idioms
    be raining cats and dogs (informal)
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    to be raining heavily
    a dog and pony show (informal) (disapproving)
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    an event that is planned only in order to impress people so that they will support or buy something the dog and pony show of his visits to the war zone a dog and pony show to sell the idea to investors
    (a case of) dog eat dog
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    a situation in business, politics, etc. where there is a lot of competition and people are willing to harm each other in order to succeed I'm afraid in this line of work it's a case of dog eat dog. We're operating in a dog-eat-dog world.
    a dog in the manger
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    a person who stops other people from enjoying what he or she cannot use or does not want
    a dog's life
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    an unhappy life, full of problems or unfair treatment He led poor Amy a dog's life. She was desperately lonely, poor dear.
    every dog has his/its day (saying)
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    everyone has good luck or success at some point in their life
    fight like cats and dogs
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    to argue in a very angry way, especially regularly over a period of time We fought like cats and dogs when we were younger.
    go to the dogs (informal)
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    to get into a very bad state This company's gone to the dogs since the new management took over.
    the hair of the dog (that bit you) (informal)
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    alcohol that you drink in order to make you feel better when you have drunk too much alcohol the night before
    let sleeping dogs lie (saying)
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    to avoid mentioning a subject or something that happened in the past, in order to avoid any problems or arguments
    (as) sick as a dog (informal)
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    feeling very sick; vomit a lot
    the tail (is) wagging the dog
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    used to describe a situation in which the most important aspect is being influenced and controlled by someone or something that is not as important
    (you can't) teach an old dog new tricks (saying)
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    (you cannot) successfully make people change their ideas, methods of work, etc., when they have had them for a long time
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: dog