Green’s Dictionary of Slang

dogs n.1

also dawgs, doggers, doggies
[first recorded, if not coined by US sportswriter T.A. ‘Tad’ Dorgan (1877–1929) in his syndicated cartoon Indoor Sports]

1. (US) the feet; occas. sing.

[US]T.A. Dorgan Indoor Sports 27 Nov. [synd. cartoon] Many’s the time I wisht I had my dogs under the mahogany at home instead of dealin’ em off the arm here.
[US]Mamie Smith & Her Jazz Hounds [song title] Got To Cool My Doggies Now.
[US]S. Lewis Babbitt (1974) 141: Shake the old dogs to the WROLLICKING WRENS.
[US]M. Bodenheim Georgie May 43: Come on, we’ll take a load off ouah doggies.
[US](con. 1920s) J.T. Farrell Judgement Day in Studs Lonigan (1936) 572: My dogs have had enough wear already.
[US]N. Algren Never Come Morning (1988) 77: My dogs is killin’ me.
[US]J. Steinbeck Sweet Thursday (1955) 108: My dogs are tired!
[Ire]B. Behan ‘Same Again, Please’ in After the Wake (1981) 99: Don’t gimme that, mugsy, but before your dawgs goes into this bucket of nice fresh cee-ment, uh, uh . . .
[US](con. WWII) J.O. Killens And Then We Heard The Thunder (1964) 68: Ain’t nothing the matter with Bucket-head’s feet. His dogs ain’t half as bad as mine.
[US]Eble Campus Sl. Apr. 1: boss dogs – big, pretty, smelly, or tired feet.
[US]S. King Stand (1990) 803: Just put your tired old dogs up on a foot hassock.
[US]D. Woodrell Muscle for the Wing 72: Give your dogs a rest, Detective.
[UK]B. Kirkpatrick Wicked Cockney Rhy. Sl. 26: dogs, dog’s meat feet.

2. (mainly US) shoes.

[UK]Paul Pry 26 Mar. 3/3: Paul Advises [...] Mr. C—s C—k, the fish-cad of High street, who sports his fancy dogs [...] and not think all the girls are in love with him.
[WI]J.G. Cruickshank Negro Humour 51: Felt hat tilted over his eyes, white ‘dogs’ upon his feet.
[US]T.A. Dorgan Indoor Sports 27 Oct. [synd. cartoon] (Watching the office tightwad buy a shine) He’s been workin on those old dogs for an hour now.
[US]R. Lardner ‘Hurry Kane’ in Coll. Short Stories (1941) 89: He’d lift one dog and hold it in the air a minute till he could locate a safe place to put it down. Then he’d do the same thing with the other.
[US]D. Runyon ‘Tight Shoes’ in Runyon on Broadway (1954) 465: Rupert Salsinger takes one look at Hymie’s dogs.
[US]C.B. Davis Rebellion of Leo McGuire (1953) 9: ‘Want a shoe shine, Donny?’ And the fat boy said, ‘Sure, Papa. I guess my dogs could stand some dolling up.’.
[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Pimp 222: The white-spatted dogs of a joker in the barber’s chair.
[US]S. Morgan Homeboy 268: They were gussied up to look like sensible townandcountry doggers.
[NZ]A. Duff One Night Out Stealing 84: Them dogs’ll keep, Son.
[US]Other Side of the Wall: Prisoner’s Dict. July [Internet] Dogs: Shoes. Feet.

3. (US black) gym shoes, trainers.

[US]L. Stavsky et al. A2Z.

In compounds

dog-stiffeners (n.) (also dog-poisoners)

(Aus.) leather leggings.

[Aus]W. Aus. Sun. Times (Perth) 23 Oct. 8/3: When a customer wants any [Limburger cheese] they put on stout leather leggings, dog-stiffeners, and taking down a Winchester rifle, shoot off the required portion which the purchaser removes from the premises at his own risk.
Sun (Kalgoorlie) 11 Nov. 11/3: The doctor is invariably seen in public wearing dog-poisoners, and affects the air of the good old English Enquire accustomed to much hat-touching from the tenantry.
[Aus]Baker Aus. Lang. 182: Leggings worn by outback travellers and workers are known as dog stiffeners or dog poisoners.

In phrases

pedal one’s dogs (v.)

(US) to leave, to go away; esp. as excl. pedal your dogs!

[US]F. Nebel ‘Winter Kill’ in Goulart (1967) 120: Pedal your dogs, little man.