Green’s Dictionary of Slang

dog v.1

1. to act antagonistically.

(a) [late 16C+] (also dawg) to pursue, to hunt down (often with sexual intent).

(b) [mid-19C] (US Und.) to follow; thus dog on, to make someone follow someone else.

(c) [late 19C] (US) to stare at, to glance unpleasantly at.

2. in negative verbal contexts.

(a) [early 17C; 20C+] (orig. UK, later US Und., also dog in) to betray, to inform against.

(b) [late 19C+] (US) to nag, to criticize, to harass, to mistreat.

(c) [late 19C+] (US black) to abuse, to curse, to despise.

(d) [20C+] to pester, to irritate.

(e) [20C+] (US) to cheat.

(f) [20C+] (US) to lie, to deceive.

(g) [1970s+] (US/W.I., also dawg) to taunt, to tease, to mock, to be rude.

(h) [1990s+] (US black teen) to insult someone in front of their friends.

3. in sexual contexts.

(a) [18C+] to have sexual intercourse with.

(b) [late 19C+] (also doggy, do the dog) to engage in sexual intercourse with the male using a rear-entry position.

(c) [1980s+] (US) to rape.

4. to be inadequate; to fail, to disappoint.

(a) [1910s–50s] to idle, to shirk work.

(b) [1980s+] (UK juv.) to absent oneself from school.

(c) [1980s+] to break an appointment, to stand someone up.

(d) [1990s+] (US black) to end a relationship.

(e) [2000s] (Aus.) to abandon one friend for a new one.

5. see dog it v.1 (1)

In phrases

dog along (v.) [? SE dogged]

[20C+] (Can.) to manage, to subsist.

dog around (v.)

see separate entry.

dog away one’s time (v.)

[late 19C] to waste time, to idle about.

dog back (v.)

[20C+] (W.I.) to swallow one’s pride in the hope of regaining a formerly positive relationship.

dog behind (v.)

[20C+] (W.I.) to act in a servile manner, to toady to.


see separate entries.

dog in (v.)

see sense 2a above.

dog it (v.)

see separate entries.

dog on (v.)

1. [late 19C–1910s] (Aus.) to treat badly.

2. [1980s+] (US campus) to criticize, usu. in the victim’s absence.

dog out (v.)

1. [1940s+] to keep a lookout.

2. [1980s] (US black) to approach sexually.

3. [1980s+] (US campus, also do someone like a dog) to betray, to neglect, to treat with disrespect.

4. [1980s+] (US black/prison) to intimidate; to abuse, to criticize.