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Definition of ANIMAL
: any of a kingdom (Animalia) of living things including many-celled organisms and often many of the single-celled ones (as protozoans) that typically differ from plants in having cells without cellulose walls, in lacking chlorophyll and the capacity for photosynthesis, in requiring more complex food materials (as proteins), in being organized to a greater degree of complexity, and in having the capacity for spontaneous movement and rapid motor responses to stimulation
a: one of the lower animals as distinguished from human beings
Any member of the kingdom Animalia (seetaxonomy), a group of many-celled organisms that differ from members of the two other many-celled kingdoms, the plants and the fungi (seefungus), in several ways. Animals have developed muscles, making them capable of spontaneous movement (seelocomotion), more elaborate sensory and nervous systems, and greater levels of general complexity. Unlike plants, animals cannot manufacture their own food, and thus are adapted for securing and digesting food. In animals, the cell wall is either absent or composed of material different from that of the plant cell wall. Animals account for about three-quarters of living species. Some one-celled organisms display both plant and animal characteristics. See alsoalgae, arthropod, bacteria, chordate, invertebrate, protist, protozoan, vertebrate.