attack dog


Definition of attack dog

1 : a dog trained to attack on command or on sight
2 : a person noted for harsh, personal, and usually public verbal attacks against others a political attack dog usually hyphenated when used before another noun attack-dog tactics

Synonyms for attack dog


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Examples of attack dog in a Sentence

The charges against the candidate were made by one of the governor's attack dogs. his reputation as a political attack dog earned him the vice presidential spot on the ticket
Recent Examples on the Web Even his attack dog and closest adviser, Melissa De Rosa, jumped ship. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, 10 Aug. 2021 Otherwise, the veep's role in American politics has mostly been to serve as national laughing stock and occasional political attack dog for the president — often but not always on the outside looking in when the big decisions are made. Joel Mathis, The Week, 15 Nov. 2021 Devin Nunes, a reliable attack dog for Donald Trump, is quitting Congress to head up the former president’s new media startup, the Trump Media & Technology Group. David Meyer, Fortune, 7 Dec. 2021 Reed then backed Bottoms in the 2017 election, serving as her attack dog. Ernie Suggs, ajc, 1 Dec. 2021 This approach is very much in display across Eastern Europe – the encouragement of discord in Bosnia, the hollowing out of Hungarian politics and in particular the harnessing of Belarus as a form of geopolitical attack dog against the EU. Mike O'sullivan, Forbes, 13 Nov. 2021 USA Freedom Fund has shown signs of serving as a campaign attack dog for Mandel. Andrew J. Tobias, cleveland, 23 Oct. 2021 With Republicans struggling to land blows on Biden’s $1.9 trillion spending bill, with its $1,400 checks for millions of people, Trump took it upon himself to reappear as his party’s most effective attack dog. Rob Crilly, Washington Examiner, 22 Mar. 2021 Even his attack dog and closest adviser, Melissa DeRosa, jumped ship. Walter Shapiro, The New Republic, 12 Aug. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'attack dog.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of attack dog

1939, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of attack dog was in 1939

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Dictionary Entries Near attack dog

attack cargo ship

attack dog


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Last Updated

5 Apr 2022

Cite this Entry

“Attack dog.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 May. 2022.

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